KILKENNY PREVENTED ANTRIM from pulling off another shock win in Division 1 of the Allianz Hurling League, as they pulled away in the final stages to secure a 1-28 to 3-15 win.
Antrim, who stunned Clare last weekend, were level with the Cats in the 43rd minute after two second-half goals from Conal Cunning and Ciaran Clarke.
Kilkenny began tagging on crucial scores to put some distance between the sides, but were forced to withstand a second fightback from the Saffrons after conceding a third goal courtesy of Neil McManus in the 63 minute.
That left the scoreline reading 1-23 to 3-13 to set-up a nervy finish at Nowlan Park.
But Brian Cody’s side weathered the storm as Alan Murphy and Conor Browne were among the scorers that helped register a seven-point win for the hosts.
Elsewhere, Waterford were also made to sweat for their 1-22 to 1-19 victory against Westmeath.
The Déise were leading by eight points on 50 minutes, with Mikey Kearney chipping in with a first-half goal.
But Westmeath gradually reduced the deficit as Killian Doyle and Davy Glennon both posted vital points before Doyle struck for a goal after 64 minutes that left just two points between the sides.
There were red cards for both teams in the second half. Waterford’s Jack Fagan was dismissed with two yellow cards in the 41st minute before Westmeath lost Cormac Boyle to a sending off after the hour mark.
Waterford sub Darragh Lyons was also sent to the line in the final stages.
It was Waterford who edged out this dramatic affair in the end, as Kevin Moran, Kieran Bennett split the posts late on to secure a three-point win.
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Division 1 Group B: Kilkenny 1-28 Antrim 3-15
Division 1 Group A: Waterford 1-22 Westmeath 1-19
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