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Clare look to kick on from Royal Rumble against Rossies

Clare may never have won a championship match in Croke Park but they do have a perfect record against Roscommon after seeing off the Connacht side in a qualifier in Salthill in 2016. Coincidentally, that victory qualified the Banner for their last Croke Park appearance, an All-Ireland Quarter-Final against Kerry that didn’t quite live up to its heightened all-Munster rematch billing. Indeed, throughout their 28 match qualifier record (12 victories and 16 defeats), the biggest scalp Clare have taken over that 22 year span was against Roscommon in that sole clash that saw them comfortably prevail by 2-12 to 1-9. After all, Roscommon were just off the back of contesting the National League Division 1 Semi-Final against Kerry and had only been edged out of provincial honours after a final replay against Galway. Six years on and Clare only possess seven survivors from that memorable day and pitch invasion (Cian O’Dea, Cathal O’Connor, Jamie Malone, Keelan Sexton, Pearse Lillis, David …

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‘By God did we make hard work of it,’ says Clare boss

Clare certainly like to give their supporters value for money. I mean it would have been very boring had the Banner only built upon their seven point first half cushion and running out comprehensive winners with the wind at their backs for the second period. Manager Colm Collins could see also see the humorous side to getting over the line for what was their first ever championship victory over Meath. “We’ve had a bad time with them haven’t we?” quipped the Cratloe clubman immediately afterwards. “I think we played them five times since I’ve got involved and hadn’t won but the last day we played them here in Cusack Park during the league I thought we were a lot closer. So I was optimistic today but by God did we make hard work of it. “Listen, the bottom line is that it’s great to be in the hat on Monday, that’s the most important thing but overall I don’t think …

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Russell – Avenue’s belief was rewarded

Avenue United manager David Russell has lauded his charges for securing the club’s first League and Clare Cup double since 2010. The Clarecastle native credited his side’s commitment and appetite to improve for helping them end Newmarket Celtic’s stranglehold on both competitions. “It’s great. It’s our first double in about 10 years. To do it against Newmarket who’ve dominated Clare soccer for so long makes it better. It’s a great achievement by a great bunch of players there. They put their shoulder to the wheel for the whole season and they got what they deserved.” In what was a demanding campaign for Avenue with runs to the Last 16 of the FAI and Munster Junior Cups, a final appearance in the League Cup and victories in the Banner Carpets and Flooring Clare Cup and Moloney Hardware Premier Division, Russell insists himself nor the players ever felt that any part of the season was a slog. “The lads never baulked at …

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Sporting Ennistymon speak out after refugee and relegation row

Sporting Ennistymon have spoken out on the controversy surrounding the registration of a Ukrainian refugee. The club have published a statement in which they outline their grievances with the process. The controversy arises over the need for the player in question to obtain an International Transfer Clearance (ITC) with the club believing they did not need to obtain one for the player to line out with them. However, they did and due to the confusion, Sporting were docked five points which subsequently meant they needed to play a Promotion/Relegation Play Off. Had they not received the penalty, the club would be guaranteed Premier Division football next season. In the club’s statement, they argue that a lack of information and clarity was provided by the FAI surrounding the rules with regards to registering a Ukrainian refugee. They also contend that the website used to register players, FAInet, is inadequate while also stating their belief that the FIFA rule in relation to …

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Bridge romp to victory over weakened Parish

Under 15A hurling shield final Sixmilebridge 6-22 St Joseph’s Doora-Barefield 1-6 Meeting for yet another occasion this season in various U15 competitions and with a keen rivalry developing the end result of this game played in Sixmilebridge on Wednesday evening was all the more surprising at first glance. Yet delving deeper, the skeleton squad provided by St Joseph’s on the evening was the overriding factor in the result. This should not take in any way from the complete performance displayed by a determined home side who in the Féile had led for a long stretch of the game only to be caught by a late late St Joseph’s rally. Missing players such as Leon Talty, Darragh and Graham Ball to name a few diluted the intensity of the contest from a visitor’s perspective as Dylan Keogh attacked the St Joseph’s goal with single mindedness intent from the throw in. His first two efforts were over the bar before the ultra-accurate …

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First silverware of season for Inagh-Kilnamona with Academy triumph

Under 15 Academy B Final Inagh-Kilnamona 3-11 Scariff-Ogonnelloe 2-10   A powerful final quarter was sufficient for Inagh-Kilnamona to finally shake off the stubborn challenge of Scariff-Ogonnelloe and capture the Under 15 Academy B Hurling honours in Hamilton Park, Kilkishen on Wednesday evening. Despite leading from start to finish, it was never comfortable as only a puck of the ball separated the sides for three-quarters of this entertaining end-to-end decider that produced a whopping 14 goal chances over the hour. With wind advantage favouring Inagh-Kilnamona, they frustratingly found goalkeeper Charlie Collins in superb form as he kept out early attempts from Conn Walshe, Diarmuid De Brun and the lively Tadhg Hassett. Indeed, with Walshe and Hassett also clearing the crossbar with glorious opportunities, Inagh-Kilnamona had much more fortune picking off their points, with the full-forward unit of Hassett (2), Fionn Daffy (2) and Conn Walshe ensuring a 0-5 to 0-2 advantage by the end of the opening quarter. Considering the …

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Sporting Ennistymon relegated from Premier Division

A meeting of the Clare District Soccer League (CDSL) on Tuesday evening decided that Kilrush Rangers have secured promotion to the Premier Division. This means that Sporting Ennistymon have suffered relegation from the top flight of Clare soccer. The sides were due to meet in a Promotion/Relegation Play Off last Sunday morning. However, Sporting Ennistymon refused to play the game as they protested against the Clare District Soccer League (CDSL) rescheduling the game to last Sunday. Sporting Ennistymon said on May 29 they were informed by the CDSL Fixtures Secretary, Brendan Browne, that the play-off match would be held on June 12 but claimed there was interference among the CDSL committee that saw the game pushed back a week. In a lengthy statement published on their social media channels last Sunday, the club argued that they were told at the end of May the game would be taking place on June 12 and not June 5. “On Sunday the 29th …

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Clare footballers set for Rossie rumble in Croker

Clare will face Roscommon in the second round of the All Ireland SFC qualifiers. It will be a second meeting of the sides in 2022, after they played out a 0-9 to 0-9 draw in Division Two of the National League in Hyde Park. The game is set to be played in Croke Park next Saturday with throw-in at 3.45. Colm Collins’ side progressed through to this stage after ending their hoodoo against Meath, when downing the Royals 1-11 to 1-9, as late scores from Keelan Sexton and Manus Doherty edged Clare over the line. Roscommon enter the contest having lost just one game all year between league and Championship, that being a Connacht final reversal against Galway. Anthony Cunningham’s side didn’t hit the levels they expected of themselves in Salthill and will be keen to ensure their year doesn’t end in a whimper. This clash will evoke memories of 2016, as Clare beat Roscommon to seal a quarter final …

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