Waterford 5-15 -
Waterford joint-captains, Patrick Curran and Adam Farrell lift the Nowlan Cup as All-Ireland U-21 hurling champions for the second time in the Déise’s history after they defeated Galway in Saturday’s Final in Thurles. Photo: Inpho/Donall Farmer.
All-Ireland U-21 Hurling Final: Waterford v Galway: Score by Score
1 – 15 mins. – Waterford are defending the town end and inside a minute a clearance by Willie Hahessy along the left flank is gathered by D. J. Foran who races clear of the pursuing defenders and strikes a great shot off the stick to beat Cathal Touhy in the Galway goal. Galway’s Thomas Monaghan is fouled and Brian Molloy opens his side’s account from a free in the third minute. Molloy wins a breaking ball and sends over his second point a minute later. A Galway player is penalised for over carrying and Patrick Curran points the free. Stephen and Shane Bennett are both wide from play before Curran’s point from play gives Waterford a one goal advantage. Brian Molloy points a free after Austin Gleeson receives a somewhat harsh yellow card for a foul. Tom Devine is pulled down heading for goal and Patrick Curran’s point makes it a one goal game again. In the 12th minute Foran breaks forward from the same position that lead to his earlier goal but this time he off loads to Patrick Curran who bats the ball down into the net on the run from close range. Curran follows up with a point from a free following a foul on Shane Bennett and then, in the 14th minute sends the Galway defence the wrong way with a deft backhanded pass to Stephen Bennett who makes no mistake in crashing the ball to the net for Waterford’s third goal. D. J. Foran shoots wide but the advantage is not taken and the referee calls play back for a free which Patrick Curran points for a 3 – 5 to 0 – 3 lead.
15 – 30 mins. – Kevin McHugo points for Galway but Mikey Kearney stretches Waterford’s lead with points in the 18th and 22nd minutes. Tom Devine’s shot for goal is deflected over the bar by Cathal Touhy. Brian Molloy sends over a point from play for Galway but Austin Glesson sends over a long range effort following a foul on Conor Prunty. Molloy is again on target from a Galway free before Darragh Lyons picks out Austin Gleeson and he breaks forward to send over a great point for a 3 – 10 to 0 – 6 half time lead.
31 – 45 mins. – Galway restart confidently and, after Mark O’Brien is wide with an early chance for Waterford, Sean Linnane, Conor Whelan and Brian Molloy add points for their side inside five minutes. By the 38th minute Linnane and Eanna Burke have added two further points and a lot of the game is being played in the Waterford half. Shane Bennett is wide from a good effort on the left wing but Patrick Curran follows up with a much needed point from a free. Galway are trailing by ten points as Brian Molloy shoots for goal from a twenty metre free but his low shot goes inches wide of the post. Patrick Curran is fouled but is wide from the free near the left sideline.
46 – 60 mins. – Eanna Burke pulls back another point for Galway as they eat a little further into the Waterford lead but the tide turns in Waterford’s favour again in the 49th minute as Stephen Bennett collects the ball some twenty metres from the end line near the left sideline and sends a perfect cross for his brother Shane to ruin on to and, sliding in, stretches to flick the ball to the net. Mark O’Brien places Patrick Curran for a point in the 52nd minute and after Eanna Burke and Curran exchange further points Stephen Bennett scores a spectacular goal, going high to catch a Gleeson sideline cut that appeared to be dropping wide and strike from a most difficult angle near the end line to the far corner of the net. Conor Whelan has Galway’s last score after Jordan makes a brilliant save in the Waterford goal and in time added on Shane Bennett and Patrick Curran(F) see Waterford to a comfortable sixteen point victory and a second All Ireland U – 21 Hurling title.