A massive weekend hurling awaits us and to whet the appetite we will take a look here at 5 players that can have a massive impact and say on the All-Ireland semi-final meeting between Clare and Galway. Below we take a look at these 5 players.
1. Joe Canning – It is easy to see why Canning is top of our list here. He is the heartbeat of the Galway side, his performances to date surely put him up their now for the recknowing of a second successive hurler of the year award. His performance against Wexford in the Leinster round robin was superb and although quite enough in the Leinster Final against Kilkenny he still accumulated several good points. Another big game from Joe on Saturday evening I would expect.
2. Tony Kelly – If Joe Canning is important to Galway then Tony Kelly is equally as important to the Banner men. Kelly hasnt quite hit the heights of his superb year in 2013 when leading the Banner to an All-Ireland title but he has been showing form as of late. He was superb in the round robin series in Munster especially against Limerick in Ennis was his best game of the year so far. Kelly is a superb natural hurler and can easily pick off 4, 5, 6 points from play in a game.
3. Padraic Mannion – An absolute star this year for Galway in the half back line. He has been superb in every game to date, his performance against Wexford in the round robin game was terrific and the Leinster Final games he also was superb. Mannion will perhaps be given the task of marking Peter Duggan on Saturday a task I feel he will do well with.
4. John Conlon – The Clonlara man has been hurler of the year so far for me anyway. He has been superb in every game he played. Against Cork he was unmarkable in the Munster Final especially in the first half until the Cork defenders got to grips with him in the second half. Conlon is a strong ball winner, can score off either side and is capable of winning a game on his own if given the correct supply of ball, his battle with Daithi Burke will be one to look forward to.
5. Daithi Burke – The St Thomas’ man has been the best full back in the country for a couple of seasons now. He was superb last year getting an all-star award and I can safely say he will be getting one in 2018 as well. He has come up against some top players but has performed superbly. A big game on Saturday marking John Conlon will be needed but we are sure he will once again step up to the plate for the 2017 champions.