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Consistency earns ‘Bridge favourites’ tag

CAN Sixmilebridge continue their unbeaten run and justify favouritism by re-claiming a title they last held just two years ago? Will Clonlara deliver on their undoubted potential and atone for the disappointments of recent years since they made the breakthrough and won the title in 2008 How will Sean Stack’s involvement as Clonlara manager impact on the game? Can Clonlara complete the senior/junior double and capture the Canon Hamilton Trophy to go alongside the Junior A Cup won last week? These are just a few of the questions being raised ahead of Sunday’s Clare Senior Hurling Championship final between Clonlara and Sixmilebridge, which has all the ingredients to be one of the best finals in years. Both clubs were on most people’s shortlist for honours when the draw was made back in March. Winning back the Canon Hamilton Trophy has been foremost in the minds of all involved with Sixmilebridge GAA since the beginning of the 2015 season. Disappointed at …

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€1.65m sports grants for Clare

A total of 25 sports groups and organisations across Clare will benefit from grants ranging from €200,000 to €1,200, announced by Minister of State for Tourism and Sport Michael Ring.  The countywide allocation under the Sports Capital Programme 2015  is €1.65 million. Clare funding recipients include: Clare County Council – Active Ennis Sports and Amenity Park Lees Road (€200,000) Clare Camogie (€180,792) O’Callaghan’s Mills GAA Club (€114,000) Bridge United AFC €110,000 Tulla Athletic Club €110,000 Lahinch Sportsfield Committee €106,000 Ennistymon GAA Club €106,000 Scariff GAA Park Committee €105,000 Cullaun Sailing Club Ltd €105,000 Clare Co Council – Active Ennis Leisure Complex €100,000 Banner GAA Club Ennis €85,000 Shannon Gaels GAA Club €62,000 Shannon Leisure Centre Ltd €56,000 Corofin GAA Club €50,000 Muintir Na Tire Dysart Branch €40,000 Liscannor Community Sportsfield Co. Ltd €27,000 Crusheen G.A.A. Club €22,548 Eire Og Inis €15,000 Ennis RFC €11,000 Ennis Triathlon Club €10,000 Derg AC €10,000 Ennis Boxing Club €8,000 GoTri Racing Triathlon Club €7,000 …

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Hot Property – the Canon Hamilton Cup

Hot Property is The Clare Champion’s special supplement for the 2015 Clare Senior Hurling Championship Final to be played at Cusack Park, Ennis on Sunday. With previews, analysis and interviews by Sports Editor Seamus Hayes and Peter O’Connell, it sets the scene for one of Clare’s biggest annual sporting occasions. Sixmilebridge, one of the powerhouses of club hurling, meet Clonlara, a team that has grown in strength over the past couple of seasons. Both sides have a wealth of talented players, who play along side each other on Clare teams. With players that have a high skillset, a good sod should make for a thrilling game to showcase the very best of Clare hurling.

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Interesting pairings in u-21 football championship

Eleven teams will do battle for this season’s under 21 A football championship, the winners of which will receive the Marrinan memorial trophy. There will three preliminary round games with the winners going through to join the remaining five in the quarter finals. The title holders are Eire Og and they have secured a bye into the quarter finals where they could face the beaten finalists from last year, Ml. Cusacks/Kilfenora/Liscannor who play St. Breckans in the opening round Nine teams will compete for the B title while there are just four teams in the C competition. Extra time will apply in all games should matches finish level. The details are Under 21 A–Preliminary Rounds;  A–St. Breckans v Ml. Cusacks/Kilfenora/Liscannor; B-Cooraclare v Clondegad; C-Ennistymon v Miltown St. Josephs Quarter Finals; 1–Kilmihil v Cooraclare or Clondegad; 2–Lissycasey v Kilmurry-Ibrickane; 3–Kilrush v Ennistymon or Miltown; 4–St. Breckans or Ml. Cusacks/Kilfenora/Liscannor v Eire Og; Semi-finals;  1 v 3; 4 v 2 Under 21 …

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Kilmurry-Ibrickane make Cusack cup history

In scoring a two point win over Clondegad in the final of the Clare Champion sponsored Cusack cup at Kilmihil on Sunday, Kilmurry-Ibrickane made Clare football history as they became the first club to win the title for the fifth time in succession. For long periods it looked as if they would have to come back another day to decide the outcome before the Kilmurry men managed to edge ahead in extra time to win by two points, 1-16 to 1-14.  They were locked together at 1-12 each at the end of normal time. Clondegad went into the game chasing a first success in this competition, the Clare senior football league, and they certainly made their more experienced opponents fight all the way. It was Kilmurry’s second title in a week as they were crowned senior B champions a week earlier. Clondegad’s juniors contested the division 4 league final on Saturday when they played out a draw with Eire Og. This …

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Tony Kelly Clare’s only All-Star nominee

Tony Kelly is Clare’s sole standard bearer in the nominations for the 2015 All-Star hurling awards . The stylish Ballyea hurler, an U-21 All-Ireland winning captain, was also an influential member of Clare’s 2013 All-Ireland winning team. His exploits that year earned him an All-Star, as well as the Player of the Year and Young Player of the Year accolades, the first time such a double was achieved. All-Ireland champions, Kilkenny and Galway lead the list of nominations with 12 each. Waterford’s strong 2015 showing, which saw them earn league honours before reaching a Munster final and All-Ireland semi-final, sees them land one fewer with a total of 11 nominations. Munster champions, Tipperary claim seven nominations with Cork, Clare and Dublin completing the list of 45 with one each. In all seven counties are represented. On the personal award front, 2015 All-Ireland champions, Kilkenny have received two nominations, with TJ Reid and Richie Hogan, while Tipperary’s Séamus Callanan completes the …

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Cooraclare shock favourites

Cooraclare caused a big shock when they defeated the hot favourites Clondegad in the second of the Clare senior football championship semi-finals, played at Kilmihil on Sunday. First half goals from Rory Donnelly and Tadhg Lillis helped Cooraclare to a four point lead at half time when the score was 2-5 to 0-7. Points were exchanged on a number of occasions in the third quarter before Cooraclare  extended their lead with goals from Thomas Downes and substitute Jack Morrissey. To their credit, Clondegad battled back and goals from Paudge  McMahon and Shane Brennan closed the gap but time wasn’t on their side and when the final whistle sounded, Cooraclare were deservingly ahead and through to play Miltown in the final. The final scoreline was 4-10 to 2-13 The senior hurling final pairing is also confirmed after the weekend when Clonlara sealed their place in the final with a 2-19 to 1-10 win over Kilmaley in their semi-final replay at Cusack …

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Corofin crowned intermediate champions

Beaten finalists twelve months ago, Corofin have bounced back to win the intermediate football title. At sunny Hennessy Park in Miltown on Saturday afternoon, their ability to score goals proved too much for Kilmihil who led by the minimum margin at the mid point. The winners goals came from John Keane (2), Luke O’Loughlin and Damian Ryan and sealed a merited win which has earned them the right to represent Clare in the Provincial championship and they will begin this campaign in November. Meanwhile, Miltown St. Josephs booked their place in this season’s Clare senior football championshio final with a two goal victory over St. Breckans in the first of this year’s semi-finals, played in beautiful conditions at Cusack Park on Saturday afternoon. A superb performance from Eoin Cleary played a key role in the Miltown side’s victory on a day when the Lisdoonvarna outfit made the better start racing into a 0-3 to 0-0 lead after ten minutes. However …

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