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Kiely leads stunning Déise fightback

Waterford 2-13 Tipperary 3-9

Austin Gleeson of Waterford tangles with Patrick Maher of Tipperary during the Munster GAA Senior Hurling Championship Round 3 match between Waterford and Tipperary at the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick. Photo: Sportsfile
Austin Gleeson of Waterford tangles with Patrick Maher of Tipperary during the Munster GAA Senior Hurling Championship Round 3 match between Waterford and Tipperary at the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick. Photo: Sportsfile

independent.ie Sportsdesk

Waterford produced a stunning comeback to beat Tipperary at the Gaelic Grounds yesterday.

Trailing 3-9 to 0-8 with 48 minutes played, Tipperary looked certain to win their second game of the championship, but Waterford had other ideas.

The Déise hit 2-5 without reply in the final quarter to earn their first victory of the competition. The fightback was led by Michael Kiely, who moved up from the half-back line to score 2-1 in the finale.

Tipperary made the brighter start to the game, with corner-forward James Devaney sending over their first four points, before Seamus Keating and Paddy Leevy replied for Waterford.

Tommy Dunne's side then hit the first goal on 16 minutes when Sean Hayes forced the ball home from an acute angle.

Waterford were well off the pace in the opening half-hour, but a sublime Caolan MacCraith sideline cut gave them hope going into the second-half, cutting Tipperary's lead to six points.

But hopes of a comeback looked even slimmer when Devon Ryan buried Tipperary's second goal.

Hayes hit their third 11 minutes into the second-half and Waterford looked done.

However, Kiely kept them in touch from play and two goals in the space of 80 seconds heading into added time gave Waterford hope.

Kiely then landed a free to level it for the first time and then Gavin Fives popped up from corner-back with a fine sole effort that saw Waterford to a thrilling victory.

Scorers - Waterford: M Kiely 2-5 (2f, 2' 65), S Keating, C MacCraith (1 s/l) 0-2 each P Leevy (1f), D Byrne, C Kavanagh, G Fives 0-1 each Tipperary: J Devaney 0-7 (6fs), S Hayes 2-0, D Ryan 1-0, K O'Kelly 0-2

Waterford - D Beecher; G Fives, R Furlong, J O Floinn; S Fitzgerald, C Wadding, M Kiely; R Tierney, K Mahony; C Keating, O O Ceallaigh, T Loftus; C MacCraith, P Leevy, J Power Subs: S Henley for Fitzgerald (h-t), A Organ for Loftus (38), C Kavanagh for Leevy (45), G Corbett for Mahony (48), D Byrne for Keating (48)

Tipperary - A Browne; C O'Dwyer, C Whelan, K Hayes; J Ryan, F Purcell, S Phelan; M Hackett, J Campion; D Ryan, J Morrissey, K O'Kelly; K Maher, S Hayes, J Devaney Subs: C O'Farrell for Morrissey (h-t), M O'Shea for Maher (45), B O'Connor for Phelan (55), O Larkin for Hackett (55), R Renehan for Hayes (58).

Ref - R McGann (Clare)

Irish Independent

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