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HURLING: Tipp top after double sucker-punch

Munster Minor Hurling Championship Round 2 Tipperary 2-13 Clare 0-13 WITH the game firmly in the balance, it was Tipperary that snatched the whip hand with a devastating brace of third quarter goals to power into the last four of the Munster Minor Hurling Championship on the hallowed home soil of FBD Semple Stadium on Tuesday evening, reports Eoin Brennan. In a typical seesaw derby which was level on four occasions in a first half that duly ended in a 0-8 to 0-8 stalemate, a goal was always going to be a huge score, not to mention two majors in the space of three minutes that turned the tie firmly on its head. Having arguably failed to demonstrate their superiority on the scoreboard in the opening period, Clare appeared to have made amends when hitting the ground running on the resumption with points through Piaras Ó Sé and Oisin Whelan at 0-10 to 0-8. However, a deft flick from a …

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Great prizes for auction in aid of Ukraine at Clare point to point

ALONGSIDE the excellent racing action at Quakerstown Point to Point on Easter Sunday, a charity auction will have top class prizes up for grabs in support of a great cause. The Co. Clare Hunt meeting on Sunday, April 17, will host the auction in aid of the Irish Red Cross: Ukraine Crisis Appeal to help the organisation further its vital work on the ground in the besieged country. The Co. Clare Hunt is well known for its efforts in raising money for some very worthy causes over the years having most notably raised over €20,000 with the running of the Pat Smullen Legends Race in aid of Cancer Trials Ireland in 2020. Also in the last five years, the Hunt has raised €15,000 in 2019 for Breast Cancer Ireland, and almost €30,000 for Clare Suicide Bereavement Group. Funds raised this year will help the Irish Red Cross continue its work in Ukraine where it is repairing vital infrastructure, supporting health …

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FOOTBALL: Clare Tipp the derby scales with commanding win

Munster Under 20 Football Championship Quarter-Final Clare 3-15 Tipperary 2-5 It’s 26 years since Clare last beat Tipperary at this grade but one would be forgiven for thinking the derby relationship was quite the opposite as the Banner eased into the Munster Under 20 Football Semi-Finals in Hennessy Memorial Park in Miltown Malbay on Monday evening, reports Eoin Brennan. To say it was one-sided was an understatement as Clare could afford to kick 12 wides and still soar 17 points clear by the hour mark. The powerful spine of joint-captains Fionn Kelleher and Eoin Rouine, Cooraclare duo Brian McNamara and Micheál Garry along with Brendy Rouine and the roving Sean McNamara excelled but one could easily add Shane Griffin, Eoin Walsh, Odhran Cunningham and indeed the rest of the collective such was their utter superiority throughout. Granted, the challenge will get infinitely harder next Monday when Kerry roll into town but simply on the merits of this opener alone, it …

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Twin objectives as Clare minor hurlers go into battle

Eoin Brennan previews Clare’s opener in the Munster Minor Hurling Championship against Tipperary in Semple Stadium Thurles tomorrow WITH the championship already underway, the Clare minor hurlers are immediately embroiled in a group decider when making their competitive bow against Tipperary in Semple Stadium on Tuesday evening. With the Banner having a bye while the Premier County edged a compelling opening battle with Waterford on away soil this week, Clare will have to hit the ground running on Tuesday evening to get up to championship speed. However, with former county senior captain Brian O’Connell at the helm along with former senior managers Cyril Lyons and Donal Moloney, Clare aren’t short of experience or leadership from the sidelines as they prepare to enter the championship fray. Even if O’Connell admits that most of that experience isn’t “I’m a complete novice at it but I’ve been involved with this team since Under 15’s,” admits Wolfe Tones clubman O’Connell. “I’m living in Oranmore …

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Injured Clare jockey faces race against time for Punchestown

The vagaries of race-riding were never more clearly illustrated than at Naas recently, where in-form local jockey, Mark McDonagh, picked up a nasty injury in a freak accident. McDonagh went through an unbelievable spell in recent times where his glorious haul included a Cheltenham Festival winner, but he now faces a race against time to be back in the saddle for the start of the high-profile Punchestown Festival on Tuesday, April 26. He told The Clare Champion, “Unfortunately, it looks like I’ve broken my shoulder blade (scapula). It was just a freak accident when my horse (Barnwick) was brought down on the flat in the bumper. “A horse slipped-up in front of us and there was no blame attached to anyone involved. It was just one of those things. A fall on the flat is actually worse than a tumble over jumps. “At least over hurdles or fences you have that second or two to brace yourself for the impact, …

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Clare U20 footballers need to have Tipp-top focus

Eoin Brennan previews Clare’s Munster Under 20 Football Championship Quarter-Final against Tipperary at Hennessy Memorial Park Miltown Malbay this Monday Clare are hoping to open a new chapter when hosting neighbours Tipperary in a winner-takes-all tie in Miltown on Monday evening. You see, while the Banner have contested three of the last five Munster Minor Football deciders, that development gap hasn’t exactly been bridged at Under 20 level where Clare have only beaten Waterford (twice) in their last 12 provincial matches over a decade long span. The capture of the national Liam O’Connor Cup Under 20 competition a month ago against Wicklow has certainly bolstered confidence. However following a shock opening championship defeat to Waterford in 2021, manager Michael Neylon is determined to leave no stone unturned this time around. “The league was very good for the group and great for development but both players and management realise that the championship will be a completely different level of football. “The …

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Adventure sports competition makes East Clare debut

EXHILARATING action and beautiful scenery will be combined in a new sporting competition coming to east Clare next month. The growing sport of Adventure Racing makes its Banner debut on May 7 at the inaugural Lough Derg Adventure Challenge. Billed as the ultimate in outdoor events, teams of two will bike, hike and paddle around scenic Lough Derg with a choice of courses depending on experience. There are two race options within the Lough Derg Adventure Challenge this year. For beginners and first-time team adventure racers, the Sprint race presents a shortened course (3+ hours), where navigation is simplified, with an easy-to-follow map supplied and plenty of support available. You can also use either a road, mountain bike or hybrid in the sprint race. Experienced adventure racers can take part in the Endurance race, which is a little longer (7+ hours) and requires some navigation and map reading skills. Mountain bikes are required for this race. Adventure-racing enthusiast Lorraine Horan …

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Flannan’s footballers fall at final hurdle in Frewen Cup

Michael O’Connor witnessed a powerful show of tackling and shooting from Kerry side Mercy Mounthawk Tralee who defeated the Ennis school 3-11 to 0-7 A POWERFUL show of football tackling and impressive forward play led by Paddy Lane and Odhran Ferris ensured Mercy Mounthawk, Tralee defeated St Flannan’s College in the Frewen Cup. The Munster post Primary schools U16A Frewen Cup final was played in the perfectly appointed Feenagh in Limerick on Friday afternoon. The winners accounted for St Brendan’s, Killarney, in their semi final whilst the Ennis college overcame Croom. 12 of the Ennis school’s starters were going for the Munster double having won the Dean Ryan before Christmas. Flannans played against the strong wind in the first half but were unsettled by the near senior standard tackling offered up by the Kerry side. It forced numerous errors by a diligent Clare school side and closed off any avenue for goal chances throughout the game. Only for the heroics …

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