Limerick too good for Galway in Under-21 semi-final

Tribesmen’s mini-revival not enough as Treaty progress to meet Wexford in the final

Galway 0-17 Limerick 1-20

John Kiely’s Limerick are through to a first Bord Gáis Energy All-Ireland Under-21 hurling final since 2002.

The Shannonsiders saw off a fancied Galway outfit by six points in front of 7,563 spectators in Thurles on Saturday evening.

Jason Flynn scored 0-7 for Galway but his fellow senior stars Cathal Mannion and Jason Whelan were subdued.


Whelan managed a point from play but Whelan was scoreless as Brian Molloy provided some resistance to Limerick with five points from play.

Limerick's senior panellist Tom Morrissey came to the fore with a haul of 1-3 from play, including a crucial 49th minute goal when he somehow found the net under intense pressure, with referee Fergal Horgan playing an excellent advantage.

David Dempsey was another to excel with four points as the Munster champions Limerick set up a September 12th clash with Wexford.

Kiely was a Limerick senior panellist in 1996 when Wexford claimed victory in the All-Ireland decider but almost 20 years on, he has the chance to exact some revenge.

On a roll

When Limerick got on a roll in the second half, they proved difficult to stop but the Treaty men were battle-hardened compared to a Galway team playing their first game in the competition this season.

All-Ireland intermediate success has been annexed by Galway already this season while their minors and seniors are looking ahead to All-Ireland final day on September 6th.

But the dream of a ‘clean sweep’ died in Thurles as Limerick proved too good.

The sides were level at half-time, 0-10 apiece, with Galway coming from six points down to ensure parity at the break.

Morrissey hit a brace for Limerick as they surged into a 0-10 to 0-4 advantage but inspired by Flynn, Galway hit back with six unanswered points to draw level.

They edged ahead early in the second half when Daniel Nevin pointed but Limerick equalised through a Ronan Lynch free and when they hit the front through Dempsey, they would not be caught.

It was Nevin who had kickstarted proceedings with the opening score of the game after just ten seconds but Limerick had the better of the exchanges thereafter, before Galway rallied towards the end of the first half.

The best goal chance of the first half fell to Flynn but he was kept out by David McCarthy in the seventh minute.

A goal would prove elusive for Galway but Limerick got one when it mattered and Morrissey’s gritty effort proved decisive.

LIMERICK: D McCarthy; S Finn, R English, M Casey; D Byrnes (0-2), B O'Connell, G Hegarty (0-1); D O'Donovan (0-2), P Ryan; R Lynch (0-3, 2f, 1 sl), C Lynch (0-1), D Dempsey (0-4); C Ryan (0-3), T Morrissey (1-3), B Nash (0-1).

Subs: A La Touche-Cosgrave for P Ryan (51), P Casey for Nash (51), M O’Callaghan for M Casey (59), J Kelliher for Morrissey (60+1).

GALWAY: G Loughnane; D Cronin, P Killeen, B Keane; S Sweeney, S Cooney (0-1), É Burke; K McHugo, D Nevin (0-2); E Brannigan (0-1), C Mannion, C Whelan (0-1); B Molloy (0-5), R O'Meara, J Flynn (0-7, 2f, 2 65s, 1 sl).

Subs: M Mullins for O’Meara (21), J Kennedy for Brannigan (41), J Ryan for McHugo (52), B Burke for Kennedy (56)

Referee: F Horgan (Tipperary)