Jimmy Magee has vivid memories of Clare’s All-Ireland senior hurling success in 1995.
The legendary sport and television personality was in ebullient form when he helped to launch a new website for the 25th annual South-East Clare Show in Tony Horan’s Bar, Bridegtown on Thursday night last.
The legendary Memory Man can still hold an audience’s attention, judging by the response to his trip down memory lane during the launch. Italia ’90 and Clare’s thrilling All-Ireland victories in 1995 and ’97 were some of the key sporting moments he recalled on the night, to the delight of the large attendance.
Speaking to The Clare Champion, Magee noted Clare enjoyed tremendous support from all parts of the country in the run up to the 1995 All-Ireland decider as, “what is seldom is wonderful”.
He remembers the Clare hurling team, led by manager Ger Loughnane, flew up to Dublin from Shannon Airport by plane and back again. He recalled driving out to Dublin Airport to meet the players and Loughnane before the game.
He said the match-winning goal, scored by Eamon Taaffe, was unusual. “Eamon Taaffe scored the crucial goal, but he wasn’t on the starting team, wasn’t mentioned in the match programme and didn’t finish on the team, as he was taken off again just before the end.
“This is most unusual, if not unique. I remember the Clare after-match celebrations, the great Clare Shout and selector Tony Considine singing My Lovely Rose of Clare.
“Clare had a very good team. Their defence and midfield, with the likes of Ollie Baker, was very solid. Up front, Clare had players like Jamesie O’Connor, PJ O’Connell and Ger O’Loughlin, who could get scores. I was covering the game and homecoming for UTV and I went back down with the team to Shannon Airport,” he recalled.
South-East Clare Show has chosen Milford Care Centre as its partner charity this year. Sr Phyllis Donlon spoke of the gratitude on behalf of Milford Centre and was delighted to share some words with the legendary Magee.
Michael Byrne, of Acton BV, gave people a sneak peek of the new website, which includes photographs of show years gone by, on www.southeastclareshow.com.
Plenty of photo opportunities, sporting questions and the chance to be the first to view the new website concluded a successful evening.
The show committee will announce its official launch date later this month, in advance of its 25th annual show on Sunday, July 26.