GAA Digest: Galway Shocks Kilkenny With Big Win, Clare Wins, Cork Wins, and GAA shorts
Whats happening on the GAA pitches in Ireland
Galway emerged as real contenders for the All-Ireland title when they shocked Kilkenny with a fully deserved win in the Leinster hurling final on Sunday.
The westerners never let the All-Ireland champions settle as they recorded their first ever Leinster title success with the shock of the hurling summer.
Manager Anthony Cunningham produced a tactical master plan to dethrone the champions as Galway recorded the 2-21 to 2-11 win.
Kilkenny simply had no answer to Galway’s whirlwind start and managed only four scores in the first half as they trailed by 2-12 to 0-4 at the interval.
But boss Cunningham was at pains to insist his team have a bigger goal to chase as they look for All-Ireland glory later this summer.
He told RTE Sport, “We’re delighted to have won Leinster. It’s the end of that competition for us today and it’s history. But we’re in a new series now which is the All-Ireland series and it’s knockout from here on out and we’re going to have to be ready for that.
“It was a great start against Kilkenny. We’ve been going well in training and we’ve put a huge amount of work into this.
“I think the guys have the skill and they have the hunger and they have the will to win and I just hope that from today they’ll learn as much as they can out there and use it to perfection the next day because we’ll need it.”
The Galway manager also had words of comfort for Kilkenny. “We haven’t seen the last of Kilkenny, and there’s a lot of big teams out there who will be now looking to go on and take our scalp the next day,” he said.
Kilkenny manager Brian Cody told RTE Sport that his team were “wiped out” by Galway as they experienced their first championship defeat since the 2010 All-Ireland final against Tipperary and their first defeat in Leinster in eight years.
“I said before the game that on any given day they could beat us and we could beat them,” said Cody. “Certainly, they beat us today, beat us convincingly. Obviously, in the first-half they wiped us out, if you like.
“We regrouped in the second half and took the fight to them and we were genuine to the very end. That’s sport, it’s very hard to explain these things and I don’t have the explanations, I don’t have the answers.”
Like his manager, Galway captain Fergal Moore has set his sights on the ultimate prize after downing the All-Ireland champions.
Moore said, “There’s only one cup that everyone wants to win at the start of the year when they go back training in January and that’s the Liam McCarthy.
“It’s hugely satisfying beating Kilkenny and winning Leinster. But the year can’t be about the Leinster title for Galway -- 2012 can’t be about making history in a Leinster final.”
Having conceded seven goals in their previous two games, Galway were determined to get their defensive house in order on Sunday. They were also intent on shutting Kilkenny out of the game from the outset.
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