Inspired Dublin stun Galway to book spot in Leinster final

Mattie Kenny’s side reach decider for the first time since 2014 and leave Tribesmen reeling

Dublin’s Jake Malone celebrates at the final whistle after his side beat Galway in the Leinster SHC semi-finals. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Dublin’s Jake Malone celebrates at the final whistle after his side beat Galway in the Leinster SHC semi-finals. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

 

Galway 1-14 Dublin 1-18

Maybe it was the return of fans and street venders, maybe it was the brooding low mist that hung over Croke Park after the recent sunny stretch or maybe it was just hurling being hurling.

Whatever the reason, this was a strange game, a low scoring encounter that began with Joe Canning missing a hatful of scores and continued in that unfamiliar vein, climaxing in a rare win over top ranked opposition for Dublin.

It had been over two years since Dublin had taken down a genuine All-Ireland contender, in either league or Championship, beating, ironically, Galway at nearby Parnell Park in June of 2019.

They came from behind with a late siege on that occasion but led from pillar to post in this one, securing their July 17th provincial final place with surprising ease and leaving Galway’s All-Ireland ambitions in tatters.

Conor Whelan scores a goal. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho
Conor Whelan scores a goal. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Chris Crummey’s 53rd minute goal was crucial though it was a win for the collective with Dublin leaders all over the field.

Goalkeeper Alan Nolan pulled off a string of saves, Conor Burke was Mmn of the match at midfield and captain Danny Sutcliffe starred in attack, sniping 0-3.

Speaking afterwards, manager Mattie Kenny hailed the courage of defender James Madden too, the Ballyboden man playing virtually all of the game despite burying his father, Noel, yesterday.

Galway never got going and talisman Joe Canning was surprisingly off-colour, striking six of the team’s 14 wides.

Conor Whelan did cut the gap to two with a 43rd minute goal - but Crummey and co shut the door with Dublin’s major 10 minutes later.

Galway went for goals early on but Canning was twice denied, firstly from a free and then from open play, and Nolan thwarted Conor Cooney too.

Dublin put 3-31 on the board against Antrim last weekend and simply picked up where they’d left off, passing it up through the lines, playing with ultra-efficiency and surging 0-6 to 0-1 ahead.

Canning eventually found his range as Galway reeled off four points in-a-row between the 23rd and 31st minutes but Dublin still led 0-8 to 0-6 at half-time.

Darren Morrissey with Donal Burke clash. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho
Darren Morrissey with Donal Burke clash. Photo: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

The second-half panned out upon similar lines, Dublin starting brightly, Galway recovering and the Sky Blues ultimately finishing on top to book their return to Croke Park in a fortnight.

Dublin were five clear when Whelan did brilliantly to burst beyond Paddy Smyth for Galway’s goal.

That reduced the gap to two but they couldn’t get any closer as Dublin picked off enough points to stay in control despite inspirational full-back Eoghan O’Donnell limping off with a hamstring injury.

Dublin: A Nolan (0-1, 1f); C O’Callaghan, E O’Donnell, P Smyth; J Madden, L Rushe, D Gray (0-2); R McBride (0-1), C Burke (0-1); D Burke (0-6, 4f), C Crummey (1-0), D Sutcliffe (0-3); C Boland (0-1), R Hayes (0-2), C O’Sullivan (0-1).

Subs: M Schutte for Boland 30-f/t (blood), O O’Rorke for O’Sullivan 52, A Dunphy for O’Donnell 58, J Malone for Madden 68, P Crummey for C Crummey 72, F Whitely for Hayes 75.

Galway: E Murphy; S Cooney, G McInerney, D Morrissey; P Mannion (0-1), Daithi Burke, F Burke; S Loftus, C Mannion (0-1); C Cooney (0-1), J Canning (0-6, 4f, 1 65), A Tuohey; C Whelan (1-2), J Cooney, B Concannon.

Subs: David Burke for Tuohey 34, E Niland (0-2, 1f) for Loftus h/t, A Hare (0-1) for S Cooney 56-60 (blood), TJ Brennan for F Burke 58, Harte for J Cooney 61, N Burke for C Cooney 67.

Referee: J Murphy (Limerick).

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