Wexford v Tipperary, Sunday, 3.30pm, Croke Park.
This is a big game for both sides obviously with so much at stake, an All-Ireland Final in fact. In my opinion, all the pressure is on Tipperary they are the favourites to win, Wexford come into the game as underdogs but will not fear Tipperary. I expect a big performance from Davy Fitzgerald’s men in what will be another bumper crowd in Croke Park. The game throws in at 3.30pm and is live on RTE. We will be bringing updates from the below link if you can’t make the game.
Looking at Wexford, they are in bonus territory here no matter what happens so they will go out and express themselves and no matter happens they have had a successful year. Davy Fitzgerald would have watched the Tipperary game with Laois and would have seen weaknesses in the Tipperary full backline which could be exploited. Wexford have quick forwards which caused Kilkenny a lot of problems in the Leinster Final win ( first since 2004). If Wexford get the quick ball into the inside forwards whoever that maybe they will cause havoc. They have an excellent defence with Liam Ryan, Padraig Foley, and Matthew O’Hanlon. Diarmuid O’Keeffe has been exceptional so far this year in midfield. Lee Chin, Conor McDonald, and Paul Morris will all look to get the scores.
Tipperary come into on the back of a win against Laois in the All-Ireland quarter-final two weeks ago. They won 2-25 to 1-18 but were far from impressive. Liam Sheedy will know this challenge will be even tougher than that so his charges will need to up their performance by another 10 or 20% if they are to beat Wexford. They have the players mind. In defence Cathal Barrett and the Mahers (Paidi, Brendan and Ronan) who are all superb hurlers. In attack, Jason Forde, John O’Dwyer, Seamus Callanan and John McGrath will look for massive performances.
This will be the first All-Ireland semi-final meeting between the sides since 2001. It took to games on that occasion, Tipperary on the replay by 11 points and also went on to win the All-Ireland. The last three All-Ireland semi-finals Tipperary have played in were one point affairs, they lost to Galway in 2015 and 2017, before winning by a point in 2018. This will be Wexford’s first semi-final since 2007 where they lost out to Kilkenny. They last won an All-Ireland semi-final in 1996 beating Galway, they went on to win the All-Ireland beating Limerick then.
Following the win over Laois, Liam Sheedy said “Wexford certainly won’t be quaking in their boots with what they’ve seen out there today. They will be raging hot favourites. But we’re exactly where we want to be and are looking forward to coming back here in two weeks time. “As I said, they’ll be raging hot favourites. They played really, really well in the Leinster final. It will be a super crowd. They (Wexford) travel in great numbers. So, we’re looking forward to getting the Tipperary support out and getting back in two weeks time.
Wexford: Mark Fanning, Shane Reck, Liam Ryan, Simon Donohue, Paudie Foley, Matthew O’Hanlon, Shaun Murphy, Kevin Foley, Diarmuid O’Keeffe, Liam Og McGovern, Conor McDonald, Jack O’Connor, Paul Morris, Lee Chin, Rory O’Connor
Tipperary: 1. Brian Hogan – Lorrha-Dorrha 2. Cathal Barrett – Holycross-Ballycahill 3. James Barry – Upperchurch-Drombane 4. Barry Heffernan – Nenagh Éire Óg 5. Brendan Maher – Borris-Ileigh 6. Padraic Maher – Thurles Sarsfields 7. Ronan Maher – Thurles Sarsfields 8. Noel McGrath – Loughmore-Castleiney 9. Michael Breen – Ballina 10. Dan McCormack – Borris-Ileigh 11 John O’Dwyer – Killenaule 12. Niall O’Meara – Kilruane MacDonaghs 13. Jason Forde – Silvermines 14. Séamus Callanan (Capt.) – Drom-Inch
15. John McGrath – Loughmore-Castleiney
Tipperary are 8/15 to win this game, while Wexford are 2/1. The draw is 8/1. I fancy a Wexford win here at the odds as well it is great value.