Liam 2017: GAA Hurling Championship
GAA HURLING CHAMPIONSHIP In a dramatic final before a packed Croke Park, Galway finally overcame a talented and skilful Waterford side despite not scoring a goal and conceding two. But Joe Canning the 4th highest scorer in modern senior hurling was on top form (0-9) while captain David Burke (0-4) split the posts from midfield to finally break Waterford hearts in the final minutes. After Galway lost two finals in the last 5 years their day finally arrived and the emotions were raised even further as fans remembered two of Galway s sporting heroes . Joe McDonagh - long remembered for his rendition of The West Awake after they won in 1980 - and Tony Keady, Man of the Match in their 1988 win - both passed away in 2016 & 2017 respectively. As a contest neutral fans were looking forward to a tight game between two great attacking sides packed with youth and experience. They didnt disappoint as both squads contributed to a memorable final. Remember earlier in the year Galway came back from 10 points down to beat Waterford in the league quarter final. Since they never looked back and this year savoured a clean sweep of victories - the Walsh Cup, the Allianz League, the Leinster championship and now the All-Ireland. And if you re scratching your head why Galway won the Leinster Championship, the decision to allow them to play in a more competitive province has certainly paid dividends for the county and the fans. Lets not forget either that it was only in 2015 that player protests led to manager Anthony Cunningham losing his job. New boss Micheál Donoghue, deserves huge credit for uniting the camp and building a winning group of players who had put their credibility on the line. Now 2 years later Galway captain David Burke raised the Liam MacCarthy Cup for the 5th time in the county s history and the 1st victory in 29 years. LIAM 2017 features one of the classic All Ireland Hurling finals of recent times and a reminder why our national GAA games remains the most exciting field sports game in the world!