Ballyhale post cricket score as King Con and Hedgo light it up in Dublin
Now, it's hotting up.
County championships all over are reaching their closing stages and the big guns are coming to the fore. The weekend just past was a huge one from a club hurling perspective with giant killings and champions falling all over the place.
It's all summarised for you here.
With the League stages complete, this weekend saw the first real championship games of the season ran off in Kilkenny. Two of the quarter finals were played as well as the relegation semi-finals.
Cheddar Plunkett's James Stephen's outfit were the first club to book their place into the last four after comfortable win over Danesfort on Saturday.
Tadhg O'Dwyer finished off two goals for the Village while Conor Browne and Luke Scanlon also hit majors. 4-19 to 0-15 was the final score as Danesfort ended a good season on a poor note.
In the other quarter, Graigue Ballycallan couldn't be separated and they'll have to do it all again next weekend. Free-taker Conor Murphy held his nerve to strike a late equaliser for last year's intermediate champs, after John Walsh had dragged Mullinavat back into the game.
As for the relegation semi-finals, there were wins for Ballyhale Shamrocks and Castlecomer. Bennettsbridge were in the county final last year but they're in a different kind of final this time around. After a stop-start season, the Bridge were ruthlessly put away by Érin's Own on a scoreline of 3-18 to 2-9 and they now go into the relegation final where they will take on St Pat's Ballyragget.
Intermediate champions in 2017, Ballyragget are one step away from going down to the second grade again. They were royally trounced by the Shamrocks by 5-27 to 2-16. With Eoin Cody and Adrian Mullen on fire in the first half, Ballyragget were down by 22 points at half-time.
Here is the quarter final draw in Kilkenny.
— Kilkenny GAA (@KilkennyCLG) September 22, 2019
It was divisional championship time in Tipperary and the north lived up to its lofty billing. The favourites emerged to book a scintillating final date, but only just. In the first game, Kiladangan started well against Templederry with a Paul Flynn goal sending them on their way, but the Kenyons wouldn't go away and they had the margin reduced to one score going into injury time.
Kiladangan held their nerve to close out for a 1-28 to 2-22 victory. They will take on Borris-Ileigh in the final who came back from the dead against Burgess in the second game of the day. They have former county hurler Conor Kenny to thank for that, he hit 1-7 from play.
Elsewhere, Clonoulty Rossmore and Éire Óg Annacarty couldn't be separated in the West final while Upperchurch and Drom and Inch will contest the mid final.
And then there were four. From the moment the quarter final draws were made in Dublin, fireworks were always on the way. Two heavyweight last eight clashes, both of them lived up to the billing. On Saturday, St Vincent's outlasted reigning champs Ballyboden St Enda's in extra-time. John 'Hedgo' Hetherton hit 0-19 (0-3 from play) for the Marino club while Rian McBride also impressed there.
Meanwhile, Cuala had too much for Kilmacud Crokes and that was largely due to Con O'Callaghan's ruthless streak. The Footballer of the Year in waiting bullied his way to two goals in the first ten minutes and Cuala never looked back from there.
An animal of a man.
Here's the semi-final draw there.
— Dublin GAA (@DubGAAOfficial) September 22, 2019
The Limerick county final will be contested by Patrickswell and Na Piarsaigh after the pair had comfortable wins over the weekend. For the Well, Aaron Gillane returned from injury but it was his younger brother Jason who scored a crucial goal.
One to watch no doubt.
— GAA JOE (@GAA__JOE) September 22, 2019
Meanhwile, Na Piarsaigh had five points to spare on Kilmallock in a 0-23 to 0-18 win.
Reigning champs Naomh Eanna were unceremoniously dumped out by an impressive Ferns side on a scoreline of 1-21 to 0-12. Captain Paul Morris led by example with three from play for Ferns while Johnny Dwyer, Ian Byrne and Benny Jordan also did damage.
In the other last eight clash, favourites St Martin's were indebted to an own goal that helped them to a 2-19 to 1-19 win over Glynn-Barntown.
The own goal was an unfortunate one as a backpass from a defender sailed straight into the net. Elsehwere, the other two quarter finals were postponed on Sunday due to waterlogged pitches.
Ruarí Óg Cushendall are back into another final after a replay win over Naomh Eoin.
Imokily and Glen Rovers were victorious in their respective quarter finals over the weekend.
The Patrick Horgan shimmy.
Dummy left with the ball and hand almost on the ground, and then go right.
— GAA JOE (@GAA__JOE) September 23, 2019
The reigning county champions fell in Offaly as Coolderry were defeated by Belmont. Elsewhere, there was disappointment for Kinnity who were defeated by Ballinamere and are heading for the intermediate grade.
Kilcormac/Killoughey, Birr and St Rynagh's are also through to the semis.