By Seamus Hayes
Whitegate will be playing senior hurling in 2014 after their three point win over Feakle in the intermediate hurling championship final played at Sixmilebridge on Saturday.
The win ended a four year wait to return to the senior ranks for the East Clare side captained by Clare’s All-Ireland winning star, Brendan Bugler.
Ahead by a point at half time, 0-7 to 0-6, Whitegate found themselves a point behind two minutes into the new half after Oisin Donnellan had goaled for Feakle. There was a strong response from Whitegate and Ian Fahy hit 1-1 in the space of a minute to give his team a lead they would hold to the finish.
They have little time to celebrate, however, as they return to Sixmilebridge on this Sunday to face Cork champions Youghal in the Munster intermediate championship semi-final.
Sixmilebridge reach senior final
Sixmilebridge qualified for the Clare senior final when they accounted for Clonlara in the first of this season’s semi-finals at Cusack Park on Saturday. The pitch cut up badly during the course of this tie, making matters difficult for the players.
The winners hit 1-1 in injury time at the end of the first half and these scores played a key part in their victory. They led by a point at half time after playing against the breeze and while Clonlara had the first three scores of the second half, they were always fighting an uphill battle against a Sixmilebridge side that showed the greater hunger for victory.
Meanwhile, Clarecastle will be playing senior hurling in 2014 after they scored a four point win, 0-14 to 0-10, over St. Josephs in this relegation play off on Saturday. The game was played in Clarecastle after the magpies won a toss for venue.