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Posts Tagged ‘ Brian Cody ’

Early Action Indicates Exciting Hurling Season Ahead

Hurling-GAA

Nowlan Park played host to the clash of Kilkenny and Tipperary last weekend. Unlike the international Six Nations game between Wales and France, the organisers in Kilkenny opted to play with the roof open. The storm hit frame of the old stand was all that was left and it’s skeletal remains proved to be an eerie backdrop to what turned out to be an enthralling battle between these closest of rivals. Ireland may have lost narrowly to the ‘auld enemy’ in London at the weekend and for much of this game, it looked like Kilkenny were going to follow suit.

An exhibition of goal taking from both sides kept the crowd involved until the very last minutes. If this were a sixty minute game, well then Tipperary would have just about done enough but it wasn’t and those last ten minutes proved more than fruitful for the home team. It looked from early on that Kilkenny would be put to the sword by a more accurate Tipperary. The storm that had done so much damage in Kilkenny the week previous was only playing second fiddle to the damage that Tipperary forward Seamus Callanan and his team mates were inflicting on the Kilkenny defence. After just fourteen minutes on the clock, Tipperary had amassed 3-3 on the scoreboard. It must be said that Tipperary were playing with a strong breeze behind their backs for the first half but their goals came from some very poor Kilkenny defending. Tipperary will be kicking themselves this morning that they managed to let a ten point lead disappear in front of their very eyes. The same two teams competed in the League Final in Nowlan Park last year, with the same winners emerging. They also played in the All Ireland qualifiers at the same venue in 2013 and so the Tipperary supporters and players will not want to return anytime soon. Continue reading

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Fitting Finale To Great Championship As Clare Topple Cork In Thriller

clare

Clare 5-16 Cork 3-16

The most exciting championship in living memory deserved a fitting final and by god did we get it. The drawn game three weeks had everything or so we taught. What was served up to us on Saturday evening was a credit to both Clare and Cork and surpassed the hopes of the neutral who had feared an also-ran replay. Those fears were quickly diminished as late replacement and soon-to-be poster boy of Clare, Shane O Donnell scored a hat trick of goals inside the first twenty minutes. Add to this a 20 metre free from Cork goalkeeper Anthony Nash that he blasted past 12 Clare players on the line which was in itself box office viewing. Clare had stretched to an eight point lead with half time fast approaching but a determined Cork importantly managed to claw into that lead before the break leaving just three points in it at the interval.

The second half began as the first finished, fast, frantic and highly intense. Cork came back in the second half with a few hammer blows and drew it level, Clare at that stage responded like a team of 27- or 28-year-olds with four All-Ireland medals in their back pocket, who knew how not to panic and knew how to close the deal. Yet that came from a bunch of young and relatively inexperienced hurlers. Continue reading

Hurling – Cork & Clare Progress As Cats Run Out Of Lives

Is It The End Of An Era?

Is It The End Of An Era?

Cork 0-19 Kilkenny 0-14 

Cork ended Kilkenny’s reign as All-Ireland champions in Thurles on Sunday as the cats finally ran out of lives and for the first time in seventeen years failed to make the semi-final of the championship. Cork march on to play Dublin while Kilkenny now have plenty to ponder, as they will no doubt attempt to bounce back next year. The big moment of the game came shortly before half time when Kilkenny superstar and talisman Henry Shefflin was sent off for a second bookable offence. Both cautions were soft but unarguable under the rulebook. Continue reading

Hurling Championship Comes Alive

If people didn’t already know it they certainly know it now, the 2013 National Hurling Championship is alive, kicking and well underway.

The three scheduled games over the weekend gave us everything the neutral could want this weekend. The “end-to-end draw”, “the nearly upset but brave & gutsy effort” and “the upset”. Continue reading

Battle For Hurling Supremacy Commences

Liam MacCarthy 25609c13aIts that time of year again, evenings are long with the smell of cut grass in the air and when the hurler on the ditch is louder than ever with opinion and complaint on the year ahead. This Sunday sees the start of the 2013 Hurling Championship (with no disrespect to the lesser counties which have battled it out in recent weeks) with Clare and Waterford travelling to Tom Semples field in Thurles to battle it out for a place in the Munster semi-final and a crack at Cork. Both these sides have genuine provincial aspirations and hope that with some luck could be their year to climb the steps of the Hogan Stand. Tipperary, Cork, Limerick, Kilkenny, Dublin & Galway will have similar aspirations but outside these counties the rest only harbour thoughts during night hours with eyes wide asleep. Continue reading

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