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Battling to stay in Oscar Traynor title contention

After a month of inactivity due to frost, the Clare soccer squad travel to Galway on Thursday evening for a tie they must win to have any chance of staying in the race for the Oscar Traynor, inter-league title.Beaten finalists last year, Clare went into this year’s title race with high hopes of going all the way and bringing the title back to the county for only the second time. They met a strong and well-balanced Limerick side in the opening round and ended up on the wrong side of a 3-1 result.This evening’s game with Galway was originally scheduled for the beginning of December but the inclement weather conditions led to a cancellationClare will be looking to goalkeeper, John Healy, David Russell, Damian O’Rourke and goalscorer in the opening round, Stephen Hickey to lead the way against Galway who will carry the favourites tag into the game Tournament rescheduledAs the pitches in Lisdoonvarna were frozen last weekend, the organisers …

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Joe Cooney joins the top table

JOE Cooney from O’Callaghan’s Mills is the new vice-chairman of Clare GAA. In a three-way contest for the post, he emerged victorious on the second count.Chairman of his club for the past four years, he stepped down from that position at the recent annual meeting of the club. He defeated PJ McGuane (Cooraclare) and Oliver Hanrahan (Éire Óg) for the position.After the first vote, Cooney and McGuane were level with 69 votes each. Hanrahan, who received 22 votes, was eliminated and delegates were then asked to vote for Cooney or McGuane. The second vote saw Cooney, a Fine Gael councillor, emerge victorious on a count of 80 votes to 75.Thanking the delegates, Cooney said he was “a committed GAA man” all of his life.PJ McGuane told the meeting he was a dedicated club and parish man. He said, “There were no recriminations or rancour and I hope this is the way forward.”“We have a generation of young married couples who …

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Punters hopeful over weather for festival programmes

The weather forecast is likely to be the main topic of conversation among racing fans in the build-up to Christmas, with hopes that the present cold snap, which has decimated racing on both sides of the Irish Sea of late, relents in time for the high-profile racing festival programme to go ahead. Met Éireann are predicting a thaw to arrive on Christmas Eve and it is very much a case of fingers crossed that the forecasters are correct, as all is set for the busiest week of racing is this country.   Limerick’s four-day Christmas racing festival has long been a mecca for punters in the Mid-West and this year’s programme looks bigger and better than ever. Course manager Russell Ferris and his team have been working overtime to get this meeting on and speaking to The Clare Champion on Monday, Ferris was optimistic that the fixture would get the green light. “We have been very lucky here that we didn’t …

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Brady on form in comeback bout

ENNIS boxer Lee Brady made a welcome comeback to ring action in the finals of the Munster Leagues in a frost-bound Ennis last Sunday.It was Brady’s first action of the new season, having been sidelined with injury since September and he was anxious to return to the winners’ rostrum against Limerick’s Callum Ryan (St Francis). He ticked all the right boxes in this one and emerged victorious on all three judges’ scorecards in a pulsating three rounds of action in the 67kg class.He conceded height and reach to the rangy Limerick fighter but was always busy and kept Ryan on the back foot, scoring with left and right hooks for a comprehensive victory.Brothers John and Simon McDonagh, who were unbeaten in their previous respective outings, almost made it 100% success ratings in the leagues but a rather harsh decision deprived Simon in his battle with Chester O’Mara from Clonmel. He will rue the absence of the computer scoring and, in …

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Big win for Clare athletes at Nenagh

The Munster Masters Indoor Championships plus the juvenile multi-events for U-12 to U-18 were held at the Nenagh Indoor Arena. Clare athletes gave outstanding performances when taking nine gold medals, nine silver medals and three bronze medals.Richard McArthur, in the O-45 category, came away with five gold medals. After winning the 60m, he followed with gold in the long jump and high jump, and later on that afternoon he won gold in the 200m and added a gold in the 56lbs without follow.David Courtney, Ennis Track, competing in the O-45 section came away with the gold medal in the shot putt and he added silver in the long jump and 56lbs for distance and a bronze medal in the high jump.In the masters O-40 Tommy Greene, St John’s, came away with gold in the shot putt (10.49m) and he also captured the 56lbs for distance. He won a silver medal in the long jump and a bronze medal in the …

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Clubs receive grant aid from council

At a function in the Temple Gate Hotel on Monday night, Munster Council distributed development grants to clubs for work on pitch and dressing room developments.Over the three years (2007-2009) Munster GAA has distributed € 5,600,000 to clubs across the province. This money has, in the main, been generated from gate receipts. Central Council has contributed €2,381,805 to club physical development grants over the same period. In 2010, Munster GAA distributed €1,608,149 to club and county physical development projects.In addition to the expenditure in relation to physical development, Munster GAA has also provided other financial support in 2010 to counties, with a total of €480,752 paid out to Clare. Team expenses and field rent amounted to €67,853; €121,602 was for coaching with €58,790 for projects. The biggest figure, €232,507, went to physical development in a selection of clubs.The Clare clubs to benefit are: Ballyea (€16,000); Broadford (€11,305); Kilrush (€16,000); Moy (€1,689); O’Curry’s (€9.965); St Joseph’s Doora-Barefield (€32,085); Sixmilebridge (€21,379); Banner …

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