Friday 24 November 2017

GALWAY'S FINAL TALE

1887: Galway, represented by Meelick, lost to Tipperary (Thurles) in the first final. It was actually played in Birr in August 1888.

1923: Galway's next final appearance was a winning one in Croke Park, overcoming Limerick 7-3 to 4-5. The game was played in 1924.

1924-29: Despite reaching four finals in six years, they could not add to their 1923 success, losing to Dublin ('24), Tipperary ('25) and Cork ('28 & '29).

The 1950s: Long years in the wilderness followed the promise of the 1920s and it was 1953 before Galway reached another senior hurling final, losing again to Cork. Defeats to Wexford (1955) and Tipperary (1958) extended the famine.

The 1970s: The lean years continued, as twice Kilkenny foiled them at the final hurdle, in 1975 and 1979.

The 1980s: The golden age for Galway hurling, with famous scenes in Croke Park on September 7, 1980 as Joe Connolly raised the Liam MacCarthy Cup (pictured). They reached six finals in the decade, losing in '81, '85 and '86, and winning back-to-back titles in '87 and '88.

Another long wait: After losing to Cork in 1990, more final defeats followed ('93, 2001, '05 and 2012). Victory today would be a first title in 27 years.

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