Action from the clash of Tipperary and Galway.
Galway 0-22 Tipperary 1-18 after an epic battle in Croke Park
All-Ireland champions Tipperary relinquished their title after a titanic battle in Croke Park this afternoon when a last gasp Joe Canning point sealed a famous win for Galway.
It looked as though a draw was on the cards but a soft free awarded to Galway was landed into the Tipp defence and Canning was there to apply the finish to leave Tipperary smarting with referee Barry Kelly who had a number of questionable decisions throughout the game.
Rain before the start of the game ensured that underfoot conditions would be tricky enough for players to negotiate, but there had been plenty of warning about same and both squads had a multiplicity of footwear in their lockers to ensure that there would not be any major surprises when they ran out onto the recently re-laid surface of Croke Park.
There was great anticipation around the Capital ahead of this clash and considering the close nature of recent championship proceedings between the teams, tension was at fever pitch when the sides arrived out into the cauldron for what many people had described as being the 'mini All-Ireland Final'. That might have seemed disingenuous to Waterford and Cork who will contest the other semi-final next weekend, but given the rivalry and the fact that both sides have been dining at the top table more frequently than the other semi-finalists, it was easy to see why such statements were being made.
Tipperary full forward Seamus Callanan in action against Galway.
Such sentiments mattered not a whit when the ball was thrown in though and from the off it was a tense nervy encounter with neither side giving an inch. Indeed, it was very tactical in set-up and while Tipperary raced into a 0-4 to 0-1 lead after eight minutes with scores from Callanan, Noel McGrath and John O'Dwyer, it required a John McGrath goal in the 24th minute to send Tipp back into the lead again - Galway had scored seven of the eight points manufactured in the period from the 9th - 21st minutes thereby enjoying a very productive segment.
Tipp had weathered a Tribesmen storm of sorts and they were to go in 1-10 to 0-12 to the good at the break in a game which had failed to burst into life as was expected. Instead, it was a tense game with both full back lines under a lot of pressure - the message from both managements was obviously to go direct. And, they were.
It continued into the second half but the game opened up a lot more and was more free flowing. It was nit and tuck all the way with both sides giving it their all and as game end neared it seemed as though a draw was on the cards. There was little of nothing between them for the third year in succession and when Brendan Maher pointed from a long range free in the 38th minute, it looked as if that was that. But, Canning got the all important winner to bring his tally to 0-11 for the day - exactly half the Galway total.
Tipp's attack - normally so free flowing and full of invention was shackled by the Tribesmen in a game which they will have many regrets over.
It's the end of the road now for Tipp with the bid for two All-Ireland titles in succession dead.