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Cusack Park to close for eight months

UPGRADING works at Cusack Park in Ennis will begin on June 15, Clare GAA secretary Pat Fitzgerald has confirmed “The contractor wants the site handed over in total. It’s an eight-month contract and the work must be completed by the end of the eight months,” Fitzgerald explained at a meeting of the GAA county board. “There are other issues with the Cloister side. We went for planning and there are fairly significant costs involved with preparation, much more than €20,000, €30,000 or €40,000. More information was sought and the cost of preparing that won’t be far off €20,000,” he continued. “Decisions have to be made,” the secretary went on adding, “We would have anticipated that we may be able to use the venue. If we don’t hand it over, the eight months may be much more, maybe 10, 11 or 12 months. The contractor has to be told”. Responding to a query from Clonlara chairman, Flan Mullane, as to where …

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Ó Sé immortalised by Kilbaha sculptor

WHEN Kilbaha sculptor Seamus Connolly was commissioned to create a larger-than-lifesize bronze statue of legendary Kerry footballer, Páidí Ó Sé, he immersed himself in the life of the West Kerry man, who died suddenly in December 2012. Eight months of patient, creative toil carried out at his forge in Kilbaha was revealed in Ventry recently , when a huge crowd gathered for the unveiling of the statue. Another former Clare manager, Mick O’Dwyer, who has a statue of his own standing in Waterville, helped to officiate, along with Páidí’s son, Pádraig Óg. Prior to hauling his life-like depiction of Páidí to West Kerry from West Clare, Seamus was visited by the committee who commissioned him. “I’d already had an indication that the committee were very happy because they had seen it in the clay. I work with a certain amount of direction but after that, it’s up to me. Just before we make the moulds, when it would still be feasible to …

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Limerick end Clare’s Munster championship campaign

  Limerick 1-19 Clare 2-15 It was said on many occasions in the lead up to this game that it would be close and that it would produce many talking points,. It certainly did. In modern times Limerick and Clare have never failed to provide plenty of entertainment when they have clashed on the hurling field and particularly when those meetings are at championship time. The latest clash ended in a one point loss for Clare. That they had chances to have at least earned a draw is without question but, in the end, time ran out and Limerick emerged with a one point victory and a semi-final date with Tipperary in mid June. [doptg id=”70″] It was fast and furious from the outset and Limerick and Limerick had t wo points on the board before Colin Ryan opened Clare’s account in the sixth minute. They were level at 0-3 each by the tenth minute but three points in two …

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Footballers book place in Munster semi-final

Clare 0-15 Limerick 0-13 ALTHOUGH not as fluid in the second half, during which they lost their shape at times, Clare showed that when it mattered they had enough to get over Limerick and qualify for a Munster semi-final with Cork in Pairc Uí Rínn on June 14. The impact from the bench was key to Clare’s second successive championship win over Limerick. Rory Donnelly and Cathal McInerney put over two points each with the latter scoring Clare’s final points, which secured the result. [doptg id=”69″] In fact all of Clare’s substitutes made an impact with Davy O’Halloran getting on plenty of ball at centre forward, although he did kick one wild wide. While Keelan Sexton was only on the field for a couple of minutes, he found McInerney with a superb cross field pass for Clare’s last score. Inspired by Gary Brennan in the opening half, Clare led 0-9 to 0-4 at half time. The Clare captain scored the …

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Munster hurling championship fact file

Key fact for Sunday’s big Munster senior hurling championship meeting o Clare and Limerick in Semple Stadium, Thurles. – Cork’s Colm Lyons will referee Sunday’s game, which throws-in at 4pm; – Clare defender David McInerney, from Tulla, captained UL to the Fitzgibbon Cup title this year, a team that Clare’s Brian Lohan managed; – Clare defender Jack Browne from Ballyea is a nephew of former Limerick great, Jimmy Carroll; – Limerick defender Wayne McNamara, from Adare, has strong Clare connections as his mother, Vera Killoughery, hails from Ballyea; – Limerick defender Seamus Hickey played hurling and football for St Flannan’s College; – Clare player Brendan Bugler is a member of the teaching staff at Doon CBS; – Banner county sharpshooter Colin Ryan helped coach Salesian College, Pallaskenry to Munster colleges success last year. Ballyea’s Brian Chambers was also a member of the Limerick school’s backroom team; – Former Clare player and county coach, Alan Cunningham, from Wolfe Tones, is currently …

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Loughnane adamant that Clare need Podge

DOUBLE All-Ireland winning manager Ger Loughnane is adamant that it’s not too late for Podge Collins to play hurling for Clare before the end of the 2015 campaign. The Sunday Game analyst says that people he meets outside of Clare are “flabbergasted” that the 2013 All-Star and hurler of the year nominee isn’t hurling for the county this year. Collins, who is on the county football team, is available and willing to play hurling for Clare but hurling manager, Davy Fitzgerald has ruled out players fulfilling a dual role. Loughnane also told The Clare Champion that this Clare team must win a second All-Ireland to dispel the belief that they are on the slide and to salvage their “long-term reputations”. Clare didn’t win a championship match in 2014 and were relegated to Division 1B earlier this year, having won just one game from six. Loughnane also bemoaned the absence of Colm Galvin, who has emigrated to the US and believes …

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Banner are ‘raring to go’

THE recently concluded national hurling league didn’t go too well for Clare but, that said, they could have qualified for the knock-out stage of the competition. That’s all in the past now and all involved are just looking forward to what is ahead. A key member of team, John Conlon acknowledges there are “big expectations in Limerick” but added, “we have big expectations ourselves”. “We let ourselves down last year, which is a worry. We can’t dwell on the past. Yes we had a great win over Dublin. We lost narrowly to Kilkenny, a game we could have won and we don’t like moral victories. All we need now is to ensure we get over the line on Sunday,” the Clonlara man told The Clare Champion “We can’t afford to look past Limerick and that’s the way we have approached things this year, taking it a game at a time. Right now, we are looking at Limerick and looking at …

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Footballers face an obstinate obstacle

LEST any Clare supporter be unaware of the task facing the county footballers in Ennis on Saturday evening, consider that the last time the counties met in the Munster championship, Limerick won by four points, 1-13 to 1-9. That was in 2009 and while Clare did beat Limerick in the Munster semi-final at the Gaelic Grounds three years ago, Clare hadn’t beaten their neighbours since June 3, 1984 prior to 2009. This weekend’s game will be the 38th Munster championship meeting between the counties, with Clare winning 22 of those fixtures. Incredibly, Limerick won just a single championship game between the counties from 1909 to 1980, when they met 19 times. Five of their 37 Munster meetings have finished level. In the here and now, the current teams met on the last Sunday of March in round six of the NFL. Limerick had to win to have a chance of retaining their Division 3 status and they did just that. …

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