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1959 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final

The 1959 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final took place on 6 September 1959 at Croke Park, Dublin. It was the 72nd All-Ireland final and was contested by Waterford and Kilkenny.

1959 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Final
1959 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final programme.jpg
Event1959 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship
Date6 September 1959
4 October 1959 (replay)
VenueCroke Park, Dublin
RefereeG. Fitzgerald (Limerick)
77,285 (replay)

The match ended level. This was the last All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Final at the end of which the teams finished level until 2012.

The first game ended level with a score of 1-17 to 5-5. A replay took place at the same venue four weeks later on 4 October 1959. On that occasion the Leinster champions lost to their Munster opponents on a score line of 3-12 to 1-10.

This was Waterford's second ever All-Ireland title. They have yet to win a third.

All-Ireland finalEdit


The All-Ireland senior hurling final saw Waterford lining out in only their third ever championship decider. They last played in the All-Ireland final two years earlier in 1957 when they were defeated by Kilkenny. Waterford last won the title in 1948 when they defeated Dublin.

Match reportsEdit

Sunday 6 September was the date of the 1959 All-Ireland senior hurling final between Waterford and Kilkenny. The attendance of 73,707 was not disappointed and was treated to some splendid hurling by both teams in one of the great All-Ireland finals. An exciting first half of hurling saw Waterford take a five-point lead. Immediately after the restart Tom Cheasty scored a memorable point after he stormed past five Kilkenny defenders who, according to Radio Éireann commentator Michael O'Hehir, fell around him ‘like dying wasps.’ Waterford were masters at pure hurling; however, the downside of this was that they found it difficult to close out games and win easily. This was a factor on this occasion against Kilkenny. Two quick goals by Tommy O'Connell put Kilkenny ahead by two goals with just a minute left in the game. With the score at 5-5 to 0-17 Waterford needed a goal. A stroke of luck saw ‘the Decies’ awarded a sideline cut. Team captain Frankie Walsh stepped up to take it when he saw Séamus Power bursting out of midfield with his hand raised looking for the sliothar. Walsh fluffed the sideline cut and the sliothar only went a few yards. However, Larry Guinan was running forward and he collected the sliothar. He had only one thing in mind as he headed straight for the goalmouth. He fired in a shot that full-back Jim ‘Link’ Walsh deflected past his goalkeeper Ollie Walsh. The final whistle blew immediately and the score line read Waterford 1-17, Kilkenny 5-5.

Four weeks later on 4 October 77,285 returned to Croke Park to see the second installment of the All-Ireland final between Waterford and Kilkenny. The second game began terribly for Waterford, in spite of playing with a strong wind, and they trailed by 1-4 to 0-1 after only twelve minutes of play. Frankie Walsh also had a torrid time as he failed to raise the sliothar for a close-in free. All of a sudden, however, Waterford clicked into gear. Mick Flannelly, a player from the Mount Sion club, goaled to get Waterford’s game back on track. Tom Cunningham added a second with a brilliant overhead strike before Tom Cheasty also goaled. After a disastrous start Waterford led by 3-6 to 1-8 at the interval. The second-half saw Joe Harney and Austin Flynn excelling in defence, so much so that Kilkenny only scored two points from Eddie Keher over the course of the thirty minutes. Waterford, on the other hand, forged ahead with Walsh and Cheasty excelling. After 120 minutes of hurling played out in front of an aggregate attendance of 150,000 Waterford took their second All-Ireland title by 3-12 to 1-10.

TV coverageEdit

The match was recorded by the BBC and highlights where shown in Sportsview on BBC television on the Wednesday following the final.[1] The commentary was done by Kenneth Wolstenholme who is famous for the words “some people are on the pitch, they think its all over, it is now” at the end of the 1966 Association Football World Cup Final.[2]

Match detailsEdit

First gameEdit

Waterford1-17 – 5-5Kilkenny
S.Fitzgerald (0-5), T. Cheasty (0-5), S. Power (1-0), P. Grimes (0-3), L. Guinan (0-2), J. Kiely (0-2). T. O'Connell (3-0), R. Carroll (1-2), W. Dwyer (1-1), P. Kelly (0-1), S. Clohessy (0-1).
Attendance: 73,707
Referee: G. Fitzgerald (Limerick)


Waterford3-12 – 1-10Kilkenny
T. Cheasty (2-2), F. Walsh (0-8), M. Flannelly (1-1), L. Guinan (0-1). W. Dwyer (0-5), D. Heaslip (1-1), E. Keher (0-2), S. Clohessy (0-1), M. Walsh (0-1).
Attendance: 77,285
Referee: G. Fitzgerald (Limerick)


  1. ^ ""They think it's all over…"". Hogan Stand. 31 August 2017. Retrieved 31 August 2017.
  2. ^ Wolstenholme, Kenneth (13 September 1959). "Why Keep This Great Game Such A Big Secret?". Sunday Press. Retrieved 8 February 2007.