All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Qualifiers Round 1 – Longford 2-14 Limerick 0-8

Longford defeated Limerick by 2-14 to 0-8 in the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Qualifiers Round 1 on Saturday in Glennon Brothers Pearse Park Longford.

Longford faith finds its reward

Longford 2-14 Limerick 0-09

By Brendan O’Brien for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Glenn Ryan has lauded his Longford players for refusing to follow the exodus to America and sticking with a team that, until this All-Ireland qualifier victory, had failed to win a competitive game all year. And the former Kildare star, whose five-year spell in charge may well have ended with defeat against Limerick two days ago, has also criticised players from other counties who have departed for the USA after provincial defeats. “It’s hugely important for the team,” he said. “There’s no disguising that fact. It has to be some sort of record to have gone as long as we have gone after playing what we have played without winning a game. “I wouldn’t put these lads up on a pedestal, but none of these fellas have f*****d off [unlike some players from] the Laoises, the Galways and Armaghs, teams that have greater, loftier ambitions and greater traditions than we have. These fellas stuck around.”

Prior to this, Longford had lost all seven of their Division 2 league games, as well as their opening championship engagement, to Wicklow. Their one success in six painful months had been a three-point defeat of UCD in January’s O’Byrne Cup. “It wasn’t easy but they stuck around,” said Ryan. “They didn’t go away. They didn’t go off to America looking for the sugar daddy or whatever is over there and if we hadn’t won it would have been a travesty for those fellas. “I’m not saying they were in any way perfect over the last few weeks but the fact that they were here and that they showed that respect to their team-mates and their clubs and their county, to not just drop everything at the drop of a hat and stay around, that is huge. That shouldn’t be underestimated. They should get the recognition they deserve for that because there is no fella should just drop everything and go at the first sign of things not going well and things weren’t going well for us for a long time.”

Limerick are among those counties to have waved goodbye to a handful of players as they migrated Stateside in recent months but, in every other way, their plight of late only equalled that of their hosts. Like Longford, they had suffered loss in their opening summer appointment and that heavy defeat to Cork, allied to the injury suffered by key forward Ian Ryan, had undone much of the good work done in securing promotion from Division 4. Yet Longford had their troubles with the loss through injury of key defender Michael Quinn as well as marksman-in-chief Brian Kavanagh who, ironically, is in the USA, albeit on a year-long sabbatical from work.

Few counties of Longford’s stature could survive such blows but, in full-forward Sean McCormack, they had the most potent player on the pitch and his eight points, three from play, were crucial. Longford led by 0-8 to 0-4 at the interval and put the result beyond doubt in a blistering opening to the second period when Francis McGee buttressed points from McCormack and Paul Barden with their first goal. Another three-pointer, from JJ Matthews after 47 minutes, re-emphasised the gulf and Limerick’s disastrous trip deteriorated further with the dismissals of Michael Reidy and John Riordan.

Ryan admitted to being surprised by the visitors’ torpor. “They are a seasoned team and we were four points up against them here last year and they got an equaliser with the last kick in normal time and beat us well in extra-time, so they have been through the mill. “You don’t often get second chances but we had a second chance and at least we are in the next round now.”

Scorers for Longford: S McCormack (0-8, five frees); JJ Matthews (1-2); F McGee (1-0); N Mulligan (0-2); J Keegan; P Barden (0-1 each).

Scorers for Limerick: S Buckley; E O’Connor (two frees) (0-3 each): I Corbett; G Collins; D O’Connor (0-1 each).

LONGFORD: D Sheridan; D Brady, B Gilleran, D Reilly; B O’Farrell, P McCormack, S Mulligan; J Keegan, M Brady; B McElvaney, P Barden, P Foy; JJ Matthews, S McCormack, F McGee.

Subs for Longford: N Mulligan for Foy (49); CP Smyth for Barden (62); K Diffley for Keegan (65); a Rowan for McElvaney; S Doyle for McGee (both 66).

LIMERICK: B Scanlan; M O’Riordan, J McCarthy, A Lane; J Riordan, P Browne, P Ranahan; B O’Brien, J Galvin; S Lavin, T Lee, I Corbett; E O’Connor, S Buckley, G Collins.

Subs for Limerick: D O’Connor for Lee (h-t); S Lucey for O’Brien (43); M Ready for Corbett (46); S O’Carroll for Collins (49); C Coady for Lane (66).

Referee: D Gough (Meath)


Longford 2-14 Limerick 0-09

Report from the web site

Longford proved too powerful for Limerick as Glen Ryan’s side helped themselves to a 2-14 to 0-09 win in All-Ireland Football qualifiers at Pearse Park. Two goals early in the second-half from Francis McGee and JJ Mathews buried Limerick as Longford picked up their first win of the season with a slick performance. Limerick had Michael Reidy and John Riordan sent off in the closing stages, but at that stage it mattered little as Sean McCormack lodged a stellar showing for the midlanders.

Manager Glen Ryan will be thrilled to see his side get their campaign finally up and running, and with such a dangerous forward line to call on, they will pose a serious test to anyone in the next round. His starting full-forward line hit a combined 2-10, while substitute Niall Mulligan hit two late scores to add further weight to their reputation as a dangerous attack. At half-time Longford deservedly held a 0-08 to 0-04 advantage, but they came out after the restart and blitzed Maurice Horan’s side with 1-02 in the first three minutes.

McCormack pointed and Paul Barden also dissected the posts for the hosts, before McGee slotted past Brian Scanlan for a terrific goal in the 37th minute. At that stage the Limerick challenge was wilting and it died totally when Matthews made the most of a defensive slip and rattled the net in the 47th minute. Limerick had done well to stay as close to Longford as they did in the opening half as Eoghan O’Connor his two points from play to keep their challenge alive against dominant opponents.

But at the other end there was no answer to McCormack’s class and he hit five points before the break, many of which were carved out by marauding wing-back Shane Mulligan. The goals put the result beyond doubt, but when Reidy was shown a straight red card in the 60th minute their challenge died. Riordan joined him on the line as the full time whistle approached, but it mattered little as Longford dominated throughout. And after searching for that first win of the campaign for so long who knows what Longford can produce for the remainder of the summer.

Longford: D Sheridan; D Brady, B Gilleran, D Reilly; B O’Farrell, P McCormack, S Mulligan; J Keegan, M Brady; B McElvaney, P Barden (0-01), P Foy; F McGee (1-00), S McCormack (0-08, 0-05f), JJ Matthews (1-02).

Subs: N Mulligan (0-02) for Foy (49 mins), C Smyth for Barden (64 mins), K Diffney for Keegan (65 mins), A Rowan for McGee (66 mins), S Doyle for McElaveney (66 mins).

Limerick: B Scanlan; M O’Riordan, J McCarthy, A Lane; J Riordan, P Browne, P Ranahan; B O’Brien, J Galvin; S Lavin, T Lee, I Corbett (0-01); E O’Connor (0-03, 0-01f), S Buckley (0-03, 0-01f), G Collins (0-01).

Subs: D O’Connor (0-01, 0-01f) for Lee (h-t), S Lucey for O’Brien (42 mins), M Reidy for Corbett (46 mins), S O’Carroll for Collins (48 mins).

Referee: D Gough (Meath)


Longford 2-14 Limerick 0-8

Report from

Longford ended a miserable run of eight successive competitive defeats this year when they beat Limerick quite comfortably at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park on Saturday evening. It was a measure of revenge for Glenn Ryan’s side, who lost to Limerick after extra-time in Round 2 of the competition last year.

Limerick were well in the game at the break when they trailed by just 0-8 to 0-4, but Longford won the game inside three minutes of the restart. Seán McCormack and Paul Barden scored excellent points and then Francis McGee netted the first goal of the game to put the hosts 1-10 to 0-4 ahead.

Seánie Buckley battled well for Limerick after moving out to midfield and scored two good points, but Maurice Horan’s side were undone when Longford hit a second goal after 47 minutes. A poor back pass to goalkeeper Brian Scanlon was intercepted by JJ Matthews, who buried the ball with little fuss.

Things got worse for Limerick when sub Michael Reidy was sent off on a straight red card after an altercation with Declan Reilly. The visitors were then reduced to 13 men when John Riordan also got his marching orders for a second yellow card. Longford go into the draw for Round 2 of the Qualifiers on Monday morning.

Fixture Details

29.06.2013 (Sat)

GAA Football All Ireland Senior Championship Round 1

Glennon Brothers Pearse Park 19:00

An Longfort v Luimneach

Referee: David Gough (An Mhí)

(E.T. if Necessary)

They meet for the second successive year, having clashed in the qualifiers last season when Limerick won by 1-21 to 1-15 in extra time in Longford. Longford beat Derry by 0-17 to 2-8 in the first round. Limerick lost to Kildare by a point in extra-time in Round 3.

2013 Championship to date

Wicklow 1-15 Longford 0-16

Cork 3-17 Limerick 0-8

Match Preview

Limerick and Longford meet for the second year in a row in the Qualifiers, although last year’s encounter at Glennon Brothers Pearse Park came in Round 2. Prior to that game, which Limerick won by 1-21 to 1-15 after extra-time, the sides had no history at all in the championship.

Both sides come into the game on the back of disappointing provincial championship defeats so for one team at least, the season will end on a particularly disappointing note. In a cracking contest last year, Seán McCormack looked to have sent Glenn Ryan’s side into Round 3 with an injury time point, but youngster Derry O’Connor popped up with a crucial equaliser for the Treaty Men at the death.

Limerick moved three points clear at half-time in extra-time before McCormack landed his eighth score of the afternoon to cut the gap to two. It all started to unravel for the hosts when Declan Reilly and David Barden were sent off. Limerick made the most of the extra room to power ahead, O’Connor hammering the final nail in their coffin with a late goal.

Longford boss Ryan was left contemplating his future after the game and must have regretted the chances his side missed in normal time. With seven minutes to go, his charges were three points clear and had an opportunity to kill off the game, but Limerick goalkeeper Brian Scanlon made a brilliant save from Francis McGee.

Limerick manager Maurice Horan has made one change from the side that lost heavily to Cork, with Scanlon taking over the No. 1 jersey from Donal O’Sullivan. Ian Ryan remains out through injury.

Longford’s 1-15 to 0-16 defeat to Wicklow in Leinster means they have now lost eight successive games this year. Both sides have very similar records in the Qualifiers so it’s one of the hardest games of the entire weekend to call.

Team News

Limerick: Brian Scanlon, Andy Lane, Johnny McCarthy, Mark O’Riordan, Stephen Lavin, Paudie Browne , Pa Ranahan , Bobby O’Brien, John Galvin, John O’Riordan, Thomas Lee, Ian Corbett, Ger Collins, Seanie Buckley (capt), Eoghan O’Connor

All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Qualifiers Round 1 – Galway 1-12 Tipperary 0-11

Galway defeated Tipperary by 1-12 to 0-11 in the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Qualifiers Round 1 on Saturday in Pearse Stadium Galway.

Relief for the Tribe as Tipp test passed

Galway 1-12 Tipperary 0-11

By John Fallon for the Irish Examiner newspaper

There was no great air of celebration in Salthill on Saturday, and no reason for it either. Galway finally ended their losing run in the qualifiers but relief rather than rejoicing was the reaction. They knew they had come close to extending a dreadful run in the qualifiers which stretched back to 2004.  In the end, though, they deserved their victory on a night when two sides tried to put 17-point humiliations behind them in their respective provincial quarter-final losses to Mayo and Kerry.

Those beatings had taken a toll, perhaps more so in Galway where they suffered the drubbing in their own backyard at the expense of their biggest rivals. And manager Alan Mulholland admitted it had been a battle to get the troops back into formation.

“The last six weeks were hard for everybody… for the management, for the players, for all the support staff as well. Coming off that record defeat to Mayo wasn’t easy.  “But I would like to pay tribute to the players, in particular, and all the management team, nothing could be asked of them for the last six weeks. We trained harder in the last six weeks than we have trained all year and everybody did what they were asked to do. “We hadn’t won a qualifier since 2004 and that kept coming back at us but at least we put that right. It is one small step but at least we are in the bowl on Monday.”

Tipperary adopted excellent tactics in the first half against the wind, getting players behind the ball and then working it forward patiently.  They should have been ahead at the break but seven wides, five of them from placed balls, emphasised the loss of the injured Barry Grogan and undermined their challenge.

Galway had nine wides in that opening period, often being forced to shoot from poor positions in a crowded defence but after the sides exchanged points five times, man of the match Sean Armstrong edged the Tribesmen 0-6 to 0-5 in front at the break.  “We put a lot of energy into the first half playing into the breeze, and in the second half our plan was to push on but in fairness to Galway, they hit hard in the third quarter,” said Tipperary manager Peter Creedon.

Mark Hehir put two points between the sides for the first time shortly after the restart and Armstrong also found the range.  Peter Acheson and Danny Cummins then swapped points before the key score of the game. Cummins, full of running, floated in a high effort from the right. The wind stopped it going over the bar but it broke kindly for Michael Farragher and the debutant from Corofin slotted low into the bottom right corner and suddenly Galway were ahead by double scores, 1-9 to 0-6.  “A goal was always going to be a major score in and we were lucky enough to get it,” said Mulholland.

Galway extended the lead to eight points before Tipp, to their credit, rallied and came with a good surge in the final quarter but the goal just would not come, although Creedon could not fault the effort from his injury-ravaged side.  “Our lads showed fantastic character and spirit, as they have all year, after the goal. But there is one thing about this Tipp team — they keep going to the end and with a bit of luck could have got over the line.

“There was only one team playing in the last quarter of an hour and that was us but the goal didn’t come and Galway hung on and I wish them the best of luck. We were well in the game at half-time, could have been ahead at that stage and we are disappointed in the second half that we didn’t push on but give credit to Galway, they got some good scores but a lucky goal as well but sometimes you need luck in the qualifiers,” said Creedon.

Scorers for Galway: S Armstrong 0-4 (1f), M Farragher 1-1, D Cummins 0-3, M Meehan 0-2 (1f), M Hehir 0-1, P Conroy 0-1.

Scorers for Tipperary: C Sweeney 0-6 (3f), B O’Brien 0-2, B Fox 0-1, H Coghlan 0-1, S O’Brien 0-1.

GALWAY: M Breathnach; C Forde, F Hanley, K Kelly; C Doherty, G O’Donnell, G Sice; P Conroy, G Higgins; J O’Brien; S Armstrong, M Farragher; M Hehir, M Meehan, D Cummins.

Subs for Galway: T Flynn for Higgins (50), S Walsh for J O’Brien (54), M Martin for Meehan (60), F O Curraoin for Farragher (61), D O’Neill for Sice (64).

TIPPERARY: P Fitzgerald; A Morrissey, P Codd, J Coghlan; B Fox, D Lynch, D Leahy; H Coghlan, S O’Brien; L Egan, P Acheson, I Fahey; C Sweeney, P Quirke, G Hannigan.

Subs for Tipperary: B Mulvihill for Lynch (49), B O’Brien for Fahey (56), A Matassa for S O’Brien (60).

Referee: P O’Sullivan (Kerry)

Galway 1-12 Tipperary 0-11

Report from the web site

A goal from debutant Michael Farragher helped Galway get out of jail at Pearse Stadium as they end a losing run in the qualifiers which stretches back to 2004 with a 1-12 to 0-11 victory over Tipperary. Galway were in trouble when they led by just 0-06 to 0-05 at the break having played with the strong wind but they produced a big third quarter to see off the Premiermen. Two points directly after the restart from Mark Hehir and Sean Armstrong pushed them three points in front.

Peter Acheson and Danny Cummins exchanged points but then a floated ball from Cummins was punched out to Farragher and he slotted the ball into the bottom right corner and suddenly Galway were ahead by double scores. It was all so different in the opening half when the sides exchanged points five times. Galway, who hit nine wides, struggled to break down the Tipp defence as the visitors crowded their rearguard and then worked the ball up the field.

Tipp, indeed, should have been ahead at the break but seven wides undermined their challenge. Conor Sweeney hit four of them from placed balls but landed three excellent efforts from play. Armstrong and Michael Meehan did most to lift a sluggish Galway side and Armstrong’s third point just before the interval edged them 0-6 to 0-5 in front at the break.

But it did not look like it would be enough given the strong wind, but Galway lifted their game after the restart and Farragher’s goal put them in the driving seat. Tipperary, despite being ravaged by injuries, never gave up and three points from frees by Sweeney and a couple from play by sub Bernard O’Brien ensured anxious moments for the Galway supporters in the crowd of 3,608.

But Tipperary never looked like getting the goal they required to lift their comeback, although Sweeney went close in the dying moments but Galway goalkeeper Manus Breathnach brought off another good save as the Tribesmen ended their seven-match losing run in the qualifiers and booked their place in the next round.

Galway: M Breathnach; C Forde, F Hanley, K Kelly; C Doherty, G O’Donnell, G Sice: P Conroy (0-01), G Higgins; J O’Brien, S Armstrong (0-04), M Farragher (1-01); M Hehir (0-01), M Meehan (0-02, 0-01f), D Cummins (0-03).

Subs used: D O’Neill for Sice (64), T Flynn for O’Brien (68), F O Curraoin for Farragher (61), M Martin for Meehan (60).

Tipperary: P Fitzgerald; A Morrissey, P Codd, J Coghlan; B Fox (0-01), D Lynch, D Leahy; H Coghlan (0-01), S O’Brien; L Allen, P Acheson (0-01), I Fahey; C Sweeney (0-05), P Quirke, G Hannigan.

Subs used: B O’Brien (0-02) for Fahey 56, A Matassa (0-01) for S O’Brien 60, B Mulvihill for Lynch 49.

Galway 1-12 Tipperary 0-11

Report from

Michael Farragher’s goal was crucial for Galway as they defeated Tipperary at Pearse Stadium on Saturday night to record a rare win in the Qualifiers and move into Round 2.

Farragher’s goal after 48 minutes put Alan Mulholland’s side 1-9 to 0-6 in front, and that buffer was enough to withstand a spirited Tipperary fightback in the final 10 minutes.

Galway played with the wind in the opening half, but they trailed 0-4 to 0-3 after a low-scoring opening 25 minutes, with points from Conor Sweeney and Hugh Coghlan edging Tipperary just ahead with half-time approaching.

Galway finished the first half strongly though, and aided by points from Paul Conroy, Michael Meehan and Seán Armstrong, led 0-6 to 0-5 at the interval.

The Connacht side looked a much fiercer prospect after the restart, and they went 0-9 to 0-6 in front just before Farragher’s goal, which he took well after receiving a pass from Danny Cummins.

Galway led by nine points at 1-12 to 0-6 with an hour played, but Tipperary battled hard and kicked the final five points of the game, with three from Sweeney and two from Stephen O’Brien, to finish up just four shy of the Tribesmen, who will be in the pot for the Round 2 Qualifier draw on Monday morning.

Fixture Details

29.06.2013 (Sat)

GAA Football All Ireland Senior Championship Round 1

Pearse Stadium 19:00

Gaillimh v Tiobraid Árann

Referee: Padraig O’Sullivan (Ciarraí)

(E.T. if Necessary)

It’s the first championship clash between the counties since 1902 when Tipperary beat Galway in the All-Ireland semi-final. Galway were beaten by Antrim (0-11 to 0-10) in the Round 2 qualifiers last year while Tipperary beat Offaly (1-12 to 1-10), Wexford (1-13 to 0-15) and Antrim (0-10 to 0-8) before losing to Down by 1-13 to 0-11 in Round 4.

2013 Championship Results to date

Mayo 4-16 Galway 0-11

Kerry 2-19 Tipperary 0-8

Team News

The Tipperary senior football team to play Galway is as follows – 

1. Paul Fitzgerald (Fethard)
2. Andrew Morrissey (Galtee Rovers) 
3. Paddy Codd (Killenaule) Captain
4. Donal Lynch (Clonmel Commercials)
5. Brian Fox (Eire Og Annacarty Donohill)
6. John Coghlan (Moyne Templetuohy)
7. Donagh Leahy (Arravale Rovers)
8. Lorcan Egan (JK Brackens)
9. Steven O’Brien (Ballina)
10. Philip Austin (Borrisokane)
11. Peter Acheson (Moyle Rovers) 
12. Ian Fahey (Clonmel Commercials)
13. Conor Sweeney (Ballyporeen)
14. Philip Quirke (Moyle Rovers) 
15. George Hannigan (Shannon Rovers)

The Galway team to play Tipperary is as follows –

1. Manus Breathnach

2. Colin Forde

3. Finian Hanley

4. Keith Kelly

5. Conor Doherty

6. Gary O’Donnell

7. Gary Sice

8. Paul Conroy

9. Greg Higgins

10. John O’Brien

11. Sean Armstrong

12. Michael Farragher

13. Mark Hehir

14. Michael Meehan

15. Danny Cummins

Two new names have been added to the subs for Saturday. David O’Connor from St James and Declan Kyne from Clonbur. Thomas Flynn, Fiontain O Curroin and Johnny Duane have also been named in the subs for Saturday evening

Match Preview

Galway and Tipperary have met once before in the Qualifiers, but it was way back in 1902, when the Premier County won out in an All-Ireland semi-final.

Remarkably, Galway have not won a Qualifier since they beat Louth in 2004 and they have lost at the first attempt in each of the last four years, against Donegal, Wexford, Meath and Antrim respectively.

Tipperary, meanwhile, doubled the number of wins they have managed in the Qualifiers last year by beating Offaly, Wexford and Antrim before losing to Down in Round 4.

Neither side has been in action in over a month, though Galway manager Alan Mulholland says the break has given his side a chance to pick up the pieces after the shattering 4-16 to 0-11 defeat to Mayo.

“Of course you look at what went wrong, but there’s no point going into every detail. We know we’re better than that,” Mulholland said.

Michael Meehan, who has not taken part in training in recent weeks because of a muscle injury, is a major doubt for Galway. Gareth Bradshaw and Niall Coleman are unavailable, while Gary Sweeney and Joss Moore are also ruled out.

Tipperary suffered a 2-18 to 0-8 defeat to Kerry in the Munster quarter-final, but Peter Creedon’s inexperienced squad will fancy their chances against an under strength Galway side.


All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Qualifier First Round – Waterford 3-22 Westmeath 0-14

Waterford defeated Westmeath by 3-22 to 0-14 in the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Qualifier First Round on Saturday in Cusack Park Mullingar.

Ryan relief as class tells in end

Westmeath 0-14 Waterford 3-22

By Daragh Ó Conchúir for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Waterford were in cruise control in the second half of Saturday’s Cusack Park tie, but they were severely tested in the opening period by a committed, skilled and fired-up Westmeath unit relishing a shot at the big time. The game got off to a frantic start, with four yellow cards dished out inside three minutes by Diarmuid Kirwan, the first two to 17-year-old Liam Varley and Maurice Shanahan after an off-the-ball scuffle that led to a brief melee. Once the game settled down though, it was Westmeath that were the better side until half time, a fact acknowledged by Waterford manager, Michael Ryan. “We were disappointed with our first-half performance but, first of all, let’s give credit for Westmeath,” said Ryan afterwards. “They played very well. They were very committed. They seemed to be reacting to the breaks better than we were. We had a good chat at half time, we ironed out a few things and were happy with our second-half performance. “I felt in the first half our hurling was slow, we moved the ball a bit too slowly. We played in Division 1 so we should be capable of moving the ball a lot quicker. We did that in the second half and opened out the game as well. “We created the chances and above all, we finished the chances. Any time you win a championship game — we’ve now won two championship games in a row — that’s got to be good for us.”

Points from Derek McNicholas, Aonghus Clarke and Brendan Murtagh helped Westmeath establish an early 0-5 to 0-2 lead. Waterford were completely reliant on Shanahan at this juncture, with both their scores coming from the Lismore man. He added the next two points as well, including Waterford’s first from play, and Kevin Moran equalised with a fine effort from distance. But Westmeath’s touch was sure and the likes of McNicholas and Murtagh were looking very sharp. They stretched three points clear once more thanks to scores from the duo — including a 70m strike by Murtagh — and Eoin Price.

Crucially though, Brian O’Sullivan pounced for a 32nd-minute goal after some typical industry from Seamus Prendergast and the sides were level (0-10 to 1-7) at the break. They were three points clear when O’Sullivan availed of Seamus Prendergast’s industry to find the Westmeath net. “It almost came against the run of play but Brian O’Sullivan is that kind of a guy,” stated Ryan. “He’s well capable of taking chances. He gets into very good positions. I always feel if you can put him in possession close to goal, he’s capable of getting goals.”

Having settled down during the interval, Waterford seemed much more at ease after the resumption and had points from Prendergast, O’Sullivan and Shanahan before Tommy Doyle hit back for Westmeath. Shanahan was on fire though, and with more space available, landed some wonderful scores from play. Prendergast and O’Sullivan also prospered, with the latter bagging his second goal at the three-quarter mark. Shanahan brought his tally to 1-9 when goaling with a first-time ground shot in the game’s last act.

If Ryan was satisfied, so too was Hanley. The Westmeath manager was accurate in saying that the final margin was a bit harsh on his players, but hailed their efforts. “We said at half time that we didn’t want the moral victory” Hanley declared. “The moral victory was being in the game at half time but call a spade a spade, that’s not worth a damn to you. You’re not coming up here to do that. “Waterford should be doing what they did to us in the second half. That’s the level they’re at and we’re two divisions behind and it showed. Their physicality was major. So was their first touch, their drive and their accuracy. “But Mike Ryan came in and was very complimentary of us. We finished with 11 U21s and it’s about what we do from here.”

Scorers for Waterford: M Shanahan 1-9 (4f); B O’Sullivan 2-2; S Prendergast 0-3; K Moran, J Dillon 0-2 each; S Fives, D Fives, S O’Sullivan, J Barron 0-1 each

Scorers for Westmeath: D McNicholas 0-6 (4f); B Murtagh 0-3; E Price 0-2; A Clarke, J Shaw, T Doyle 0-1 each

WATERFORD: S O’Keeffe; S Fives, L Lawlor, N Connor, D Fives, M Walsh, R Barry; R Foley, K Moran, J Dillon, P Mahony, S O’Sullivan, M Shanahan, S Prendergast, B O’Sullivan.

Subs for Waterford: G O’Brien for Mahony (53); E Barrett for D Fives (55); D Twomey for Foley (57); T Browne for Barry (61); J Barron for Dillon (64).

WESTMEATH: P Collins; P Fennell, T Gallagher, L Varley, D Fennell, A McGrath, A Price, E Price, R Greville, B Murtagh, J Boyle, J Shaw, N O’Brien, D McNicholas, A Clarke.

Subs for Westmeath: T Doyle for Shaw (38); G Greville for Gallagher (49); A Craig for O’Brien (65); S Power for R Greville (65); T Egan for Varley (66).

Referee: D Kirwan (Cork).


Westmeath 0-14 Waterford 3-22

Report from the

Waterford cruised into the next phase of the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship qualifiers by beating hosts Westmeath by 3-22 to 0-14 in Mullingar this evening. But the Déise did not have it all their own way. The winning margin was a harsh judgement on the Lakesiders who held the odds-on favourites at 0-10 to 1-07 at half-time, with Brendan Murtagh and Derek McNicholas impressing.

But goals from Brian O’Sullivan and the superb Maurice Shanahan (1-09) saw the Munster outfit through, as they outclassed Brian Hanley’s gallant charges after the restart. Shanahan’s scoring haul and a brace of goals from Brian O’Sullivan were the key ingredients in this Cusack Park win, the visitors recovering their poise after McNicholas, John Shaw, Eoin Price and Brendan Murtagh all contributed to Westmeath’s brave bid in the first half.

Pound for pound, the hosts looked like the better team at the interval with wasteful Waterford heavily reliant on Shanahan, and parity secured only by virtue of O’Sullivan’s first goal. But Michael Ryan’s troops enjoyed the benefit of a strong breeze after the restart and set about dismantling Westmeath’s resistance, outscoring the home side by 1-11 to 0-01 in the space of 22 minutes. Shanahan, O’Sullivan, Jake Dillon and Seamus Prendergast dominated the scoring, before substitute Gavin O’Brien set up O’Sullivan for his second goal on 57 minutes, making it 2-18 to 0-11.

Brendan Murtagh responded with a fine point for the midlanders, but a cameo from veteran Tony Browne lifted the travelling Waterford support as the Déise applied the finishing touches. Browne, who turns 40 in a few days, did not score, but his county closed out the game with points from O’Sullivan, Kevin Moran, Shane Fives and substitute Jamie Barron. Shanahan then put the cherry on top of a satisfying day at the office, finding the net with a stoppage time rebound after Westmeath’s Peter Collins did well to save a fierce shot from Brian O’Sullivan.

WESTMEATH: Peter Collins; Liam Varley, Tommy Gallagher, Paul Fennell; David Fennell, Alan McGrath, Adam Price; Eoin Price (0-02), Robbie Greville; Brendan Murtagh (0-03), John Shaw (0-01), Derek McNicholas (0-06, 0-05f); Niall O’Brien, Joey Boyle, Aonghus Clarke (0-01).

Subs used: Tommy Doyle (0-01) for Shaw (38 mins, inj), Gary Greville for Gallagher (49), Aaron Craig for O’Brien (65), Shane Power for R Greville (65), Thomas Egan for Varley (66).

WATERFORD: Stephen O’Keeffe; Shane Fives (0-01), Liam Lawlor, Noel Connors; Darragh Fives (0-01), Michael ‘Brick’ Walsh, Ray Barry; Richie Foley, Kevin Moran (0-02); Maurice Shanahan (1-09, 0-05f), Pauric Mahony, Shane O’Sullivan (0-01); Jake Dillon (0-02), Seamus Prendergast (0-03), Brian O’Sullivan (2-02).

Subs used: Gavin O’Brien for Mahony (53 mins), Eddie Barrett for D Fives (55), Dean Twomey for Foley (57), Tony Browne for Barry (60), Jamie Barron (0-01) for Dillon (63).

Referee: Diarmuid Kirwan (Cork)

Team News

The Waterford Senior Hurling Team to play Westmeath on Saturday evening has been announced –

1. Stephen O’Keeffe Ballygunner

2. Shane Fives Carrigtwohill

3. Liam Lawlor Fourmilewater

4. Noel Connors Passage

5. Darragh Fives Tourin

6. Michael Walsh Stradbally

7. Paudie Prendergast Lismore

8. Richie Foley Abbeyside

9. Kevin Moran (CAPT.) De La Salle

10. Maurice Shanahan Lismore

11. Pauric Mahony Ballygunner

12. Shane O’Sullivan Ballygunner

13 Jake Dillon De La Salle

14. Seamus Prendergast Ardmore

15. Brian O’Sullivan Ballygunner

WESTMEATH (SH v Waterford): P Collins (St Oliver Plunkett’s); L Varley (Castletown Geoghegan), T Gallagher (Castlepollard), P Fennell (Castletown Geoghegan); D Fennell (Castletown Geoghegan), A McGrath (Clonkill), A Price (Clonkill); E Price (Clonkill), J Clarke (Castletown Geoghegan); B Murtagh (Clonkill), A Craig (St Oliver Plunkett’s), D McNicholas (Lough Lene Gaels); N O’Brien (Castletown Geoghegan), R Greville (Raharney), J Shaw (Raharney).

Subs: S McGovern (Crookedwood), S Power (Clonkill), M Keegan (Clonkill), T Doyle (Lough Lene Gaels), B O’Mara (Crookedwood), G Greville (Raharney), T Egan (Clonkill), N Leonard (Brownstown), J Boyle (Raharney), A Clarke (Castletown Geoghegan), C Lynch (St Oliver Plunkett’s).

Match Preview

The second game of a an exciting double header at Cusack Park, Mullingar on Saturday sees Westmeath and Waterford go head-to-head with a place in Phase III of the Qualifiers at stake. Westmeath have a history of putting it up to the big hitters at Cusack Park – just ask Galway – but Waterford will make the trip full of confidence after last Saturday’s solid performance in Tullamore, where Maurice Shanahan scored 0-13 in a four-point win over Offaly.

The Lake County were in Ruislip, where they struggled at times in the first half but eventually wore the Exiles down and eased to a 1-15 to 0-11 win. That was Westmeath’s first win from eight attempts in the Qualifiers, while the Déise have a much more impressive record of played eight, won six and lost two. Waterford manager Michael Ryan has drafted in Richie Foley and Pauric Mahony, with Jamie Nagle and Jamie Barron make way. Westmeath boss Brian Hanley has opted for an unchanged side. The sides last met in the championship back in 2006, when Waterford won a qualifier tie in Mullingar by 3-22 to 1-14.

Liberty Insurance Senior Camogie Championship – Kilkenny 1-10 Clare 0-11

Kilkenny defeated Clare by 1-10 to 0-11 in the Liberty Insurance Senior Camogie Championship on Saturday at Nowlan Park Kilkenny.

Kilkenny maintain winning start

By Daragh Ó Conchúir for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Kilkenny kept up their fine form in the Liberty Insurance senior camogie championship when overcoming the challenge of Clare at Nowlan Park on Saturday. The Noresiders, brimming with confidence after their opening round win away to Galway, finished strongly to grab the spoils on a scoreline of 1-10 to 0-11. Denise Gaule pounced for a 14th minute goal to hand the home side an early lead, but John Carmody’s outfit responded with four consecutive points from Claire McMahon (two frees), Chloe Morey (free) and Naomi Carroll to leave them trailing by the minimum at half time, 1-4 to 0-6.

Morey levelled matters early in the second-half before the visitors hit the front thanks to scores from the excellent Deirdre Murphy and McMahon. A flurry of late points however, from Power, Michelle Quilty (free) and Ann Dalton snatched the honours for Kilkenny.