Kilkenny’s poor record at Under-21 level continued as Eddie Brennan’s side came unstuck in a dramatic defeat to Westmeath, while there were also wins for Carlow and Offaly in the Leinster U21 Hurling Championship.
After running Dublin close in 2014, the Midlanders went one better tonight to book their place in the semi-finals of the competition.
There was little to choose between the sides in the opening half with Westmeath holding a one-point advantage at the break of 0-09 to 0-08, with Darragh Clinton the star of the show.
The Devlin corner forward hit seven of Westmeath’s nine points and five minutes into the second half Westmeath struck for the only goal of the game through Warren Casserly.
It proved to be the decisive score and gave them a two-point advantage which they maintained until the full-time whistle, though there was still time for late drama at Cusack Park.
The Cats have claimed only one provincial title at this grade since 2009, but were awarded a penalty late on to snatch victory, but the ball was hit wide and Westmeath were left to bask in a famous victory.
Wide with the penalty and we win!!!!!— westmeathgaaofficial (@westmeath_gaa) May 25, 2016
At Netwatch Cullen Park, Carlow finished with 14 men but still had too much for a fancied Laois team to book a last four date with Offaly.
Laois had reached the minor decider three years ago and led at the break by three points, 0-12 to 0-9.
In a close contest throughout, James Doyle goaled for the home side to further highlight their progress at underage level.
Waiting for them will be the Offaly who were far too strong for Kildare in Newbridge.
The Faithful County led 3-07 to 1-07 at the interval, but blew the home side away in the second half, outscoring their opponents by 16 points.
Leinster Under-21 Hurling Championship results: Westmeath 1-11 Kilkenny 0-12, Carlow 1-17 Laois 1-15, Kildare 1-12 Offaly 5-22— RTÉ GAA (@RTEgaa) May 25, 2016