Sport Hurling

Sunday 17 December 2017

Absent stars thwart Dubs

John Greene

John Greene

What a pity that we will not get to see a full-strength Dublin side take on Tipperary in the All-Ireland hurling semi-final at Croke Park this afternoon.

True, those Dublin players who take the field will not be found wanting in terms of courage and effort but, just as we saw with Waterford last week, that is unlikely to be anything other than an irritant to the reigning champions.

Tipperary and Kilkenny are now operating at a level so far removed from the rest that the hurling championship has lost its appeal. We must wait all summer for the one true contest, deprived of meaningful action. Like last year, it now seems that only a classic final can put any kind of a sheen on this year's championship.

Which is why it's so disappointing that Dublin are missing so many key first-choice players through injury today. You get the feeling that with a full deck to deal from, Anthony Daly would have his team well primed to give Tipperary a real run for their money.

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