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Cork ease to 12 point win over injury hit Clare

Cork 1-20 Clare 1-8 THERE is no masking the reality that Clare were easily put away by Cork in Sunday’s Munster semi-final in Pairc Uí Rínn. However what will frustrate Clare is the fact that they spurned at least three reasonably clear cut goal chances. [doptg id=”74″] Gary Brennan, Keelan Sexton and Dean Ryan all had opportunities to net badly needed goals which, at worst, would have helped Clare to keep it competitive. At this level they found that creating those chances is hard enough and they must be taken to have any chance of making a game of it. Instead Cork romped to a 13 point win and a place in the Munster final while Clare won’t have another game for a month, when they enter the All-Ireland qualifiers. Cork led by six points, 0-10 to 0-4 at half time. Ironically Clare could have goaled after just 14 seconds when Gary Brennan won the throw in and playing a …

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Clonlara march on at second attempt

It was a weekend of mixed emotions for Clarecastle GAA followers. In their eagerly awaited senior hurling championship first round replay with Clonlara, they had to give best to the South Clare outfit at Cusack Park on Saturday. A strong start by Clonlara put down a marker and while the eventual winners experienced some anxious moments in the opening ten minutes of the second half when the magpies rallies, there is no doubting the merit of their win. First half goals from Darach Honan and Micheal O’Loughlin helped Clonlara to a ten point interval lead with the score at 2-9 to 0-5. A strong display by their half back trio of Neil Ryan and Oisin O’Brien on the wings and John Conlon in the centre laid the foundation for this win. An early second half goal from Pakie Healy, back in the side following injury which had kept him out of the drawn game, sparked off a good spell for …

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Ronan putts among the world’s elite

UP-and-coming Ennis golfer Ronan Herbert took a big step forward in his promising golf career when he earned the right to play in the US Kids Golf European Championship, which was decided over a number of historic links in Scotland recently. The nine-year-old did not feature among the winners but was proud to represent his country and Ennis Golf Club and tee off with the world’s best young golfers, aged five to 18. More than 550 of them from 35 nations competed in what is Europe’s premier junior golf tournament. Ronan won his way to Scotland through winning the Irish final of the US Kids event in Portmarnock on April 10 last. On that occasion he shot a level-par round and over the Gullane links in Scotland’s East Lothian, he turned in respectable scores in very difficult weather conditions. Ronan,who plays off a handicap of 16, is a son of Leo and Jana Herbert and a pupil of Scoil Críost …

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Cork manager wary of Clare threat

NOW in his second season managing the Cork senior footballers, Brian Cuthbert insists his charges will not take Clare for granted. However, neither does he think that Cork’s heavy league final defeat to Dublin will weigh on their minds. The Bishopstown club man, who is a primary school principal, says the league final has been long forgotten. “If Sunday’s match was a week after the league final, it might be a factor. But that was seven weeks ago and it’s almost a memory now at this stage. That game would have been put to bed, hopefully, a while back. This is a new competition. We have to go and perform. It’s as simple as that. Certainly I don’t think when it comes to championship, there is a need for beating players with sticks or anything like that,” Cuthbert told The Clare Champion. As a minor, he captained Cork to an All-Ireland title in 1993, scoring a goal in the final. …

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Russell – ‘A lot of progress being made’

ALTHOUGH no longer a member of the inter-county senior football squad, Kilkee’s David Russell continues to play a big role in the development of the game in Clare. Last year he coached Naomh Eoin from the Loop Head peninsula to the Clare Junior Football Championship title and he continues to be in charge of that club as they prepare for this season’s intermediate title race. In addition, he remains a vital player with his beloved St Senan’s, who are challenging strongly to win promotion from Division 3 of the league. Having been a key player in the Clare senior football team for well over a decade, Russell called time on his inter-county career two seasons ago but continues to follow the fortunes of the side and is eagerly looking forward to the team’s clash with Cork. “A lot of progress is being made and keeping Division 3 league status was a massive boost to all, young and old. Getting a …

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Brennan rues the slings and arrows

WHEN a sports person breaks a collarbone, they generally leave it to the professionals to guide them in their recovery. It can get a bit tricky, though, if the sports man nursing a collarbone injury is also a physiotherapist. Clare and Clondegad footballer Shane Brennan earns his living as a physiotherapist. Self-employed at the Clareabbey Primary Health Centre in Clarecastle and working part-time for the HSE, he’s the man to talk to if you break your collarbone. He’s probably not the man to treat you though when he has a broken collarbone himself. “A little bit of knowledge is an awful thing. I would be more aware of certain aches and pains and what they might mean. That leads to me asking a few more questions. I was up with my consultant the other day and I’d say I drove him mad asking questions,” Brennan was honest enough to admit. He broke his right collarbone playing for Clare against Limerick …

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Injury-hit Clare can compete with Cork

IN recent weeks, Clare football supporters have had to brush up on their knowledge of cruciates, dislocations, groins and shoulders, such has been the spate of injuries that have afflicted the county team. Clare were without key players David Tubridy, Shane McGrath and Enda Coughlan for their two-point win over Limerick three weeks ago, while during that game Shane Brennan, brother of team captain Gary, left the field with a collar bone injury, which will sideline him on Sunday. The bulletins have not been great since then either. Podge Collins snapped his cruciate playing club hurling for Cratloe against Ballyea last Saturday week in Cusack Park and his absence leaves a huge void in the Clare attack. If Tubridy, McGrath and Coughlan are still not match fit, the collective injuries leave Clare with significantly depleted options in attack. Kilmihil’s Martin O’Leary, who plays hurling for Ballyea, dislocated his shoulder against Cratloe and is also out this weekend. On the plus …

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Losing his place drove Kelly

CLARE goalkeeper Pa Kelly experienced a mixed 2014. Having played such a key role in Clare’s 2013 All-Ireland success, the Inagh-Kilnamona man, who works as an accountant with Curtin O’Friel & Co in Ennis, lost his place. He insists, though, that he had no issue with the manner of his dropping, although he did subsequently regain his place. “Davy was fair. He made the call. He was pretty honest. Maybe my standards dropped and, in fairness to him, he gave me my chance to get back in. I don’t know whether I took it or not but I have proven since that I probably have. It just goes to show that you can’t let your guard down. If you win an All-Ireland you can’t get complacent. They are the standards he is demanding. He demands that you do the extra stuff and look after yourself. Maybe he thought that I wasn’t doing it but I thought he dealt with it …

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