Galway hurlers' season on the line in Thurles

The Galway hurlers now face a "do or die" game against Clare this Sunday at Semple Stadium (4pm ) in the All-Ireland quarter-final following their defeat to Kilkenny in the Leinster hurling final.

If Micheal Donoghue's squad win this weekend, they will face Tipperary in the All-Ireland semi-final in a few weeks time, but a defeat would see them out of the 2016 All-Ireland series.

Team selector Frannie Forde says the players know exactly what must be done this weekend and they are looking forward to the challenge of taking on the Banner.

"The entire squad and management team know we have to deliver a big display at the weekend if we are going to stay in the championship," Forde says. "We have had three weeks since the Leinster final and one round of club games and, thankfully, barring a few niggles we have a full panel to pick from.

'The lads are a really honest bunch and they know there are things we need to improve on from the game against Kilkenny. We have looked at the things that did not go right for us in that game and the plan is to rectify them and make sure they don't happen again."

Clare are on the back of a good win over Limerick in the qualifiers and they will be arriving in Thurles in a positive frame of mind.

Forde acknowledges that, but points out that the only thing Galway are concerned with is their own preparations and focusing on what they have to do to make the last four.

"Clare have a lot of hurling played this year and they had a good end to the league with the win over Waterford. There has been a lot of positivity coming from the county since the appointment of Donal Óg Cusack before Christmas and they will take a lot from the win over Limerick. However we believe that if we play to our best, we are capable of getting a positive result.

"If we lose in three days' time, our season is over, and we will have to lick our wounds and plan for next year. However, if we win, the season really opens up and we are in an All-Ireland semi-final.

"That reality helps to focus everyone's mind and the panel is demanding a big performance from each other. Clare are tough opponents and they have some top class hurlers, however so have we.

"The reality is that we are going to Thurles to deliver a performance and get a result. It is that simple. The players have worked really hard over the past few months and they have to go out now on Sunday and deliver on that. If they perform as we know they can, we will be very hard to beat."



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