Thursday 22 March 2018

Boyle the hero as Galway advance

Galway 1-11 Cork 0-12


Wing-forward Michael Boyle was the Galway hero as he blasted home the only goal to decide a thrilling All-Ireland under 21 semi-final at Cusack Park in Ennis last night.

Boyle struck 10 minutes from time after a flowing passing movement involving Mark Hehir and Adrian Murphy to complete a great Galway comeback. The win sees Galway into their first final in the grade since 2005.

Cork seemed poised for victory, with Ciaran Sheehan leading the way, when they opened up a four-point lead in the third quarter.

The brilliance of Sheehan was evident during an opening half where Galway were on top in midfield; the Munster champions still led by 0-7 to 0-6 at the interval.

Sheehan kicked three superb points from play in that opening period. Galway's midfield dominance through Thomas Flynn had seen them open a lead of 0-5 to 0-2 after 14 minutes.

Sheehan's accuracy hauled the Rebels back into contention and they seemed set to set up an All-Ireland date when they led by 0-11 to 0-7 after 41 minutes.

Remarkably the side which demolished Kerry by 22 points in the Munster final managed just one more point after that, and that came from substitute Kevin Hallissey in injury-time.

Galway rallied with the impressive Mark Hehir kicking a brace and Eric Monahan also finding the range to leave it 0-11 to 0-10 before Boyle struck for the decisive score.

Sub Michael Farragher put further daylight between them and while Cork rallied in the closing stages, the Tribesmen deservedly held on for victory.

Scorers -- Galway: M Hehir 0-5 (3f), M Boyle 1-1, E Monahan 0-2 (1f), P Sweeney, T Flynn, M Farragher 0-1 each. Cork: C Sheehan 0-4, M Collins 0-3 (1f), B O'Driscoll 0-2, D Og Hodnett, K Hallissey, A Walsh 0-1 each.

Galway: M Breathnach; G Sweeney, C Forde, A Tierney; J Moore, J Duane, T Fahy; T Flynn, F O Curraoin; C Doherty, M Hehir, M Boyle; D Cummins, P Sweeney, E Monaghan. Subs: A Muphy for P Sweeney (42), M Farragher for Cummins (57), JJ Greaney for Monahan (60).

Cork: J Mellet; L Jennings, D Cahalane, A Cronin; P Daly, T Clancy, J Wall; M O'Leary, A Walsh; C Sheehan, M Collins, J O'Rourke; D Og Hodnett, B O'Driscoll, B Coughlan. Subs: D Nation for O'Leary (30), K Hallissey for Walsh (47), E Buckley for Coughlan (49).

Referee: J Curley (Westmeath).

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