The county’s hurlers have endured a torrid time in this year’s National Hurling League and their misery was capped this afternoon when they were beaten by Wicklow in the Division 2B relegation play-off. The Garden County won today’s match at O’Connor Park in Tullamore by 0-16 to 0-15 and so it’s us who drop down to Division 3A for next year.
Wicklow led pretty much most of the way today, establishing a lead of four points at one stage in the first half. The gap was down to just two at the break, however, and there remained very little between the sides as the second half progressed.
When the Westerners levelled the game with ten minutes left to play, it looked as if the great escape might be on for them. It wasn’t to be, however, as the Leinster team just did enough over the closing minutes to eke out a one-point win and so ensure their survival.
Derek Walsh’s team now face into what’s likely to be a tough Christy Ring Cup competition. That gets going next month, with Mayo hosting Kildare in the opening round. Given that the Lilywhites have been operating in Division 2A this spring, this will be a tough one for our lads but hopefully they can put today’s disappointment behind them and give their summer campaign a decent rattle.