Waterford defeated Tipperary by 0-18 to 1-13 in the Munster GAA ESB Minor Hurling Championship Final on Sunday at Semple Stadium.
Rising star O’Neill shines as Deise end 17-year wait
By Jackie Cahill for the Irish Independent newspaper
Monday July 13 2009
WATERFORD’S minors salvaged glory from Munster final day as they captured the provincial hurling crown for the first time in 17 years. The 1992 vintage spawned future stars such as Tom Feeney and Paul Flynn and on yesterday’s evidence, a new star is born in the form of Martin O’Neill. The Mount Sion midfielder flashed over 0-10, including six points in the first half as the Deise led by 0-11 to 0-8 at half-time. Tipperary were the fancied team before the game having produced a clinical performance against Cork in the semi-final replay but Mark O’Leary’s charges fell flat on the big day and must now regroup for an All-Ireland quarter-final.
That will take place in a fortnight but Tipp will take heart from the fact that in 2006, they claimed All-Ireland glory through the back door having lost the Munster final. Waterford march on to the All-Ireland semi-finals and this victory marked the county’s fourth in the Munster minor championship, following on from previous successes in 1929, 1948 and 1992. Tipp scored the game’s only goal but that was a consolation strike from John O’Dwyer in stoppage-time, from a 20m free. With eight minutes remaining, O’Dwyer had missed a penalty with his side six points in arrears and overall, it was a disappointing day for Tipp’s six starting forwards, who managed just four points from play. In the first half, Waterford led by 0-5 to 0-2 but the sides were level at 0-7 apiece with 23 minutes on the watch before the winners finished the half strongly for a three-point lead.
Seconds after the restart, Waterford ‘keeper Stephen O’Keeffe made a magnificent save at full-strength to keep out O’Dwyer’s effort, which appeared destined for the top corner. Ronan Cahill went close at the other end five minutes later but his overhead pull was smuggled to safety by Tipp netminder Paul Ryan. The Premier County missed another good chance 11 minutes from the end as David Butler kicked a scruffy effort wide but after moving 0-17 to 0-11 clear with 10 minutes left, Waterford were never unduly troubled.
O’Neill was the hero of the hour on the scoreboard but this was a team effort from Waterford with five of the six starting forwards scoring. Finan Murray sent over a beautiful sideline cut in first-half injury-time as Waterford decorated Semple Stadium with some fine points.
Scorers — Waterford: M O’Neill 0-10 (6f, 1 ’65), P Mahoney (1f), P Prendergast 0-2 each, F Murray, B O’Halloran, R Cahill, I Galgey 0-1 each. Tipperary: J O’Dwyer 1-6 (1-5f), R Gleeson 0-2, A Hogan, A Cleere, S Curran, E Murray, T Butler 0-1 each.
WATERFORD — S O’Keeffe; L Egan, T Costello, M Wyse; J Dee, P Mahoney, D Fives; F Murray, M O’Neill; P Mahoney, B O’Halloran, R Cahill; P Prendergast, J Dillon, I Galgey. Subs: K Moore for Cahill (59).
TIPPERARY — P Ryan; A Ryan, L Butler, J Meagher; W Ryan, B Stapleton, A Hogan; A Cleere, D Maher; R Gleeson, P Heffernan, S Curran; D Collins, J O’Dwyer, E Murray. Subs: T Butler for D Maher (40), M O’Brien for Collins (43), S Maher for A Ryan (50), P Heffernan for D Butler (56).
Ref — C Lyons (Cork)
O’Neill and O’Keeffe help orchestrate Waterford coup
From the Irish Times newspaper
Munster MHC final
Waterford 0-18 Tipperary 1-13
MARTIN O’NEILL led by example as outsiders Waterford shocked hot-favourites Tipperary to win their first Munster minor hurling title in 17 years at Semple Stadium yesterday. Midfielder O’Neill finished with 10 points to his name. He was not the only star as goalkeeper Stephen O’Keeffe made three top-class saves to deny Tipperary goals at vital stages. Wind-assisted in the first half, Waterford made all the early running and led by 0-11 to 0-8 at the break, O’Neill bagging six of those scores, including three from play. Waterford certainly seemed to be coping with the conditions better than their opponents for whom John O’Dwyer had four points in the half. And, a brace from centre forward Brian O’Halloran helped to move them further in front before the interval with Finan Murray cutting a beautiful sideline over the bar to ensure a three-point advantage.
Tipperary needed to raise their game in the second half but it was Waterford who continued to set the pace. By the 41st minute they had extended their lead to six points, 0-15 to 0-9. Tipperary rallied briefly with points by Eanna Murray and John O’Dwyer but had a goal chance wasted by David Butler. However, Waterford held their nerve and were 0-5 clear as the game went into injury time. A goal by John O’Dwyer from a 20-metre free in the 61st minute came too late to deny Waterford their moment of glory. It was a win that gave Waterford their fourth title in the grade. While O’Neill and O’Keeffe were the stars of the show, the displays of Tyrone Costelloe, John Dea, Paudie Mahoney and Ian Galgey were also very impressive. And so Tipperary suffered defeat in the final for the second year running. Their performance fell well below expectations but Paul Ryan, Liam Butler, Adrian Cleere, Ruairi Gleeson and John O’Dwyer worked very hard to turn the game in their favour.
WATERFORD: S O’Keeffe; L Egan, T Costelloe, M Wyse; J Dee, P Mahoney, D Fives; F Murray (0-1), M O’Neill (0-10); P Mahoney (0-1), B O’Halloran (0-2), R Cahill (0-1), P Prendergast (0-1), J Dillon (0-1), I Galgey (0-1). Subs: K Moore for R Cahill.
TIPPERARY: P Ryan; A Ryan, K Butler, J Meagher; W Ryan, B Stapleton, A Hogan (0-1); E Murray (0-1), D Maher; J O’Dwyer (1-7), S Curran (0-1), A Cleere (0-1), D Collins, R Gleeson (0-2), D Butler. Subs: T Butler for D Maher; M O’Brien for D Collins; P Heffernan for D Butler.
Referee: C Lyons (Cork)
Roll of Honour