Saturday 19 October 2019

'They delivered in buckets and spade'- John Mullane praises Galway's attack for stepping up in 'fortress Nowlan Park'

Galway's Conor Whelan fires in a shot under pressure from Kilkenny's Huw Lawlo. Photo: Sportsfile
Galway's Conor Whelan fires in a shot under pressure from Kilkenny's Huw Lawlo. Photo: Sportsfile

John Morley

Galway went down to Nowlan Park after receiving scathing criticism about their attack without their spiritual leader Joe Canning, but Micheal Donoghue's men showed they pose serious danger in attack.

Galway have reasserted themselves as prime players in the hunt for Liam MacCarthy after their steely one-point victory against Kilkenny in Nowlan Park.

Despite a late charge form Kilkenny, in a match that saw two Cats and one Galway man see red cards, Donoghue's men held on for a season-saving win.

Mullane admitted that the win came as a shock to him, considering they almost lost to Wexford, but were saved by Cathal Dubar's missed goal opportunity.

"It was an incredible performance, an incredible match. You've got to give it up to Galway," said Mullane on The Throw-In podcast, in association with Bord Gáis Energy.

"I was there for the Wexford game in Salthill, I couldn't have foreseen that result yesterday, but the match unfolded in the perfect manner for Micheal Donoghue."

The Waterford legend praised the Galway forwards for showing that they have serious All-Ireland credentials, even without Joe Canning in their arsenal.

"Cathal Mannion, Jason Flynn, Brian Concannon, Conor Whelan, all the lads that you wanted to deliver going down to fortress Nowlan Park, they delivered in buckets and spades," Mullane continued.

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"They're in a fantastic position [in the Leinster Championship]."

The Leinster round robin format has left it all to play for going into the final weekend, with the possibility of Galway crashing out of the championship if they lose to Dublin and Kilkenny and Wexford draw, with Galway losing out on scoring difference.

With the limelight on the Munster championship this year, ironically the Leinster championship has been the most competitive and Mullane believes Galway, Kilkenny, Wexford and Dublin are all capable of progressing in the All-Ireland series, should they advance from the province.

"Any of those four teams on a given day are capable of doing anything. You wouldn't rule out Dublin overturning Galway at the weekend, [Parnell Park] is still a tough venue to go to," he said.

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