Hurling & Camogie

Niamh Mallon helps Galway into All-Ireland senior camogie semi-final

The former Down forward scored two points as the Tribe set up a clash with Tipperary

Niamh Mallon
Galway's Niamh Mallon in action during the Glen Dimplex All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship quarter-final against Waterford at Croke Park. Picture: Philip Walsh

Glen Dimplex All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship quarter-final

Waterford 1-9 Galway 1-12

BACK in April, Niamh Mallon made her Galway debut as a second-half substitute against Tipperary in the Very National League final in Croke Park.

On Sunday, she returned to the Jones Road stadium and contributed two first-half points to help Galway set up a re-match with Tipperary in UMPC Nowlan Park at the end of the month.

“Look, it’s just great to get over the line today. It was a really tough game, Waterford were in the final last year and we knew they would be difficult to break down,” said the Portaferry native.

“Galway at the minute have six or seven top-class forwards and a few more pushing for places, so I have to work very hard to keep my place.

“We maybe didn’t play exceptionally well, but we got the job done and we can look forward to a semi-final now against Tipperary.”

Both Galway and Waterford fielded differently from the line-outs in the programme, with the Tribeswomen starting five not on the published 15 and Waterford three.

They each also set up with a sweeper in place and that certainly cut down the scoring options, never mind the goal chances.

Nevertheless, Mallon made an early impact and after she hit the first score from open play after seven minutes, Galway were never headed. Four minutes later she put Galway ahead once more and Ailish O’Reilly made it 0-4 to 0-2.

Although Róisín Kirwan pulled one back for Waterford, Mallon was causing problems again, setting up Niamh McPeake for their side’s fifth point after 18 minutes.

During the 10 minutes before half-time Beth Carton and Niamh Rockett pointed for Waterford, with Dervla Higgins and Niamh Niland notching long-range scores in reply for Galway. Half-time: Galway 0-7, Waterford 0-5.

Although Carrie Dolan opened the second-half scoring as she did the first with an early free, Rockett and Carton closed the gap to a point soon after, before Aoife Donohue burst through the Déise cover in the 38th minute. Her initial shot was saved by Brianna O’Regan, but Donohue batted the rebound home.

Dolan stretched the lead to 1-10 to 0-8 before Rockett was taken down for a Waterford penalty that Carton sent to the right corner.

O’Regan then pointed a free from inside her own half to leave them a point adrift, but that was to be their final score, with Carton uncharacteristically wide from a free soon after and Donohue and sub Olwyn Rabbitte closing out the game with Galway points.

The semi-final draw was made immediately after the game with Galway set to play league champions Tipperary, while All-Ireland champions Cork face surprise semi-finalists Dublin. Both games will be played on Saturday 27th July.

Galway A Donohue 1-1, C Dolan 0-4 frees, N Mallon 0-2, D Higgins, N McPeake, N Niland, A O’Reilly and O Rabbitte 0-1 each.

Waterford B Carton 1-4, 1-0 pen, 0-2 frees, N Rockett 0-3, R Kirwan and B O’Regan (free) 0-1 each