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Senior stars shine in historic Leinster title win for Galway against the champions

The Tribesmen have won their first Intermediate title in Leinster.

Brian Molloy hit 1-4 for Galway.
Brian Molloy hit 1-4 for Galway.
Image: Lorraine O'Sullivan/INPHO

Galway 1-20
Wexford 0-11

Anthony Cunningham’s second-string announced their maiden year in the Leinster Intermediate Hurling championship in style as they ousted title-holders Wexford on a splendid summer’s evening at O’Moore Park, Portlaoise

The Tribesmen had skipped past Kilkenny in the provincial semi-final by 3-22 to 1-17 and the signs were looking ominous for the Model County within ten minutes of the throw-in.

Galway romped to an early lead of 1-4 to 0-1 and from then on they sustained that gap with little difficulty, marching on to face Cork in the All-Ireland final on Saturday, 8 August.

After the impressive pair of Tadhg Haran and wing-back Paul Flaherty had sandwiched dependable Wexford freetaker Joe Kelly’s opening effort, Galway performed a slick movement of play to tighten their grip on the initiative.

Darragh Burke delivered the ball to Shane Moloney, who selflessly gifted Brian Molloy possession and the Leitrim-Kilnadeema clubman rattled Dermot Flynn’s net.

A closing trio of points had the Tribesmen ahead by 1-9 to 0-3 at the interval, even though Brian Molloy rued a golden chance to grab his second goal.

Matters went from bad to worse for Wexford within three minutes of the restart as John Leacy saw red for his challenge on Darragh Burke.

Nevertheless, Seamus Murphy’s men still made a fist at a comeback as they out-scored the eventual victors by six points to one between the 40th and 47th minutes, which pulled back their deficit to 1-13 to 0-10.

Although they hit a total of 13 wides, Galway soon distinguished any hopes of a comeback as their final rally of five points wrapped up a comprehensive victory for the maroon-clad men.

Towering goalkeeper James Skehill gladly accepted his county’s first intermediate title from Leinster GAA chairman John Horan.

Galway scorers: Brian Molloy 1-4, Shane Moloney 0-4 (2 fs, 1 ’65), Paul Flaherty and Tadhg Haran 0-3 each, Ronan O’Meara 0-2, Éanna Burke, Paul Flaherty, Dan Nevin, Conor Whelan 0-1 each.

Wexford scorers: Joe Kelly 0-8 (6 fs), Jim Berry, Tommy Dwyer, Michael O’Hanlon 0-1 each.

Galway

1. James Skehill (capt.)

2. Colm Flynn
3. Darragh O’Donoghue
4. Adrian Tuohy

5. Paul Flaherty
6. Darragh Burke
7. Shane Cooney

8. Kevin McHugo
9. Dean Higgins

10. Eamon Brannigan
11. Tadhg Haran
12. Éanna Burke

13. Brian Molloy
14. Conor Whelan
15. Shane Moloney

Subs:

Dan Nevin for McHugo (36)
Ronan O’Meara for Tuohy (temporary, 40-47)
Jason Kennedy for Brannigan (48)
Ronan O’Meara for Burke (48)
Emmet Mahony for Cooney (56)
Barry Keane for O’Donoghue (59)

Wexford

1. Dermot Flynn

2. Brendan Mulligan
3. James Breen
4. James Tonks

5. Pat Kenny
6. Michael O’Regan
7. Paul Nolan

8. Tommy Dwyer
9. Mark Moloney

10. Barry Carton
11. John Lacey
12. Joe Kelly

13. Tomás O’Leary
14. Michael O’Hanlon
15. Jim Berry

Subs:

Tomás Waters for Michael O’Regan (36)
Tomás Mahon for Moloney (40)
Jamie Reck for Carton (46)
Walter Furlong for O’Hanlon (52)
Johnny Dwyer for Kelly (60)

Referee: Peter Burke (Kilkenny).

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Michael Dwyer

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