ALL THE talk nationally was about how it was Galway's time to shine. They did for long periods until that light was extinguished by a fantastic last ten minutes from Wexford as the claimed the All-Ireland Senior Camogie championship title in Croke Park on Sunday last.
In what was a historic day for Wexford camogie the seniors failed to ignite, particularly in the first half. But winners are winners for a reason and so it proved as they dug deeper than they ever have needed to before to pull off a stunning third victory in five years.
There were, as always in big games, heroes everywhere. For example, the defence coped manfully with the endless pressure that seemed to be dumped on them for elongated spells.
The midfield kept their heads above water and even produced Wexford's first score from play when Josie Dwyer - so cruelly stranded at corner-forward last year - popped over a symbolic point in the 38th minute.
The forwards were curtailed for much of the contest but when you need a spark, a jolt of lightening, up pop big players, last year it was Katrina Parrock and Una Leacy, this year it was Ursula Jacob and Kate Kelly - the latter playing the entire second half with a suspected broken toe.
The game itself was systematic of much of this year for the senior side. All year they never, ever, fully broke out of their straight jacket, never hit top gear, they endlessly produce for patches before getting bogged down and sloppy. And it happened again.
Manager J.J. Doyle talked in the week about being out of sight in the first half if they didn't produce, well as a unit they didn't but a stunning rearguard action by the best set of backs ever to grace a camogie field kept the game alive.
The one moment of true brilliance that Wexford did muster in the opening period saw veteran attacker Kate Kelly hurtling towards goal. Despite getting hacked down she continued to fight and managed to force the ball over the line but, despite the successful attempt, referee Mike O'Kelly's whistle had already gone for a penalty.
Una Leacy, off the pace and desperately injured in the semi-final stepped up to rattle home a bullet that Susan Earner could only deflect to the net as Wexford clutched onto the perfect start.
That fourth minute strike was quickly countered by points from Galway; Aislinn Connolly added a free from the left before Veronica Curtin, the only All-Ireland winner on the field for the Tribeswomen, picked off a second point.
Having missed an earlier attempt Ursula Jacob pointed when Kate Kelly was fouled to leave Wexford 1-1 to 0-2 ahead in the 18th minute.
However the advantage was fragile and soon Mags D'Arcy was forced into a fine save from Curtin as she broke past the Wexford fullback line.
Martina Conroy did chip a point off the lead with six minutes of the opening period remaining but, despite dominating, seven first half wides were costly for Galway.
When Kelly was fouled again Jacob picked off her second over of the half but things almost got better in injury time as Katrina Parrock's effort smacked the crossbar and rebounded to safety leaving Wexford two ahead at the interval (1-2 to 0-3).
A pair of quick scores from Noreen Coen and Tara Ruttledge drew the Westerners level within two minutes of the resumption but when Parrock collected a long ball behind their defence it was left to Susan Earner to produce a fine save to maintain parity.
Ruttledge drove a dagger to Wexford hearts in the 38th minute when she pulled home a leading goal for her side as they went ahead for the first time but Wexford reacted well and points from Dwyer and nice effort from Lenny Holohan made it 1-5 to 1-4.
Last year's runners-up didn't let the quick-fire points effect them and notched through Niamh Kilkenny, who was well shackled all day, and Aislinn Connolly.
Jacob pointed when Una Leacy was fouled in the 49th minute but Orla Kilkenny quickly replied and, heading into the last few minutes, it looked like the bridesmaids on so many previous occasions would have their day in the spotlight (1-8 to 1-5).
However they would fail to score again as, just like the league final in April, Wexford blitzed them late on.
Drifting like her usually energetic self Josie Dwyer found space on the left-wing and her cross field ball was plucked from the sky by Ursula Jacob, the captain done just what's expected of a leader by turning Sinead Cahalan and lashing to the Galway net (2-5 to 1-8).
Wexford tails were suddenly flapping furiously as Kate Kelly started to run the show. First she was fouled in the 58th minute and Jacob pointed the free to put Wexford ahead before she fed the full-forward moments later as the Oulart-The Ballagh star knocked over a stunning settling point.
Galway managed to put on a little late pressure but never looked like champions do, like winners, like they would do it. They didn't, and Wexford hung on to add the O'Duffy Cup to the trophy cabinet yet again.
Wexford scorers: Ursula Jacob (1-5, 0-4 frees), Una Leacy (1-0 free), Josie Dwyer, Lenny Holohan (0-1 each).
Galway: Tara Rutledge (1-1), Ashlinn Connolly (0-2, 0-1 free), Niamh Kilkenny (0-1 '45), Noreen Coen, Veronica Curtin, Martina Conroy and Orla Kilkenny (0-1 each).