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Dublin: 6 °C Thursday 26 April, 2018


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There’s a mouth-watering afternoon of hurling in store on Jones’ Rd and it got under way with the All-Ireland Minor Hurling Championship semi-final between Kilkenny and defending champions Waterford.

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Let’s do this.

Come tea-time we’ll know a lot more about this hurling season. Kilkenny and Limerick face off in a finely-balanced senior semi-final at 3.30pm at Croke Park.

But first, Cats fans will watch their minors take on neighbours Waterford at HQ.

Throw in is at 1.30pm and we’re going minute-by-minute as usual.

Earlier this week, both management teams named unchanged sides.

The Déise beat Dublin comfortably in the quarter-finals with Shane Ryan top-scoring with 2-1 for Waterford. The captain will once again lead the line today. Here’s the starting XVs:

1. Darren Brennan (St Lachtain’s)

2. Conor Doheny (Dicksboro)
3. Conor Delaney (Erin’s Own)
4. Cathal McGrath (John Locke’s)

5. Pat Lyng (Rower-Instioge)
6. Jason Cleere (Bennetsbridge)
7. Darragh Joyce (capt, Rower-Instioge)

8. Conor Browne (James Stephens)
9. Luke Scanlon (James Stephens)

10. Sean Morrissey (Bennettsbridge)
11. Ross Butler (O’Loughlin Gaels)
12. Billy Ryan (Graigue Ballycallan)

13. Alan Murphy (Glenmore)
14. Liam Blanchfield (Bennettsbridge)
15. Ronan Corcoran (Ballyhale Shamrocks)

1. Billy Nolan (Roanmore)

2. David Prendergast (Lismore)
3. Eddie Hayden (Ballygunner)
4. Michael Cronin (Ardmore)

5. Conor Prunty (Abbeyside)
6. Conor Gleeson (Fourmilewater)
7. Jack Mullaney (Stradbally)

8. Darragh Lyons (Dungarvan)
9. Andy Molumby (Cappoquin)

10. Shane Bennett (Ballysaggart)
11. Colm Roche (Shamrocks)
12. Cormac Curran (Brickey Rangers)

13. Peter Hogan (Ballygunner)
14. Patrick Curran (Dungarvan)
15. Shane Ryan (capt, De Le Salle)

We’re just over ten minutes to throw-in but it’s worth remembering this is the second year in a row these two have met in the minor semi-finals.

Last year, Waterford’s two-point victory (2-12 to 0-16) win Kilkenny put them on course for their first win at this grade since 1948.

Since then, Derek Lyons has taken over from Sean Power as coach but has taken the Déise back into the final four.

No change for Waterford in the build up but Tullaroan’s Tommy Walsh (18) comes in for Conor Doheny (2) in the Kilkenny full-back line.

Walsh was part of the St. Kieran’s side that lifted the Croke Cup earlier this year.

The teams are in their huddles and we’re almost ready to get under way.

Today’s referee, Wicklow’s John Keenan gets us started.

Waterford 0-1 Kilkenny 0-0 

2mins – Little to report so far. Both teams have had chances but hit bad wides before Andy Molumby gets the games first score.

Waterford 0-1 Kilkenny 0-1

4mins – It doesn’t take long for Alan Murphy to equalise for the cats after good work from Liam Blanchfield.

Kilkenny 0-2 Waterford 0-1 

6mins – Blanchfield has the game’s first goal chance but is smothered by the Waterford defence and the opportunity disappears.

The Bennettsbridge man makes up for it moments later with his first point of the game though.

Kilkenny 0-3 Waterford 0-1 

8mins – Kilkenny now have three wides to their name but Waterford have barely touched the sliotar in an attacking position so far and are unable to punish them.

Down the other end, Sean Morrissey points a lovely score.

Kilkenny 0-3 Waterford 0-2 

11mins – Another goal chance, this time for Waterford but Patrick Curran’s effort dribbles wide under pressure.

Cormac Curran points their second free of the game though to bring the gap back to one.

Kilkenny 0-4 Waterford 0-2 

13mins – Alan Murphy scores the game’s first free with a long range effort to double Kilkenny’s lead.

Kilkenny 0-5 Waterford 0-2 

15mins – Kilkenny now three clear thanks to Ronan Corcoran.

Kilkenny 0-6 Waterford 0-2 

15mins – Sean Morrissey with the score of the game from distance.

Kilkenny 0-7 Waterford 0-3 

18mins – Patrick Curran’s free narrows the gap but a foul on Luke Scanlon allows Alan Murphy to tap over an easy free of his own.

Kilkenny 0-7 Waterford 0-3 

20mins – Kilkenny could be out of sight here but have now amassed six wides, double Waterford’s total of three.

Kilkenny 0-7 Waterford 0-4 

21mins - Andy Molumby has his second score of the day and Waterford are back within three.

Kilkenny 0-9 Waterford 0-4 

22mins - Another goal chance for the Déise but Shane Bennett can’t convert from a tight angle.

Down the other end, Conor Browne has his first point of the day, followed quickly by a Billy Ryan point.

Kilkenny 0-9 Waterford 0-5 

26mins - Shane Ryan has his first score of the day and Waterford really need him to start producing on the scoreboard if they’re to come back into this one.

Kilkenny 0-9 Waterford 0-6 

28mins - Shane Bennett reduces the gap to three again with two minutes to go until half-time.

Kilkenny 0-10 Waterford 0-6 

30min – Brilliant play by Luke Scanlon in the middle of the park wins Kilkenny another scoreable free and Alan Murphy duly obliges with his third score from place balls.

Half-time -

Kilkenny 0-10 Waterford 0-6

Kilkenny deserve their four point lead at the break as they look to reverse last year’s semi-final result but both sides will have to make better decisions in front of the posts as they have amassed eight wides each.

Scorers for Kilkenny: Alan Murphy 0-4 (0-3f), Sean Morrissey 0-2, Liam Blanchfield, Ronan Corcoran, Conor Browne, Billy Ryan 0-1 each.

Scorers for Waterford: Andy Molumby 0-2, Patrick Curran 0-1 (0-1f), Shane Bennett, Cormac Curran, Shane Ryan 0-1 each.

The second half is about to get under way.

Kilkenny 0-10 Waterford 0-7

31mins – Patrick Curran opens the second half scoring with his second free of the game.

Kilkenny 0-11 Waterford 0-7

31mins – Brilliant save from Billy Nolan denies the Cats their first goal of the game. Luke Scanlon’s effort looked destined for the back of the net but the Roanmore man had other ideas.

Alan Murphy points the ’65.

Kilkenny 0-11 Waterford 1-7

32mins – GOAL!

Waterford are back in the game.

Shane Bennet’s driving run in followed by a brilliant finish and Darren Brennan had no chance in the Kilkenny goal.

Kilkenny 0-11 Waterford 1-8

33mins – Curran’s first score from play brings the sides level. There’s a different intensity about the defending champions in the this second half.

Kilkenny 0-12 Waterford 1-8

38mins – He’s only just come on for Billy Ryan but 21. John Walsh has restored Kilkenny’s lead with a much needed point.

Kilkenny 0-12 Waterford 1-9

41mins – Andy Molumby points but Waterford could very nearly have had another goal after Patrick Curran’s ’65 rattled off the woodwork.

Kilkenny 0-14 Waterford 1-9

44mins – Ronan Corcoran restores Kilkenny’s single point lead, the Shamrocks’ man second score of the day. Another Alan Murphy free doubles the gap.

Kilkenny 0-14 Waterford 1-10

48mins – 21. Shane Murray is the latest change for Waterford and Jack Mullaney makes way and it’s another substitute 17. Eddie Meaney who has scored the Déise’s first point in nearly ten minutes.

Kilkenny 0-15 Waterford 1-10

52mins – Blanchfield has his second point of the day for Kilkenny. It’s been a relatively quiet performance from the Bennettsbridge man but his two scores are the difference between the teams at the moment.

Kilkenny 0-15 Waterford 1-11

55mins – Patrick Curran reduces the gap to a single score.

Kilkenny 0-15 Waterford 1-12

56mins – And the defending champions are level, Curran with another free. Four minutes to go here.

Waterford 1-13 Kilkenny 0-15 

57mins – And Cormac Curran gives Waterford their first lead since the third minute. What a second-half from the Déise.

Waterford 1-13 Kilkenny 0-16 

60mins – John Walsh goes for goal when he should have taken the equalising point.

Alan Murphy has the ’65 to tie things up…and it’s over. We’re level in injury time.

Full-time -

Waterford 1-13 Kilkenny 0-16 

We’ll have extra time in the minor semi-final as the sides can’t be separated in the first 60 minutes.

Scorers for Kilkenny: Alan Murphy 0-7 (0-4f, 0-2’65), Sean Morrissey, Liam Blanchfield and Ronan Corcoran 0-2 each, Conor Browne, Billy Ryan and John Walsh 0-1 each.

Scorers for Waterford: Patrick Curran 0-5 (0-4f), Shane Bennett 1-1, Andy Molumby 0-3, Cormac Curran 0-2, Shane Ryan and Eddie Meaney 0-1 each.

And extra-time is under way.

Kilkenny 0-17 Waterford 1-13

ET 2mins - Liam Blanchfield looked like he was thinking goal but his point is the first score of extra-time and Kilkenny lead by one.

Worth noting the 0-16 Kilkenny scored is the same total they amassed against Waterford at this stage last year in a losing performance.

Kilkenny 0-17 Waterford 1-13

ET 5mins - Brilliant defending from Michael Cronin denies Kilkenny a certain goal.

Alan Murphy sends the resulting ’65 wide.

Kilkenny 0-17 Waterford 1-14

ET 8mins – Patrick Curran taps over a simple free – his fifth of the day – and we’re level once more.

Kilkenny 0-18 Waterford 1-14

ET 9mins – Alan Murphy restores Kilkenny’s lead with an almost identical free.

Half-time extra-time

Kilkenny 0-19 Waterford 1-14

ET 10mins – Another Murphy ’65 doubles the lead as the half-time whistle goes in extra-time.

Scorers for Kilkenny: Alan Murphy 0-9 (0-5f, 0-3’65), Liam Blanchfield 0-3 Sean Morrissey and Ronan Corcoran 0-2 each, Conor Browne, Billy Ryan and John Walsh 0-1 each.

Scorers for Waterford: Patrick Curran 0-6 (0-5f), Shane Bennett 1-1, Andy Molumby 0-3, Cormac Curran 0-2, Shane Ryan and Eddie Meaney 0-1 each.

The second half of extra-time has started.

Kilkenny 0-19 Waterford 1-14

ET 12mins – Peter Hogan opens up the second half with Waterford’s 16th wide of the game.

Kilkenny 0-20 Waterford 1-14

ET 12mins – Murphy brings his total to 0-10 – 0-8 of which have come from place balls -and Waterford need a goal to keep their title defence alive.

Kilkenny 1-20 Waterford 1-14

ET 15mins – GOAL!

And that’s the game probably, John Walsh boots the sliotar home and Kilkenny lead by six with six minutes to play.

Kilkenny 1-21 Waterford 1-14

ET 17mins – Murphy points yet another free for Kilkenny.

Kilkenny 1-22 Waterford 1-14

ET 18mins – Blanchfield makes it an eight point game from play.

Kilkenny 1-23 Waterford 1-14

ET 20mins – Blanchfield again and there’s a nine point gap. Kilkenny have been lethal in extra-time.

Full-time extra-time

Kilkenny 1-23 Waterford 1-14

It’s all over and Kilkenny are deserving winners. Waterford scored just one point from the 57th minute of normal time to the end of extra-time and so it’s the Cats who’ll contest the minor decider.

Alan Murphy rightly picks up the man of the match award for his 11-point haul.

Scorers for Kilkenny: Alan Murphy 0-11 (0-7f, 0-3’65), Liam Blanchfield 0-5, John Walsh 1-1, Sean Morrissey and Ronan Corcoran 0-2 each, Conor Browne and Billy Ryan 0-1 each.

Scorers for Waterford: Patrick Curran 0-6 (0-5f), Shane Bennett 1-1, Andy Molumby 0-3, Cormac Curran 0-2, Shane Ryan and Eddie Meaney 0-1 each.

About the author:

Steve O'Rourke


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