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David McBrien celebrates scoring Mayo's first goal. James Crombie/INPHO
Tense

Second-half surge proves the difference as Mayo see off Galway

A strong start to the second half saw Mayo blitz Galway for 1-5 without reply.

Mayo 1-10

Galway 0-12

Kevin Fallon reports from Pearse Stadium

A MASSIVE SURGE after half-time which saw them blitz Galway for 1-5 without reply paved the way for Mayo to send their arch rivals crashing out of the 2023 All-Ireland championship and advance to the quarter-finals, where they will play one of Dublin, Derry or Armagh following tomorrow morning’s draw.

Galway, one of the leading favourites to win the All-Ireland, should have led by more than 0-8 to 0-3 at the break having played with the wind and they paid the price after the restart as Mayo, after a lethargic opening half despite a bright start, got on top and with Diarmuid O’Connor leading the way, they did just about enough to edge out their neighbours at a packed Pearse Stadium.

Galway, boosted by the availability of injury doubts captain Seán Kelly and Damien Comer, won the toss and opted to play with the strong breeze towards the city end of the Salthill venue.

Galway made one late change with Seán Fitzgerald coming into the defence in place of corner-forward Ian Burke in a move which saw John Daly push up into attack.

jason-doherty-and-damien-comer Mayo’s Jason Doherty and Damien Comer of Galway. James Crombie / INPHO James Crombie / INPHO / INPHO

Mayo made four changes with Padraig O’Hora unavailable and not included in the matchday squad, with Conor Loftus, Mattie Ruane and James Carr also making way as Eoghan McLaughlin, Kevin McLoughlin, Jason Doherty and Tommy Conroy came into the team.

The exchanges were intense from the outset — indeed before Tyrone referee Seán Hurson threw the ball in — with Mayo making the stronger start against the breeze as they opened up a 0-3 to 0-1 lead after seven minutes with Stephen Coen fisting them in front before Tommy Conroy and McLoughlin kicked points after Peter Cooke had got Galway off the mark after collecting a long kickout from goalkeeper Connor Gleeson.

But Mayo failed to build on that solid start and remarkably did not score again for the remainder of the opening half, during which time they kicked four wides and rarely troubled the home defence.

Shane Walsh landed a free to reduce the margin and after Comer had a shot saved by Colm Reape, the Annaghdown man tied the sides after 14 minutes after a pass from Daly as he surged forward.

jack-carney-david-mcbrien-and-jordan-flynn-with-paul-conroy Mayo’s Jack Carney, David McBrien and Jordan Flynn with Paul Conroy of Galway. James Crombie / INPHO James Crombie / INPHO / INPHO

Comer continued to cause plenty of trouble for the Mayo full-back line and he helped set up John Maher to fist Galway in front for the first time at the end of the opening quarter.

Matthew Tierney made it five points in a row for Galway when he first pointed after a turnover and then tapped over a mark when he collected a good delivery from Paul Conroy.

Walsh, who hit four of Galway’s six wides in the opening half, extended their lead with a free but then missed what seemed an easier kick before Cillian McDaid ended a barren spell of eight minutes when he pointed five minutes before the interval to push the lead to 0-8 to 0-3 at the break.

Galway suffered a big blow when Comer, troubled by a hamstring all summer, went off at the break and former All Star Ian Burke came on to replace him, while Mayo also made a change with Enda Hession coming on for Doherty.

The tough exchanges continued, both on and off the ball, with Ryan O’Donoghue getting Mayo’s first score in 34 minutes when he tapped over a free.

O’Donoghue then cut the gap to a goal with an excellent effort from the left and their superb start to the second-half stepped up several notches when full-back David McBrien went forward, exchanged passed with Aidan O’Shea, and rifled the ball to the net to tie the match at 1-5 to 0-8 after 44 minutes.

The Mayo supporters in the crowd erupted and had further cause for celebration when former All Star Cillian O’Connor announced his arrival on the field with the lead point.

ryan-odonoghue-and-peter-cooke Mayo’s Ryan O'Donoghue and Peter Cooke of Galway. James Crombie / INPHO James Crombie / INPHO / INPHO

Galway responded but Reape produced another good save, this time to deny Tierney, before Mayo came downfield and Paddy Durcan doubled their lead with a point from distance to lead by 1-7 to 0-8 after 48 minutes.

Galway, with skipper Kelly continuing to struggle with the ankle injury picked up in the closing stages of their loss to Armagh last week, got their first score of the second-half after 55 minutes from experienced Paul Conroy after Durcan had got his second point of the contest.

That left Mayo 1-8 to 0-9 ahead with 15 minutes left. Tommy Conroy fisted a point for Mayo and Walsh responded with a free to leave two between them with seven minutes remaining.

Another free from Walsh cut the gap to the minimum as the match slipped into four minutes of added time before James Carr gave Mayo a two-point cushion in the 73rd minute.

Galway came with a final surge which saw a McDaid flick knocked away for a ’45 and in the final onslaught a snapshot from Maher flew over the bar as Mayo marched on and the 2022 All-Ireland finalists Galway bowed out.

Scorers for Mayo: James O’Donoghue 0-3 (1f); David McBrien 1-0; Tommy Conroy, Paddy Durcan 0-2; Stephen Coen, Kevin McLaughlin, Cillian O’Connor 0-1.

Scorers for Galway: Shane Walsh 0-4 (4f); Matthew Tierney (1f), John Maher 0-2; Peter Cooke, Cillian McDaid, Damien Comer, Paul Conroy 0-1.

Mayo:

1. Colm Reape (Knockmore)

5. Sam Callinan (Ballina Stephenites), 3. David McBrien (Ballaghderreen), 23. Eoghan McLaughlin (Westport)

2. Jack Coyne (Ballyhaunis), 18. Jason Doherty (Burrishoole), 7. Paddy Durcan (Castlebar Mitchels)

8. Stephen Coen (Hollymount/Carramore), 13. Aidan O’Shea (Breaffy)

10. Diarmuid O’Connor (Ballintubber), 24. Kevin McLoughlin (Knockmore), 12. Jordan Flynn (Crossmolina Deel Rovers)

15. Ryan O’Donoghue (Bellmullet), 11. Jack Carney (Kilmeena), 17. Tommy Conroy (The Neale)

Subs:

  • 19. Enda Hession (Garrymore) for Jason Doherty (half-time)
  • 25. Cillian O’Connor (Ballintubber) for Kevin McLaughlin (45)
  • 9. Matthew Ruane (Breaffy) for Jack Carney (59)
  • 14. James Carr (Ardagh) for Aidan O’Shea (63)
  • 22. Donnacha McHugh (Castlebar Mitchels) for Jack Coyne (73)

Galway:

1. Connor Gleeson (Dunmore MacHales)

2. Johnny McGrath (Caherlistrane), 17. Seán Fitzgerald (Bearna), 4. Jack Glynn (Claregalway)

3. Seán Kelly (Moycullen), 5. Cian Hernon (Bearna), 6. John Daly (Mountbellew Moylough)

8. Paul Conroy (St. James’s), 10. Matthew Tierney (Oughterard)

7. Cillian McDaid (Monivea Abbey), 11. Peter Cooke (Moycullen), 9. John Maher (Salthill Knocknacarra)

12. Johnny Heaney (Killannin), 14. Damien Comer (Annaghdown), 15. Shane Walsh (Kilmacud Crokes)

Subs:

  • 13. Ian Burke (Corofin) for Damien Comer (half-time)
  • 23. Cathal Sweeney (Salthill Knocknacarra) for Johnny Heaney (48)
  • 24. Robert Finnerty (Salthill Knocknacarra) for Cian Hernon (63)
  • 26. Tomo Culhane (Salthill Knocknacarra) for Peter Cooke (69)

Referee: Seán Hurson (Tyrone).  

Written by The 42 Team and posted on the42.ie

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