1996 Leinster Hurling Final

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Fairplayalways
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1996 Leinster Hurling Final

Post by Fairplayalways » Mon Apr 05, 2021 12:04 am

I watched this game start to finish tonight as it pops up on you tube most nights I look up old games and I kept thinking "sur that game wasnt that good really"..but.....what a game of hurling this was...and I will say it again, we rarely (and I mean rarely) see such intensiy in games any more, and anyone that says hurling is now more skillfull, well I dont know, this game be it only 25 years ago this summer (not 30 or 40 years ago like most games me/Offaly folk say were great games)...and anyone who says we now dont have the hurlers, well having watched this game back, we had 15 on the pitch, and absolutely no disrespect to any of the subs or panel members, we just didnt have the subs of the standard of the 15 on the pitch..Joe Dooley got injured, and while it was nota foul, and Dave Guiney got injured in same incident over at sideline, referee gave the line ball correctly to Wexford, but when both players get injured, and Joe Dooley got a nast cut to the back of his head, I have seen "throw ball" given in such circumstances...for the record, Adrian Fenlon took the line ball and Wexford got their second goal from it...Michael Duignan, what a game he had that day, got a goal straight back though in fairess...Kevin Kinahan and many Offaly players that day were just wore out, it was their third year on the trot (94.95 and 96) and as I said above, we just didnt have the replacements...Wexford were fresh as daisies and although were out of the game for a large part of second half, Offaly with a wonderful sunny day, were energy sapped and tired, and subs unfortunately couldnt reach the tempo required of that high intensity game...alot of the lads did come back to win 2 years later in 1998 in fairness...anyway, hard to believe 1996 we were defendin a Leinster title that we havent won since...anyone at the game and have memories do reply..hopefully we will have hurling backk soon in some guise...
Last edited by Fairplayalways on Tue Apr 06, 2021 9:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

Kevin
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Re: 1996 Leinster Hurling Final

Post by Kevin » Mon Apr 05, 2021 6:21 pm

Was not present, but remember it reasonably well.

The final scoreline did not reflect the battle that it was. The match was there in the melting pot for a long time.

Recall Fitzhenry stood on his head and snuffed out multiple good goal chances that could have turned things in our favor.

As an aside we had to endure another Fitzhenry magic act in 2004 when another Leinster title eluded us.
Kevin Clancey. Signed out of respect for players and all involved with Offaly.

Fairplayalways
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Re: 1996 Leinster Hurling Final

Post by Fairplayalways » Mon Apr 05, 2021 10:13 pm

Fitzherny was a fine keeper and sort of forgot about in ways when people talk of great keepers of modern hurling such as Brendan Cummins and Davy Fitsgerald, and of course Joe Quaid of that era.. etc...he was always one of the best modern day keepers I seen...to be fair Liam Coughlan saved Offaly a few times too in that game..another keeper (inside Offaly anyway) who is sort of forgot about when we mention good keepers Offaly had..he hadnt a long Offaly career from memory..Guiney was trying to riall up Michael Duignan that day (maybe it was the other way too but we dont know) but Guiney was the one making the runs at Duignan on and off...the shoulder Adrian Fenlon gave Duignan the time a Wexford player was on the ground and the ball broke abit from him, and Duignan and Johnny Dooley were winding up to pull on the ball but didnt and Fenlon ran in with a monster of a shoulder and Duignan moved a little (you cannot see it fully on the camera) but didnt fall or anything from what I seen...a testament of that game I noticed last night was there was times when RTE had no time to show the replays of high octane incidents as immediately something else happened...will we see Offaly with such fire in their bellies again...few games have such intensity now...no helmets compulsory that time either (off the top of my head I thought they were at that time to be honest 1996) which added greatly to seeing the endeavour both teams were putting in....lost by 8 points after but the scoreline didnt reflect the match..

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Re: 1996 Leinster Hurling Final

Post by biffinbanner » Mon Apr 05, 2021 10:14 pm

i remember leaving croke park that day downhearted but proud of the offaly performance.it was an epic game in the balance until the last 5 min. i agree about fitzhenry. he changed the thrust of the game on several occasions. there is no doubt in my mind he was the best keeper ive ever seen. and he done a job on us too in 04.

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Bord na Mona man
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Re: 1996 Leinster Hurling Final

Post by Bord na Mona man » Tue Apr 06, 2021 11:44 am

There were several classic games in that era. The hurling was a lot more off the cuff and improvised. There was a real intensity to it.
So much of the outcome hinged on the individual tussles. It was like a war comprised of 14 different battles.
You were on the edge of your seat watching it unfold.

1996 was obviously disappointing from an Offaly point of view because we were all hoping for a bounce back from 1995.
Offaly were the best team in the country the year before and the Clare defeat was bitterly disappointing.

However Wexford had taken a leaf from Clare's book and put in a similar savage fitness regime which helped them close out stronger.
Several of their key men were veterans by then and they had a real motivation to go and finally win something.
They didn't implode in the closing stages like Wexford teams used to do before that.
I also don't remember them beating Kilkenny in the Leinster semi particularly concerning us in Offaly. Wexford had beaten Kilkenny in 1981, 1984 and 1988 before falling to Offaly. This may have fed the notion that beating Kilkenny was their cup final.

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Re: 1996 Leinster Hurling Final

Post by Sur lookit » Tue Apr 06, 2021 1:43 pm

I remember being away in the Canaries for that game, sitting in the sun in a bat with the match belting out on the radio and most people as always roaring on opposition. Last few minutes they pulled away. In fairness they were a side (Wexford) who had been through the mill down the years and some great hurling men, who you would be glad to see have an All Ireland medal...albeit not necessarily at our expense.

I remember the All Ireland that year, after 94, I felt I had to support Limerick but was happy to see Wexico get over the line in the end.

We had the bare 15, outside of that we struggled particularly up in the forwards.

Fairplayalways
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Re: 1996 Leinster Hurling Final

Post by Fairplayalways » Tue Apr 06, 2021 3:52 pm

well put all and like me most didnt begrudge Wexford a Leinster and All Ireland that year (at our expense in Leinster I know)...Wexford I always maintain "got" Offaly one or two Leinster titles in the 1980s..1984 was one in ways..Wexford done the the impossible knocking out 2 in a row All Ireland champions Kilkenny...for us to beat them yet again, similar to 1981 although I barely remember 1981 bar the final win over Galway..people will say "oh that Offaly team would have beaten Kilkenny in 81 or 84..we dont know that as we all know Kilkenny in a Leinster final (or any game) are not going to lie down to easily..they beat Offaly in 1982 final with the late goal...that was Offalys wonderful chance of making 3 Leinsters in a row and that team was only getting better upto the 1982 defeat..1983 Kilkenny as Leinster and All Ireland champions beat us by 7 points,,,only goal in that game being a marvelous Christy Heffernan over head swing when the game was very close at the time, they pulled away a little after the goal wto win by 7...84 Tony Dorans late goal dethroned the 2 in a row Kilkenny only for us to go 0-08 to no score up...yes..Wexford won the remainder of the game by 2-11 to 1-07 when Wexford eventutally got going and were to loose 1-15 to 2-11..so they will view the bad start to that game as the reason they lost..they were coming at us hammer and thongs at the finish as fari as I remember...anyway...1996..we just ran out of steam after 2/3 seasons on the road with a small enough panel...finally jsut mentioning the AI final of 1996 I was kind of hoping Limerick would win as they lost in 1994...Wexford had got their Leinster first since 1979 in 1996, so I was kind of thinking "that will do them for this year" but fair dues they went on and won..and that wasnt a great final by any means from two teams you would normally expect open attacking hurling..finals can be like that as we all know...

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Re: 1996 Leinster Hurling Final

Post by Liam2020 » Sat Jun 12, 2021 11:22 pm

I rember been there, we ford got a soft penalty, we should have got 2 penalties. I rember Joe errity getting walloped by gerr cuss as he bore down on goal.,probaly was a send off. great skill and first time hurling.
, imagine if they had today's light sliotair.

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