Sports

Tipp victory sets up third semi-final in a row with Galway

Thursday, 27 July 2017

Tipp victory sets up third semi-final in a row with Galway thumbnailJohn McGrath of Tipperary receiving the Man of the Match trophy from Matthias Muller, General Manager of Abbey Court Hotel & Spa, a Bord Gais Energy customer, at the GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Championship Quarter-Final match.

FOR THE third year in succession Tipperary will face Galway in the All-Ireland Senior Hurling semi-final following the draw made on Morning Ireland on Monday morning last.
Tipperary qualified for the semi-final with a three point victory over Clare at the newly opened Pairc Ui Chaoimh in Cork on Saturday last and as Waterford won the other quarter final on Sunday, it meant a draw for the semi-finals as both Tipp and Waterford had already faced Cork in the Munster championship.
The Galway-Tipperary tie was the first out of the hat and the sides will meet in the first of the semi-finals at Croke Park on Sunday week August 6.
The difference between this year and the last two years is that Galway are going into the semi-final this year as provincial champions with Tipperary coming through the back door whereas in the last two years Tipp were Munster champions and Galway had to navigate their way through the qualifiers.
The last two semi-finals have been rip roaring contests, which both ended with a one point victory. In 2015 it was Galway who came out on top when Shane Maloney's late point secured victory despite Seamus Callanan's tour de force for Tipp with 3-11.
Last year the tables were turned and this time Tipperary came out on the right side of the one point victory, helped largely by two goals late in the game.
Of course the sides have met already this year with Galway scoring a huge victory over Tipp to capture the Allianz Hurling League title at the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick in April. It was a hugely impressive display by the Tribesmen and since then they have been many people's favourites to go all the way and recapture the Liam McCarthy Cup for the first time in 29 years.
Last Saturday Tipperary withstood a terrific second half fightback from Clare before pulling away again in the closing stages and winning by three points, 028 to 3-16.
It was a victory that pleased manager Michael Ryan.
"We came here to get into the semi final and it's mission accomplished but what a game," said the delighted Tipperary manager. "When we got off to a reasonably good start in the first half, Clare hit us with two super goals. They were really well taken goals and they showed exactly the type of ability they have in that squad inside there. But look I was very happy with our fellows too. I thought we got into the game from the off and put up a decent tally of points but the over-riding feeling here is total relief to have got through as Clare fought back to get six unanswered points and had it down to one. That was the tipping point of the game and it went back in our favour and I am delighted," said Ryan.
Clare joint manager Donal Moloney said he was very proud of his Clare team after their defeat. He said he admired their ability to cut down the Tipp lead while admitting every team makes mistakes in relation to the poor puckout strategy produced by his side before half time.
“It's a huge disappointment. We have a lot of regrets. I think certain periods of the game cost us maybe around the seventh or eighth minute of the first half and the last few minutes before half time. Then when we got within a point we couldn't maintain the momentum. But fair play to Tipp. They are good champions and they got a bit of daylight there again," said Donal.
Now the attention will turn to the Tipperary-Galway clash on Sunday week. Indeed it will be a big weekend of Tipperary-Galway clashes as the two counties will also meet in the All-Ireland camogie quarter final the same weekend, at Nowlan Park Kilkenny on Saturday August 5.

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