Wednesday 22 November 2017

the game at a glance

Galway’s Joe Canning insists reaching
an All-Ireland semi-final would be a
'step in the right direction' for the team
Galway’s Joe Canning insists reaching an All-Ireland semi-final would be a 'step in the right direction' for the team

Man of the match

Joe Canning (Galway)

There were so many contenders in maroon in this game, but the choice is Canning, who scored 1-10 (1-3 from open play). His fourth-minute goal, which followed a catch and turn against Jackie Tyrrell, was hugely symbolic in setting the tone for the Galway blitz.

Turning point

None. Galway were rampant from the off in this encounter, subjecting Kilkenny to a level of torture they haven't experienced for a very long time.

Talking point

Galway 2-11 Kilkenny 0-1 after 30 minutes. It looked utterly impossible that Kilkenny would score just one point -- that from a free -- in a half hour of hurling. As for conceding 2-11 in the same period, that was new territory too.

Ref watch

Any wonder that footballers are frustrated by what they perceive as a different emphasis by referees? Referee James McGrath used his yellow card sparingly (four in all) in a game where the tackles flew in hard and often, occasionally quite high as well.

Magic moment

More a magic half-hour as a rampant Galway built up a 16-point lead in the opening 30 minutes of the game. Everything they touched turned to gold in a period where Kilkenny failed to impose themselves in any part of the field.

What they said

Anthony Cunningham (Galway


"We are delighted to be the first Galway team to win a Leinster final. It's great to have won it, but after this evening we'll be fully focused on the All-Ireland semi-final. We've had great days here in the past and not built on them. We need consistency -- that's the big challenge for us now."

Brian Cody (Kilkenny manager):

"I always said Galway were capable of beating us and we were capable of beating them on different days. They obviously got on top of the game very, very early and they were by far the better team and that's the way it works -- the better team always wins on the day."

Match statistics

Wides: Galway 11 (4 first half); Kilkenny 7 (2)

Frees: Galway 12 (8 first half); Kilkenny 20 (8)

Yellow cards: Galway 3 (K Hynes 38, J Coen 54, D Collins 55); Kilkenny 1 (B Hogan 46)

Red cards: Galway 0; Kilkenny 0

Attendance: 22,171

What next?

Galway have qualified for the All-Ireland semi-finals on August 12; Kilkenny play in the All-Ireland quarter-finals against qualifier winners on July 28.

Irish Independent

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