Galway triumphant in U21 All-Ireland hurling final

Galway 5-11 Dublin 0-12, Croke Park

Galway maintained their 100% record against Dublin in All-Ireland Under-21 hurling finals this afternoon with an impressive 5-11 to 0-12 win over the Metropolitans at Croke Park.

The Tribesmen made a blistering start to this game and they led by 3-4 to 0-2 after just 13 minutes thanks to well worked goals from Conor Kavanagh (2) and Sean Glynn.

It was suspect defending on Dublin's part in those opening minutes as Vincent Mullins' prolific forwards rampaged through with considerable ease.

Bad defending led to Galway's first goal after seven minutes when Kavanagh received a pass from Joe Canning and the Kinvara corner forward had no trouble in slotting the first of his majors to the net.

Indeed such was Galway's early dominance that Dublin's only point in the opening quarter came after four minutes from top scorer Alan McCrabbe from a placed ball.

Dublin's defence got stronger as the half progressed and Paddy Curtin made an impressive save in the 15th-minute denying Glynn what would have been his second goal.

It was the midfield partnership of McCrabbe and John McCaffrey which kept alive any hope for the Dubs, while Peadar Carton was also on target in a bright ten-minute spell for his side, during which they managed to hold Galway scoreless.

But Mullins' youngsters came back strongly and a goal from Kerrill Wade before the interval ensured a 4-6 to 0-8 half-time lead for Galway.

Dublin were not going to lie down and Sean Lane's charges came out strongly for the second half with two McCrabbe points, but once again Galway found their groove and the Craobh Chiarain clubman was the only Dublin player to hit the target in the second half.

Semi-final hero Joe Canning was playing a great supportine role at this stage for Galway but also chipped in with a 43rd-minute point, ensuring a double scores advantage at 4-8 to 0-10.

An excellent Keith Kilkenny point, following a clean catch, and a Wade effort ensured that the gap was extended to 12 points and it seriously looked like there was no way back for Dublin.

The capital side did stage a rally in the closing stages, mainly thanks to the free-taking abilities of McCrabbe. Galway substitute Noel Kelly sealed victory with a 60th-minute goal after he had just come on as a substitute.

Kelly was certainly prolific in his short time on the field and added a late point to ensure a comprehensive victory for Galway.

GALWAY: J Skehill; A Leech, G Mahon, C O'Donovan; M Ryan, J Lee, A Keary; D Kennedy, K Kilkenny (0-1); S Glynn (1-0), K Hynes, F Coone (0-2); C Kavanagh (2-0), J Canning (0-3, 1f), K Wade (1-4, 2f).

Subs used: B Hanley for Glynn (30 mins), A Harte for Kennedy (57), J Greene for Coone, N Kelly (1-1) for Kavanagh (both 59), P Loughnane for Leech (60).

DUBLIN: P Curtin; R Drumgoole, P O'Callaghan, D Webster; K Dunne, T Brady, J Boland; J McCaffrey (0-1), A McCrabbe (0-9, 6f, 1 65, 1 sideline); E Moran, D Connolly (0-1), S Durkin; P Carton (0-1), D O'Dwyer, R O'Carroll.

Subs used: M McGarry for Webster (18 mins), I Fleming for O'Carroll, S Lehane for Connolly (both 48).

Referee: John Ryan (Tipperary)

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