This weekend saw Clare, Dublin and Galway secure wins in the fourth round of the Allianz League Division 1A and safely put the 2013 All- Ireland Champions at the top of the 1A table.
On Saturday in Parnell Park, Dublin were able to claim a victory over Kilkenny, despite a loss against Waterford in last week’s Round Three game at Walsh Park. The Dubs recovered well with a final score of 1-22 to 3-13 at the allotted 70 minutes. Despite a point separating the two sides at the 26th minute, Danny Sutcliffe was able to lead the way for the Dubs by scoring a total of 1-04 at the end of the first half and ensure Anthony Daly’s side a comfortable 10 point lead at the half time whistle.
Kilkenny once again revelled in their goal-scoring ability with Joe Power, Colin Fennelly and TJ Reid all able to hit the back of David Herrity’s net. However, the 3 goals were not enough to push past Daly’s troops and Brian Cody’s team fell short of a victory.
In Pearse Stadium, Galway played yet another impressive home-game and ensured their first win over the Premier County in seven years. Despite the absence of a number of Portumna players, the Tribesmen were able to secure a terrific 3-16 to 1-19 win over Tipperary. Their 3 goals before half-time from Niall Healy, Conor Cooney and Jonathan Glynn safely put Galway in the lead with a score of 3-08 to 0-9 at the interval.
Despite Seamus Callanan scoring 1-11 for Tipp, and the lack of scores from Anthony Cunningham’s side in the final 10 minutes, Tipperary were unable to push past the Tribesmen. Eamon O’Shea’s troops are now lagging behind at the bottom of the table after their third successive defeat and are favourites for the regulation play-offs.
The most surprising match of the weekend was between Clare and Waterford in Cusack Park in Ennis. Clare, who have been inconsistent so far in this league, played a whooper of a game and annihilated the Déise with a final score of 5-18 to 0-20. Pat Donnellan, Podge Collins, Peter Duggan and Shane O’Donnell were all able to attain goals for the Banner County and their drive for a win was evident from early on in the match. The game looked over for Dereck McGrath’s men at the half time whistle as Clare confidently lead the way with a score of 4-15 to 0-4.
However, the Déise men responded in the second half, after their lamentable first half performance, and lead the way in terms of scores. Clare were only able to add 1-03 to the scoreboard, while Waterford increased their point-tally by 0-16. Unfortunately, it was a disappointing finish for McGrath’s troops, despite reviving themselves in the second half.
Clare’s outstanding performance in the first half, ensured their third win of Division 1A and they are currently dominating the league table with 6 points. Galway, Kilkenny, Dublin and Waterford are trailing closely behind at 4 points while, Eamon O’Shea’s side who have struggled to win matches since their league opener against Waterford at Semple Stadium, are likely to play in the regulation play offs.
Round five will take place this Sunday, 23 March, with throw in at 2pm for all of the matches.
Here are the fixtures:
Clare v Galway
Tipperary v Dublin
Kilkenny v Waterford
Any predictions? Comment below.