Hartley: it was heart stopping stuff

November 07, 2018

Ballygunner manager Fergal Hartley. ©INPHO/Tommy Dickson.

Ballygunner manager Fergal Hartley admits that he has never been involved in a game like last Sunday in his GAA career.

The Waterford champions and Clare counterparts Ballyea locked horns in the Munster club SHC semi-final and it took two periods of extra time before Hartley’s charges finally won by 2-26 to 2-23.

The game had everything despite being played in dreary conditions in early November. No team deserved to lose, but it is Ballygunner who go forward and face defending champions Na Piarsaigh in a repeat of last year’s provincial final.

Hartley revealed to the Waterford News & Star that he was mentally drained after such a game that pulled on every emotion in his body.

“Twenty seven years I’ve been involved in the Ballygunner senior team as a player and a manager and I don’t even remember being involved in a game like that,” said Hartley.

“It was heart stopping stuff. It was heroic stuff, on both sides, not just the Ballygunner side. Ballyea didn’t deserve to lose that game and you couldn’t really say that we deserved to win it either. That’s a cliché but on days like this it’s the reality and we’re just thanking our lucky stars that we came out on top.”

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