AFTER a nail-biting second half Kilkenny and Galway drew and will meet for the third time in this All Ireland Championship after a tense All-Ireland final.
In the final minutes Kilkenny led but the tribesmen fought back scoring an equalising point in extra time.
Henry Shefflin opened the scoring with a point in the fourth minute and Kilkenny looked unbeatable for the first few minutes until Galway forward Joe Canning put the ball in the back of the net. Galway were on top for the rest of the first half with the half time score Galway 1-9 to Kilkenny’s seven points.
However Kilkenny renowned for their comebacks returned to the pitch for the second half with fire bellowing from their bellies and Shefflin scored a point from a free within the first minute. There was little between the two sides with only a narrow margin separating themand both teams were level on the 50th minute. With four minutes to go both teams were level again and Kilkenny led in the final minutes. Galway equalised in injury time seconds before the final whistle blew leaving both sides hungry for another day out in Croke Park.
In the Marble City there was an electric atmosphere in the hours building up to the final. Fans were confident that the Cats would return with the Liam McCarthy Cup for the sixth time in the past seven years. After the match there was a stunned silence on the streets. “I am really disappointed. They were winning and then bang one point and the whistle ended it,” said Katie Dillon from Dunamaggin. Michelle Hill from Kilmanagh agreed that the result was ‘an anti climax’ but added that the Cats had made another heroic comeback.
In a surprising coincidence Tipperary and Dublin drew in the minor All Ireland hurling final. The replay is expected to take place on September 30.
For match report, analysis, commentary and reports see next week’s Kilkenny People.