Offaly minor hurlers advance to semi-final meeting with Kilkenny

November 8, 2018

Leinster MHC: Offaly 0-16, Westmeath 0-14

Offaly minor hurlers came through a tough test from Westmeath to book their place in the Leinster Championship semi-final, where they will have home advantage against Kilkenny.

Offaly travelled to Mullingar aiming to avoid losing to Westmeath at this grade for the second year in a row, but were pushed all the way by the home side.

Westmeath led by 0-8 to 0-5 at half time, but gradually in the second half, Offaly pegged back their deficit and eventually took a sleder lead with 15 minutes remaining.

It was amazing that the game did not feature a goal, for Westmeath were extremely unlucky not to raise a couple of green flags and Offaly also spurned one or two glorious opportunities.

In the first half, Offaly were slow to settle and took a long time to score from play. Yet only trailing by three at half time was not a particularly bad position to be in.

In the second half, corner forward Stephen Quirke hit some fantastic frees, and by the end he had contributed 0-8 from placed balls, including a crucial ’65’ near the end.

Elsewhere, Sean Cleary and Adrian Hynes chipped in with three points each, while Quirke and Aodhan Kealey were on target one each from play also.

Offaly will be pleased with this result after their extra-time defeat to Wexford in the first round and will now have over a month to prepare for the visit of the reigning Leinster champions.

Offaly: Conor Clancy; Micheal Cleary, Pat Camon, Simon Og Lyons; Brendan Murphy, Shane McKelvey, David King; Adrian Hynes, Peter Geraghty; Sean Cleary, Aodhan Kealey, Patrick Murphy; Stephen Quirke, Thomas Carroll, Eoin Ryan.

Subs Used: Joe O’Connor, Thomas Geraghty, Donal Morkan.