Galway’s Albert Mullins darts clear of Ballygunner’s Harley Barnes at Croke Park on Sunday last.  | Photo: Ray McManus/Sportsfile

Galway’s Albert Mullins darts clear of Ballygunner’s Harley Barnes at Croke Park on Sunday last. | Photo: Ray McManus/Sportsfile

Galway 1-15; Waterford 2-8

For the second year in a row, Waterford’s hopes of winning the All-Ireland minor hurling title ‘went west’ when they were defeated by Galway in Croke Park last Sunday.

In the end, Waterford put up a brave second half fight but were forced to play second best to a highly-rated Galway side that look in prime position to claim the title for the second year in succession.

Waterford got off to a bad start in this game which left them with what ultimately proved an insurmountable mountain to climb.

Galway raced into an early three point lead and led by 0-4 to 0-1 in the early stages, with the Waterford point coming in the opening seconds from Eamon Murphy.

However, it didn’t bode well for Waterford that the entire Galway full-forward line had scored by the fifth minute.

With Pauric Mahony scoring two frees in the sixth and ninth minutes, Waterford looked to have a firm foothold in the game and another fine point from the ever-dangerous Eamonn Murphy brought Waterford back to within a point of the Tribesmen.

But then came a major turning point. Impressive Galway centre-forward Jonathan Glynn gained possession in the centre of the field and with the surest sign of intent he drove at the heart of the Waterford defence.

None of the Waterford defenders could stop the marauding Glynn and he ran all the way in before placing the ball in the back of Darren Duggan’s net.

With their dander now firmly up, Galway quickly added to Glynn’s goal when Conor Cooney pointed to leave the Tribesmen leading by 1-6 to 0-4.

Waterford were dealt a serious blow just before the interval when full-forward Cormac Heffernan suffered a serious leg injury and had to be stretchered off to be replaced by Mount Sion’s Martin O’Neill.

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