Ten minutes from the end of the Kilkenny-Galway Leinster hurling round-robin game in UPMC Nowlan Park last June, Johnny Coen scored a goal which extended the visitors’ lead to six points.
Former Dublin hurler Ryan O’Dwyer makes no bones about his disdain for the possibility of the black card being introduced into hurling and he is of the opinion that "you don't really get the time to be too cynical".
Just 550 spectators braved Storm Dennis to see Dublin preserve an unbeaten record in league and championship over Carlow at Netwatch Cullen Park on Saturday. With an eight-point handicap, the outcome had a leaden predictability but it took the visitors time to assert themselves after leading by just two points at half-time.
If there was an asterisk over all of this year's hurling league matches given the new, more forgiving format, then there were further allowances to be made for this one. Conditions and absentees meant this was a dress rehearsal for a summer showdown in name only.
At half-time Dublin's hurlers had a chance to take a good look at themselves. What they saw wasn't flattering. In challenging conditions - the venue passed fit to play despite a weekend storm warning - they looked to have no stomach for the fight and Carlow went in only two points behind having played into the wind and rain.
THE GAA’s county boards are carrying debts of €100m, the Sunday Independent can reveal, but almost one-third of that is being shouldered by Cork in the wake of the massive overspend on redeveloping Páirc Uí Chaoimh.
PERHAPS it was the biblical weather, or maybe it was the half-time words of Mattie Kenny still ringing in their ears, but it took Dublin hurlers a full 35 minutes to shake off their inhibitions in Netwatch Cullen Park.
PRIOR to their convention last December, as he sought to assure clubs that Galway GAA was getting on top of its recent financial crisis, outgoing treasurer Mike Burke provided the caveat that €500k would have to be raised annually, regardless of how the county’s teams performed.
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