Kilkenny 0-20, Galway 0-18
Kilkenny had to withstand a late rally to see off the Galway challenge and lift the Walsh Cup for a 20th time at a chilly Nowlan Park.
There was little between the teams in the early exchanges but, led by Richie Hogan, who hit eight first half points, five from frees, Brian Cody’s side took a 0-13 to 0-10 lead in at the break.
Kilkenny kept up their charge after the restart, staying three points clear thanks to scores from Hogan (65) and Ollie Walsh. Galway were hurt by the loss of centre-back Martin Dolphin and fell five points behind when Hogan (free) and Walsh struck again to make it 0-17 to 0-12 with a quarter of the game to play.
Galway drove on in the final quarter. Sean McInerney had a goal chance saved by Kilkenny ’keeper Eoin Murphy, but the Cats were reduced to 14 men when Pat Lyng was dismissed for a second yellow card offence 14 minutes from time.
Aidan Harte and Davy Glennon helped to narrow the gap with some late points, but it wasn’t enough to reel in the long-time leaders.
Kilkenny - R. Hogan (0-11, 0-7 frees, 0-2 65s); O. Walsh (0-3); L Ryan (0-2); K. Joyce, C. Fogarty, P. Lyng, C. Martin (0-1 each).
Galway - J. Flynn (0-6, five frees); J. Cooney, D. Glennon (0-2 each); S. Maloney (0-2, one free); C. Callanan (0-1, free); A. Tuohy, A. Harte, J. Coen, S. McInerney, T. Monaghan (0-1 each).
Kilkenny - E. Murphy; J. Holden, R. Lennon, M. Walsh; K. Joyce, P. Murphy, C. Fogarty; O. Walsh, L. Ryan; P. Lyng, C. Martin, M. Malone; R. Hogan, J.J. Farrell, R. Leahy. Subs - C. O’Shea for C. Fogarty ht; L. Blanchfield for Malone 42nd min; S. Morrissey for Leahy 52nd min; J. Maher for Martin 61st min; A. Murphy for Farrell 70th min.
Galway - C. Callanan; B. Flaherty, J. Hanbury, J. Grealish; A. Tuohy, M. Dolphin, A. Harte; J. Coen, D. Nevin; S. Maloney, J. Cooney, D. Glennon; S. McInerney, J. Flynn, C. Whelan. Sub - T. Monaghan for Nevin 28th min; M Donohoe for Grealish ht; G. McInerney for Dolphin (inj) 50th min; P. Flaherty for S. McInerney 59th min; K. McHugo for C. Whelan 64th min.
Referee - P. Murphy (Carlow).