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Galway defeat Clare to reach Semi 24-07-2016

joe canning.jpg

Goals in either half from Conor Cooney and Joe Canning (1-8) helped Galway to a deserved 2-17 to 0-17 victory over Clare at Semple Stadium.

Canning was exceptional for the winners, as was debutant Adrian Tuohy, while David Burke scored two stunning points as well as setting up Canning's three-pointer at the start of the second half - a key score which left ten between them. With 31,690 looking on, the Banner County didn’t live up to their pre-match billing, but Colm Galvin (0-5) certainly didn’t deserve to be on the losing side.

Victory means Galway - who worked their socks off today - will face Munster champions Tipperary on August 14th for a place in the 2016 All-Ireland SHC final, with Kilkenny and Waterford contesting the other semi-final in a fortnight.

The beaten Leinster finalists had the wind behind them in the first half and compiled a seven-point interval lead, 1-10 to 0-6, with Cooney supplying the goal in the 15th minute. Canning drilled over six first-half points – four frees and two ‘45’s.

Tony Kelly opened the scoring from a routine third-minute free and added the Banner’s second point from another free but, in between, Johnny Coen and Joseph Cooney replied quickly as the lead changed hands inside the first five minutes before Canning doubled the gap with his side’s third successive point (free) on seven minutes.

Canning’s second converted free restored Galway’s advantage after Galvin equalised and the Tribesmen moved four points clear when Conor Cooney’s low shot beat Andrew Fahy at his near post. Galvin and Joseph Cooney traded points to leave it double scores at the midway stage in the first half, 1-5 to 0-4.

Canning (free) and David Burke pointed and the former then followed up with three more scores (‘65’, free, ‘65’) after Kelly registered the Banner’s fifth point from a free. Kelly closed the first-half scoring with a point from play as the Tribe led by seven at the midway juncture.

Canning had the ball in the Clare net again within 22 seconds of the restart but the Banner replied quickly with a brace of Kelly frees and a third Galvin point to cancel that three-pointer out within four minutes – 2-10 to 0-9! Canning brought his tally to 1-7 with a sublime free into the wind from distance and, after a long spell without a score at either end, Galvin’s fourth point reduced the deficit to seven with 22 minutes left.

Corner back Padraic Mannion and Kelly swapped points and the winners still led by seven going into the last quarter. Points from substitute Conor McGrath and centre back David McInerney drew the Banner closer. McGrath cancelled out a Cyril Donnellan score and another sub, Colin Ryan, fired over a free as the gap came down to four with ten minutes left.

But Cathal Mannion steadied Galway and Canning dropped a free over before Galvin replied with his fifth terrific score. Burke’s second point – a screamer – left two goals between the teams with two minutes left.

Ryan pointed a free in the first of five added minutes but Aidan Harte clipped over the last score as Galway advanced to the last four with a solid display.


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