GALWAY manager Noel Turley has called for an open draw in the intermediate hurling championship.
He was speaking in the aftermath of his side’s drubbing at the hands of a superb Waterford side in the All-Ireland semi-final at Semple Stadium on Saturday.
“I certainly don’t want to see this championship being discontinued, but we were not competing on a level playing field. Two things are wrong with it from our point of view,” he said.
“We went into this semi-final without a competitive game played; and secondly, we were confined to playing players from junior and intermediate clubs, while our opponents could pick from senior clubs. That is not right.
“It would make far more sense if this championship was played on an open draw basis. At least there would be a couple of games for the participants and it might entice more counties to take part. It’s a great competition and I would hate to see it disappear.”
His opposite number Michael Walsh had a similar view.
“I don’t see any reason why this championship should be disbanded. For junior and intermediate players around the country it’s a great opportunity to represent their county. I appreciate the clubs are under a lot of pressure, but in reality it’s the senior championship that is causing the problems, not this.”
Hurling with supreme confidence all over the field, Waterford blitzed Galway with six points in a row and only the thickness of the crossbar denied Shane Casey a goal after 15 seconds.
Casey was in devastating form at full forward. If he wasn’t scoring he was playmaker and had a hand in his side’s two first half goals, scored by Conor Carey. The winners held an interval lead of 2-9 to 1-0 and though Galway improved in the second half, the Munster champions played much of the match in the comfort zone. They will now meet Wexford in the All-Ireland final. Scorers for Waterford: S. Casey 1-5 (0-4 frees); P. Kearney 1-3; C. Carey 1-2; P. Fitzgerald 0-4 (0-1 free); S. Barron 0-2; G. Power 0-1.
Scorers for Galway: M. Greaney 2-0; B. Lawless 0-3; E. Hyland (free), T. Tierney, M. Lydon 0-1.
WATERFORD: I. O’Regan; B. Wall, J. O’Leary, T. Molumphy, J. Hartley, S. Kearney, W. Hutchinson; D. Howard, G. Power; P., Fitzgereald, C. Carey, M. Molumphy; P. Kearney, S. Casey, S Barron.
Subs: S. Slattery for Casey; R. Foley for Hartley; N. Jacob for M. Molumphy.
GALWAY: J. Skehill; W. Lyons, P. Loughnane, R. Reilly; N. Earls, L. Hodgins, L. Madden; V. Faherty, P. Madden; C. ryan, M. Lydon, J. Culkin; M. Greaney, E. Hyland, J. Gilsten.
Subs: T. Tierney for Ryan; B. Lawless for Earls; D. Cormican for Gilsten; PJ Forde for Culkin; I. Creaven for Reilly.
Referee: D. Richardson (Limerick).