Last outpost of the last chance saloon

The Under-21 hurlers attempt to topple the All-Ireland champions in Thurles this evening. The team lines out as follows:

Stephen O’Keeffe
Jamie Barron Noel Connors Paidi Prendergast
Philip Mahony (c) Darragh Fives Stephen Daniels
Stephen Roche Martin O’Neill
Eamonn Murphy Adam Brophy Padraic Mahony
Brian O’Sullivan Eoin Madigan Jake Dillon

The first thing to note is that the longer you follow sport the likelihood of a player sharing his name with that of another legend of sport approaches 1. With Stephen Roche and Martin O’Neill turning out for Waterford this year, how long before we will see Hicham El Guerrouj pulling on the white and blue? Even without the namesakes of bona fide winners it’s a formidable looking Waterford team, particularly in the back division. They should be going up with the victory in their mind, especially against a Tipperary team whose best players are coming off the back of a bruising encounter with Cork last weekend. Of course if Tipp win tonight that game will be seen as having been the best preparation. Throw-in is at 7.30pm.

Update HT: as briankenno has pointed out to me on Twitter, only one of the Tipp players played on Sunday. So was it subconscious pessimism that I clutched at that straw without checking it out first? Whether it was or not, reality bites at half-time: Waterford 0-7 (7) Tipperary 2-9 (15). Looking grim.

Update FT: they went down fighting but they still went down, and in the case of the sent-off Owen Whelan, perhaps fighting a bit too much: Waterford 1-16 (19) Tipperary 4-12 (24) – although a last-gasp Tipp goal put a better gloss on it for them. Thanks to WLR for the updates.

Update III: as any fule kno, Wikipedia is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. So Diarmuid Kirwan must be . . . well, see for yourself.

NB it wasn’t me.