Sport Hurling

Tuesday 20 February 2018

Galway opt to leave out St Thomas' contingent for must-win tie

Cliona Foley

Cliona Foley

Galway have left out the stars of the St Thomas' team as they retain the same 15 that started against Cork last week for tomorrow's must-win clash with Waterford in what is being billed the Allianz Hurling League's 'Super Sunday.'

David Burke, Conor Cooney, James Regan and Darragh Burke were all part of the county senior panel last year and sought a week's rest after their All-Ireland club-winning heroics.

They were expected to return to training midweek to give the county a particularly timely boost ahead of hurling's final round of games, but it has emerged that they haven't as yet trained with Galway.

David Burke is reportedly carrying a knock and the fact that St Thomas' were involved in an U-21 championship match yesterday also affected player availability.

Avoid

In the precariously balanced Division 1A, where any of the six teams involved could still either make the semi-finals or get relegated, Galway must win in Walsh Park to avoid facing a relegation play-off for the second year in a row.

Victory for the Tribesmen could yet still nick them one of the three available semi-final spots, provided neither of the other two games (Tipperary v Clare, Kilkenny v Cork) finishes level.

But they are, technically, also the only team in Division 1A for whom a win won't guarantee a top-three spot.

Limerick, who have already secured a place in the Division 1B final, have named an experimental side to face Wexford, with Nicky Quaid, Declan Hannon, Kevin Downes, Graeme Mulcahy, Tom Condon and Stephen Walsh all on the bench.

Injury-plagued Wexford have an outside chance of making the top two, but their hopes are not helped by the enforced absence of Tomas Waters (bruised ribs and kidney), PJ Nolan (ankle) and Jack Guiney (neck injury).

Dublin, who face Carlow and look likeliest to join Limerick in the battle for the last semi-final spot, have also rung the changes and include Stephen Hiney and Ryan O'Dwyer for the first time this year.

LIMERICK (SH v Wexford) – A Murphy; A Dempsey, R McCarthy, M Carmody; C King, W McNamara, T Ryan; C Allis, J Ryan; S Dowling, P Ahern, N Moran; S Tobin, T Quaid, A Breen.

WEXFORD (SH) – N Breen; B Kenny, A Shore, C Kenny; J Tonks, R Kehoe, E Doyle; D Redmond, H Kehoe; G Sinnott, P Morris, E Quigley; G Moore, R Jacob, C O'Shaughnessy.

Kerry (SH v Derry) – B Rochford; P O'Keeffe, L Boyle, T Barrett; D O'Connell, T Murnane, B Brosnan; J Griffin, D Dineen; D Collins, G O'Brien, B O'Leary; W O'Dywer, A Boyle, S Nolan.

Galway (SH v Waterford) – C Callanan; J Coen, K Hynes, F Moore; Donoghue, D Collins, J Cooney; I Tannian, A Smyth; A Harte, J Glynn, D Glennon; C Donnellan, J Canning, D Hayes.

MEath (SF v Antrim) – P O'Rourke; D Keogan, B Menton, C Young; C Lenihan, K Reilly, D Dalton; B Meade, C Gillespie; D Larkin, G Reilly, P Byrne; E Wallace, B Farrell, M Newman.

Irish Independent

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