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Canning's late point breaks Tipperary hearts

Thursday, 10 August 2017

Canning's late point breaks Tipperary hearts thumbnailTipperary manager Michael Ryan saw his side just pipped bu an injury time point in Sunday's All-Ireland semi-final at Croke Park. MT23906RM

THERE was heartbreak for Tipperary hurlers when an injury time point from Joe Canning gave the Tribesmen victory by the narrowest of margins after a thrilling All-Ireland senior hurling semi-final before an attendance of over 68,000 at Croke Park on Sunday last.
The margin between success and failure can often be only a matter of inches and such was the case in this Croke Park epic.
With the game in injury time Joe Canning took a pass from Johnny Coen near the Cusack Stand sideline and despite severe pressure from Tipperary players managed to steer his shot between the posts for the lead point. A matter of seconds later John "Bubbles" O'Dwyer won possession from the Tipp puckout and from under the Hogan Stand swung his shot towards the Davin End but the ball trailed just to the left and wide and Tipp's last chance of a draw was gone.
Many would argued that a draw would have been a fair result after a game that was always in the melting pot with never more than a few points between the sides, one way or the other. In the end though, Canning's piece or magic swung the game marginally in Galway's flavour.
Amazingly this was the third year in succession that the sides have met in the All-Ireland semi-final and all three games have ended in one point victory, two to Galway in 2015 and 2017 and one to Tipperary iin 2016. It highlights how little there is between the sides and how small margins just one way or the other can make a huge difference.
Defeat brings Tipperary's reign as All-Ireland champions to an end and their long quest, going back to 1964/1965 to win back to back All-Ireland titles goes on.
This was probably their best display of this championship season and it went so close to getting them back to Croke Park on the first Sunday in September. Having lost heavily to Galway in the Allianz League Final in April, they stepped up to the mark from the outset on Sunday and ensured that there would be no repeat of that performance.
They began with 14 of the side which captured the McCarthy Cup last September and they pushed Galway to the limit but unfortunately came up a fraction short.
After that great victory in the league final, Galway assumed the mantle of All-Ireland favourites in many people's eyes and so far they have lived up to that mark. Now they await the winner of next Sunday's semi-final between Cork and Waterford to see who they will meet on September 3 as they try to bridge a 29 year gap to their last All-Ireland title in 1988.
For Tipperary it is now a case of regrouping before faciing the challenge of 2018. Players will now return to their clubs and concentration turns to the county championship, which resumes action this weekend.

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