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New boss off to winning start as Galway defeat Dublin to reach Walsh Cup final

Shane O’Neill saw his Galway team win out at Parnell Park.

Galway 0-19
Dublin 0-18

Paul Keane reports from Parnell Park

SHANE O’NEILL IS up and running as Galway’s new senior hurling manager with a gutsy win at Parnell Park to secure a Walsh Cup final place next weekend amounting to a positive start.

oisin-orourke-and-david-glennon Dublin's Oisin O'Rorke in action against Galway's David Glennon. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

The Tribesmen trailed by four points after half an hour in what was a return to the venue where they lost to Dublin last June and exited the Leinster championship.

But with an experimental side containing just four starters from that championship game – Gearoid McInerney, Johnny Coen, Aidan Harte and Cathal Mannion – they were the better team from there on and just about deserved the narrow win.

Some early rustiness to Galway’s play was probably to be expected given that it was O’Neill’s debut with a new look side containing greenhorns like Diarmuid Kilcommins and Declan Cronin while Dublin, in turn, had already beaten Westmeath, Carlow and Laois to qualify for the last four.

Joe Canning and Conor Whelan were named among the Galway substitutes but weren’t used and could come into contention for next weekend’s final against Wexford.

sean-bleahane-and-david-glennon-celebrate-ate-the-final-whistle Galway's Sean Bleahane and David Glennon at the final whistle.

As for Dublin, they won’t be overly concerned about the battling defeat given that manager Mattie Kenny was without 14 players due to the Fitzgibbon Cup.

So it was a different Dublin team that took to the pitch from the team that dismantled Laois at the same ground on Thursday evening though, initially at least, they were on top and led 0-7 to 0-3 after 17 minutes.

Free-taker Oisin O’Rorke scored three of those early points while speedy Eamon Dillon showed flashes of his ability as he twice escaped Cronin for scores.

That four-point margin remained between the sides after 30 minutes with O’Rorke now on six points for the afternoon.

Galway would finish the half strong, reeling off five points in a row including two from Mannion who suddenly came alive with back to back scores to lead 0-12 to 0-11 at the break.

It was the first time they were in front but they remained in that position all the way until full-time despite never being any more than two points clear.

The second-half was a back and forth with neither team, remarkably, able to hit two unanswered points in a row. Instead, they slugged it out, point for point, and Galway remained ahead with that one-point lead at the end.

O’Neill took advantage of the unlimited substitutions rule to make eight switches throughout the game while Danny Sutcliffe came on for Dublin, making his seasonal return and clipping a nice score as the game petered towards what seemed its inevitable conclusion.

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shane-oneill-and-mattie-kenny-shake-hands-after-the-game Managers Shane O'Neill and Mattie Kenny shake hands after the game. Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Scoreres for Galway: Tadhg Haran 0-8 (0-7f), Cathal Mannion 0-3 (0-1f), Diarmuid Kilcommins, Sean Bleahan and Johnny Coen 0-2 each, TJ Brennan and Conor Walsh 0-1 each.

Scorers for Dublin: Oisin O’Rorke 0-10 (0-8f), Eamon Dillon and John Hetherton 0-2 each, Chris Crummey, Cian Boland, Marc Howard and Danny Sutcliffe 0-1 each.

Galway

16. Eanna Murphy (Tommy Larkins)

4. Declan Cronin (Cappataggle)
3. Ronan Burke (Turloughmore)
2. Jack Grealish (Gort)

7. Johnny Coen (Loughrea)
6. Gearoid McInerney (Oranmore Maree)
5. TJ Brennan (Clarinbridge)

8. Sean Linnane (Turloughmore)
9. Aidan Harte (Gort)

10. Diarmuid Kilcommons (Annaghdown)
11. Cathal Mannion (Ahascragh Fohenagh)
12. Thomas Monaghan (Craughwell)

15. David Glennon (Mullagh)
13. Sean Bleahane (Ahascragh Fohenagh)
26. Tadhg Haran (Liam Mellows)

Subs

19. Paul Killeen (Tynagh Abbey Duniry) for Cronin (h/t)
17. Conor Walsh (Turloughmore) for Linnane (45)
22. Jack Coyne for Coen (45-48, blood)
18. Ronan O’Meara for Monaghan (52)
Coyne for Bleahane (52)
20. Mark Horan (Craughwell) for Brennan (56)
21. Jamie Holland (Turloughmore) for Burke (56)
Brennan for McInerney (65)
Bleahane for Haran (65)

Dublin

1. Sean Brennan (Cuala)

4. James Madden (Ballyboden St Enda’s)
3. Cian O’Callaghan (Cuala)
2. Andrew Dunphy (St Brigid’s)

6. Chris Crummey (Lucan Sarsfields)
5. Alex O’Neill (Round Tower, Clondalkin)
10. Tom Connolly (St Vincent’s)

9. Lorcan McMullan (Kilmacud Crokes)
11. Cian Boland (St Oliver Plunkett’s Eoghan Ruadh)

13. John Hetherton (St Vincent’s)
14. Oisin O’Rorke (Kilmacud Crokes)
17. Mark Schutte (Cuala)

12. Cian Derwin (Craobh Chiarain)
18. Marc Howard (Kilmacud Crokes)
15. Eamon Dillon (Naomh Fionnbarra)

Subs

8. Enda O’Donnell (Whitehall Colmcille) for Derwin (49)
23. Sean Moran (Cuala) for Madden (56)
22. Danny Sutcliffe (St Judes) for Schutte (60)
20. Mark Sweeney (St Vincent’s) for Howard (67)

Referee: Patrick Murphy (Carlow)

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About the author:

Paul Keane

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