Galway react to wake-up call with win against Waterford

Galway 2-22 Waterford 2-19

Galway react to wake-up call with win against Waterford

Experimental Waterford led by eight points after 18 minutes. They looked good for an upset, when Tom Devine’s second goal in the space of a minute gave the visitors a double-digit cushion.

However, Kevin Moran and Devine were the only Waterford scorers thereafter, with a point each, as Galway stormed back to justify their pre-match favourites’ tag and earn a Division 1 semi-final spot against Limerick, whom they beat last week.

Joe Canning was to the fore in that resurrection: 1-5 of his 1-10 total came between the 45th and 64th minutes.

Having earlier seen his penalty saved by Ian O’Regan, after a Shane McNulty foul on Cathal Mannion, his second attempt, in the 64th minute, to level the game was far more clinical and punished another foul on Mannion, this time by Tadhg de Burca.

Seconds later, Padraig Mannion put Galway ahead for the first time and Aidan Harte then scored his second point, before David Burke sealed the win in additional time. The Galway following, in the 12,082 Pearse Stadium crowd, could breathe a sigh of relief, after being subdued for so long. Micheál Donoghue appreciated their backing.

“There was a lot of build-up during the week. It was the first time in a couple of years that we’ve had two high-quality games in Galway, and that was evident from the crowd that was here. The footballers did well to get their win and secure promotion. I keep saying to the lads that we’re looking for work-rate and showing that attitude, because, historically, supporters would leave with 10 minutes to go if we were 10 points down, but once they started working, in fairness, the crowd got behind them and they pushed on.”

Canning was shown a second yellow card in the dying stages, following an incident involving Michael Walsh, who was also booked. He also picked up an injury for his trouble. But he was superb for the home side, who had been so flat in the early stages.

That they were only 0-15 to 1-9 down at half-time was an achievement in itself, as they had only registered one point from play in the opening 23 minutes, before Conor Cooney slotted home their opening goal, after a beautiful pass by Mannion.

Waterford led 0-10 to 0-2 after 18 minutes, having harnessed the wind and were almost scoring at will, although Devine and Tommy Ryan could have done better when there was a goal on offer. Galway looked shocked by the purpose with which Waterford were playing.

“We acted out the good, the bad, and the ugly,” said Donoghue. “We hadn’t a great start and it took us a good bit to get up to the pace. Waterford started really well and the message from us, at half-time, was that we had created as many scoring opportunities as they had, but theirs went over and ours didn’t.”

Galway’s improvement didn’t materialise until their backs were well and truly to the wall, when Devine found the net twice in a matter of seconds, in the 43rd and 44th minutes.

With three goals in two games now for Devine, Derek McGrath can see the improvement in the forward.

“The key to the goals was his actual first touch, which he worked so hard on in getting possession early. If he gets it early, I won’t say he’s a barrelling presence, but he has a presence that is very strong and he’s very quick and he offers a threat to the goal.”

Galway could have thrown their hat at it, but, instead, rallied as Canning and David Burke began to rule the middle third. Waterford introduced experience from the bench, but the game had irreversibly turned in the Division 1B team’s favour.

Scorers for Galway: J. Canning (1-10, 1-0 pen,0-4 frees, 1 sideline); C. Cooney (1-0); C. Whelan (0-3); N. Burke, A. Harte, D. Burke (0-2 each); C. Mannion, T. Monaghan, P. Mannion (0-1 each).

Scorers for Waterford: T. Devine (2-1); M. Shanahan (0-6 4 frees); S. Roche (0-3); K. Moran, T. Ryan, D.J. Foran (0-2 each); Stephen Bennett, M. O’Brien, S. Keating (0-1 each).

GALWAY: C. Callanan; J. Hanbury, Daithí Burke, A. Harte; P. Mannion, G. McInerney, P. Killeen; J. Coen, A. Tuohy; David Burke, J. Canning, J. Cooney; C. Whelan, C. Cooney, C. Mannion.

Subs for Galway: T. Monaghan for J. Hanbury (inj 23); N. Burke for J. Cooney (52); S. Maloney for C. Cooney (69).

WATERFORD: I. O’Regan; K. Bennett, S. McNulty, S. Fives; C. Gleeson, T. de Burca, S. Keating; Stephen Bennett, S. Roche, D.J. Foran; T. Ryan, T. Devine, M. Shanahan.

Subs for Waterford: Shane Bennett for D.J. Foran (43); N. Connors for S. Keating (56); M. Walsh for M. O’Brien (58); B. O’Halloran for T. Ryan (59); Pauric Mahony for S. Roche (61).

Referee: B. Kelly (Westmeath).

60 Second Report


Joe Canning’s 64th minute penalty came after a dominant Galway period and put them level before they went ahead for the first time.

Talk of the town

That a largely Waterford second string team threatened to upset a day of celebration for Galway GAA.

Did that just happen?

A big hurling game atmosphere in Salthill. Not often experienced these days.

Sideline superior

Waterford were sharper in body and mind in the early stages and drawing Maurice Shanahan back into the half-forward line freed up plenty of space in the opening half. Waterford were otherwise more conventional and their relatively inexperienced full-back line didn’t enjoy much protection. That being said, Galway’s cover was blown to smithereens by Tom Devine’s two goals.

Best on show

Canning guided Galway back into this game when it looked beyond them. Kudos to Cathal Mannion too. Stephen Bennett put in another sterling show for Waterford and Devine is developing nicely into a real goal-getter.

Man in black

Barry Kelly let some matters slide but then there were so many off-the-ball scuffles that it was difficult to keep tabs on everything. Both penalty calls looked right.

Where next?

Galway face Limerick in Sunday week’s Division 1 semi-final. Waterford now wait to meet the winners of Tipperary and Cork in a June 18 Munster semi-final.

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