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I’m going to stick with Waterford this week! I was delighted to be wrong last weekend and, talking to a lot of people within the county, an awful lot them got it wrong too. I didn’t see that level of performance coming – they were unbelievable last Saturday against all the odds as well.
It was an unbelievable first half. They were frightening for the first hour. Bear in mind that Conor Gleeson was sent off! It was one of those that if Gleeson was on the field and we had 15 men, God only knows what the score would have been.
Saturday 13:30 – Tipperary v Waterford
But, here they are now. The Déise in the quarter-final with the momentum behind them and if they can replicate the level of performance that they showed last weekend, I’d give them every chance this weekend.
I suppose last weekend I had many people asking me if they should back Waterford at 2/1 and I said, ‘no, hold off’. But I was also saying don’t back Galway at 2/5 because I didn’t know if you could trust Galway. For this game, I can’t understand how Tipperary are the favourites and Waterford are such large odds, like they were before.
This is a flip of a coin and we’ve seen how good Tipperary were in that first half against Limerick. It was a scintillating display in the first half and if Tipp can replicate that show – with a little bit more in the second half – that should be good enough to get them over the line.
But, there’s something telling me that momentum is with Waterford. If they bring that level of pace and attack in waves like they did to Galway, they’re going to be very difficult to beat. Throw in the venue as well, there are wide open spaces in Pairc Ui Chaoimh, which will suit this Waterford team.
My head overruled Waterford last weekend, but my head and my heart is telling me that Waterford will pick up the win on Saturday and drive on to the All-Ireland semi-final.
You look at how Limerick dismantled Tipperary in that second half, and if Waterford can get up the pitch of the early and bring that frightening display of hurling that they brought last weekend, I believe Liam Cahill’s side will win by 4-6 points. For big odds there, I’m going to go for Waterford to win by that margin.
There are loads in the goalscorer markets you can take a look at. Waterford’s Austin Gleeson is in a rich vein of form, while Jack Fagan got the first goal last weekend. The way Waterford attack, anyone can pop up and score.
From a Tipperary point of view, John ‘Bubbles’ O’Dwyer, Séamus Callanan and Jake Morris are the men if you wanted to pick a player from Tipperary who could possibly raise a green flag at the weekend. Morris would be my pick if you fancy the men from the Premier County to strike first.
But, I’m going to go for Dessie Hutchinson of Waterford to get the opening goal. I thought he was brilliant last weekend, albeit he didn’t get on the scoreboard. The work he put in, like his assists, was class. I just thought he was incredible up top against Galway on Saturday.
The last time both these two sides met he got two goals in the National League and that’s going to be an intriguing battle between Hutchinson and Cathal Barrett. I just have a funny feeling he may raise a green flag early here.
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