A goal from Sub Jack Doyle in the 36th minute proved crucial as Kilkenny fended off a late Wexford surge to emerge with a lone points win at Netwatch Cullen Park.
The Cats looked content as they went 1-9 to 0-5 after 36 minutes but Wexford, with Cian Byrne showing immense accuracy from Frees, gradually closed the gap. However, five minutes into injury time, full-strike forward Jack Redmond was inches behind with a try to score that would have earned extra time.
Kilkenny were more composed early on when Billy Drennan hit the Cats with a 50-yard free throw, but they had to wait until the fifth minute for their second point from Denis Walsh.
Model County got their opening score from a 12th-minute free point from Cian Byrne, but Kilkenny’s response was quick and they built a 0-7 to 0-4 interval lead.
Doyle’s all-important goal came after the break, but Wexford responded with six unanswered points from Byrne (4fs), Jack Redmond and Richie Lawlor, leaving the sides just two points apart with ten minutes remaining, 1-10 0-11. However, Redmond missed a chance to force overtime with the final play of the game, allowing Kilkenny to progress to an All Ireland final with Limerick.
Goalscorers – Kilkenny: B Drennan 0-8fs; JDoyle 1-0; D. Walsh 0-3; A Hickey, T Clifford 0-1 each. Wexford: C. Byrne 0:10 (9fs), J. Redmond 0:2; C Molloy, R Lawlor, T Kinsella 0-1 each.
Kilkenny – A Tallis; N Rowe, S Purcell, P Lennon; J Fitzpatrick, P Moylan, P Langton; K Doyle, D Walsh; A Hickey, T Clifford, P McDonald; B. Drennan, G. Dunne, T. Dunne. Substitutes: J Doyle for T Dunne (ht), I Byrne for McDonald (ht), J Walsh for G Dunne (41), I Byrne for Walsh (54), E O’Brien for Hickey (55).
Wexford-C. Byrne; Ryan E, Foley C, Redmond AJ; Barrett J, Molloy C, Scallan K; D Carley, L Kavanagh; R Lawlor, C Byrne-Dunbar, S O’Hagan; C Browne, J Redmond, C Byrne. Substitutes: D Codd for Byrne-Dunbar (43), T Kinsella for O’Hagan (inj. 43), JJ Twamley for Carley (51), J Shiel for Browne (56), L Cassin for Kavanagh (56).
Ref – C. Mooney (Dublin)
https://www.independent.ie/sport/gaelic-games/hurling/supersub-jack-doyle-seals-u-20-leinster-title-for-kilkenny-41632505.html Supersub Jack Doyle seals Kilkenny’s U-20 Leinster title