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GAA News

Ryan hits late winner to send Clare into the Munster SHC final

The Banner edged out Cork after a high-scoring clash in Ennis.

Clare 2-22

Cork 3-18

Páraic McMahon reports from Cusack Park, Ennis

DIARMUID RYAN’s strike on seventy three minutes drove Clare into the Munster senior hurling final and their supporters into delirium after they held off the stern challenge of Cork on Sunday afternoon. 

Facing off with Cork in Cusack Park for only the second time in championship, Clare ensured they maintained a one hundred home record over the Rebels. The ultimate reward is a shot at a first provincial crown at this grade since 1998.

It also means that Clare will have contested provincial finals at minor, U20 and senior in the one season.

A full-house at Cusack Park meant a rip-roaring atmosphere in Ennis, it was evident from the first two scores from Tony Kelly and Ryan Taylor but was abundantly clear at the final whistle when ‘Freed from Desire’ played across the tannoy and the stadium resembled a nightclub.

Though Clare had the better opening start, Cork managed to carve out a four point lead by the end of the first quarter. Conor Cahalane struck for the game’s first goal on eight minutes when Patrick Horgan set him through on goal.

Four points on the trot saw Clare regain the lead with twenty three minutes played and when they raised a green flag from Tony Kelly on twenty eight minutes the wind was firmly in their sails. Rory Hayes burst out of defence with possession, popped to Diarmuid Ryan, he delivered long and high to Peter Duggan who batted down to Kelly and he made no mistake when given the opportunity.

Kelly, Seadna Morey and Diarmuid Ryan closed out the scoring in the first half to see Clare hold a 1-13 1-08 advantage.

Shane O’Donnell continued to cause headaches for Cork, in his first attack on the restart, he was fouled and Johnny Murphy awarded a penalty which was ratcheted to the net by Kelly to see Clare lead by eight.

Cork had a penalty of their own, substitute Shane Kingston was fouled in his first contribution, Patrick Horgan’s effort was saved by Eibhear Quilligan but the rebound from Declan Dalton was not kept out and like that Cork were within four points on forty five minutes.

Horgan goaled twenty eight minutes later to level matters and ensure a nervy, tense finish was on the cards in Ennis. Clare’s response to this goal was immediate with David McInerney and Shane O’Donnell adding quick-fire points.

Crucially Cork never went ahead in the closing stages even though they drew level on a further two occasions. David Fitzgerald put Clare back in front approaching additional time where four minutes were signalled, Horgan again equalised from a free before Diarmuid Ryan struck the all-important winner.

All is not lost for Cork who need a win in their final round against Limerick to have some hope of emerging from the province. They moved the ball well and at pace throughout the game but were second best to the majority of breaking balls and were inferior when it came to the rucks. Seamus Harnedy plus Brian Roche and Darragh Fitzgibbon were most prominent for the Rebels.

Back to back Munster final appearances is the reward for Brian Lohan’s Clare who once again produced a spirited display but one which got great joy from running at their opponents and fine link-up play. They lost full-back Conor Cleary to what appeared to be a serious injury which could likely see him sidelined for the final on June 11th. Leaders were present in abundance for the Banner with Tony Kelly, Shane O’Donnell, Diarmuid Ryan, Peter Duggan and John Conlon setting the way.

Scorers for Clare: Tony Kelly 2-4 (1 pen), Diarmuid Ryan 0-3, Aidan McCarthy 0-3 (2f), David Fitzgerald 0-3, Ryan Taylor 0-2, David McInerney 0-2, Shane O’Donnell 0-2, Seadna Morey 0-1, Mark Rodgers 0-1, Peter Duggan 0-1.

Scorers for Cork: Patrick Horgan 1-9 (6 frees), Declan Dalton 1-1, Conor Cahalane 1-0, Seamus Harnedy 0-2, Brian Roche 0-2, Darragh Fitzgibbon 0-2, Damien Cahalane 0-1, Shane Kingston 0-1.

Clare

1. Eibhear Quilligan (Feakle);

2. Adam Hogan (Feakle), 3. Conor Cleary (St Joseph’s Miltown), 4. Rory Hayes (Wolfe Tones);

5. Diarmuid Ryan (Cratloe), 6. John Conlon (Clonlara), 7. David McInerney (Tulla);

13. Ryan Taylor (Clooney/Quin), 9. Cathal Malone (Sixmilebridge);

8. David Fitzgerald (Inagh/Kilnamona), 11. Tony Kelly (Ballyea), 12. Aidan McCarthy (Inagh/Kilnamona)

14. Shane O’Donnell (Éire Óg), 10. Peter Duggan (Clooney/Quin), 15. Mark Rodgers (Scariff)

Subs:

  • 26. Seadna Morey (Sixmilebridge) for Cleary (34) (inj)
  • 18. Ian Galvin (Clonlara) for Rodgers (46)
  • 20. Aron Shanagher (Wolfe Tones) for McCarthy (53)
  • 19. Shane Meehan (Banner) for Galvin (68)

Cork

1. Patrick Collins (Ballinhassig);

2. Niall O’Leary (Castlelyons), 3. Damien Cahalane (St Finbarr’s), 4. Sean O’Donoghue (Inniscarra);

5. Tommy O’Connell (Midleton), 6. Ciarán Joyce (Castlemartyr), 7. Robert Downey (Glen Rovers);

9. Darragh Fitzgibbon (Charleville), 12. Luke Meade (Newcestown);

10. Declan Dalton (Fr O’Neills), 14. Patrick Horgan (Glen Rovers),
8. Brian Roche (Bride Rovers);

15. Conor Lehane (Midleton), 11. Seamus Harnedy (St Ita’s), 13. Conor Cahalane (St Finbarrs),

Subs:

  • 23. Shane Kingston (Douglas) for Lehane (42)
  • 25. Shane Barrett (Blarney) for C Cahalane (45)
  • 17. Ger Millerick (Fr O’Neills) for O’Connell (46)
  • 19. Tim O’Mahoney (Newtownshandrum) for Meade (61)
  • 26. Brian Hayes (St Finbarr’s) for Dalton (67)

Referee: Johnny Murphy (Limerick)

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