Salthill/Knocknacarra v Tuam Stars: Preview

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Updated: October 22, 2011

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The Galway Senior Football Championship semi-final replay between Salthill/Koncknacarra and Tuam Stars will take place this Sunday at 2pm at Tuam stadium.

If Tuam are to advance to their first final since 1995 they face the prospect of five games in five weeks, whereas Salthill/Knocknacarra had to wait ten weeks to finally find out who their opposition were before last week’s dour 1-5 to 0-8 stalemate.

The city outfit have Sean Armstrong to thank as his added-time equaliser secured the draw after a brilliant second-half comeback from Tuam almost saw them sneak into the final.

Salthill/Knocknacarra raced into an early lead with club stalwart Seamie Crowe rattling the net after just six minutes but it took Tuam 18 minutes to register their first point after Salthill’s full-back Finian Hanley made an uncharacteristic handling error and the impressive Shane Gaffney tipped over for an easy score.

A second-half to forget was dominated by Tuam and with minutes left found themselves a point up only for Armstrong to level the tie and force the game into a replay.

The championship itself was held up for over four months due to Mountbellew/Moylough’s drawn out saga with Míchaél Breathnachs, who fielded a player that was deemed ineligible, in their win over the North-East Galway side.

The well-publicised objection took several months and a replayed game, won by Mountbellew/Moylough, before seeing a resolution. The Black and Amber went on to lose to Tuam in the following round.

It has been one of the most controversial and delayed championships in years and, in what has been coined ‘the year of the replay’ there is more than a hint of yet another replay on the cards.

However, Salthill/Knocknacarra should have learned from ‘the Stars’ comeback and will hope the extra game holds to them if it goes down to the wire.

Verdict: Salthill/Knocknacarra

Nominated for 2011 Realex Web Awards

www.victorchandler.com

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