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International call-up for Brennan, McInerney and Kelly

Clare senior football captain, Gary Brennan, will become just the fourth man from the county to represent Ireland in the International Rules series, when he lines out against Australia in Croke Park on Saturday week. The Clondegad clubman, who teaches at St Flannan’s College in Ennis, has been selected on Joe Kernan’s 23-man panel for the one-off test. Kilkee’s Noel Roche was the first Clare man to represent Ireland in the series in the 1980s, while Martin Daly (1998) and Odran O’Dwyer (2003) have also represented the country. Speaking to The Clare Champion on Wednesday, Gary Brennan said he has been helped by many people in his development as a footballer. “I’m delighted but I’m very conscious I wouldn’t be in this position only for my family, all of my football and hurling club mates and my county team mates. “This comes from training all year with the county, playing at a particular standard and being fortunate enough to go …

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Wolfe Tones qualify for Munster final

Wolfe Tones 1-12 Bruree, Limerick 0-11 Wolfe Tones from Shannon will play Newcestown from Cork in the final of the Munster intermediate club hurling championship in two weeks time. At Kilmallock earlier today (Sunday), the Clare champions proved too strong for their Limerick counterparts, Bruree and emerged with a four point victory, 1-12 to 0-11. The game’s only goal came nine minutes into the second half and it proved to be a crucial score, Rory Hayes getting the final touch after the experienced Brian O’Connell had created the opportunity. After playing with the aid of the wind, the Shannon club led by five points, 0-9 to 0-4, at half time. Bruree had the first two points of the second half but then the visitors struck for an Aron Shanagher point followed by goal from Hayes. Bruree piled on the pressure and outscored their opponents, 0-5 to 0-1 in the next twenty minutes to trail by a goal with the full …

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Podge targeting a spring comeback

CLARE dual player Podge Collins is targeting a return to the football and hurling fields in March or April 2016. The former hurling All-Star snapped his anterior cruciate ligament in late May, playing in a club championship game for Cratloe against Ballyea in Cusack Park. He underwent surgery on July 7 and has since embarked on an intensive recovery programme. Collins subsequently missed the remainder of 2015 with both club and county. “I had it tested last Monday week in Santry. It was to test the power in the knee and they were very happy with how everything went. I’ve been put on a new programme for the next few weeks. Seán O’Meara (physiotherapist) is working very closely with me and it’s great to have him back from Australia. He’s doing great work with me. Everything is positive and I’ve had no setback so far and, hopefully, it’ll keep going in that direction,” Collins told The Clare Champion this week. …

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Honorary Doctorate for Paul O’Connell

The University of Limerick will this afternoon award an Honorary Doctor of Science to former Ireland rugby captain Paul O’Connell. Dr Paul O’Connell will be the 100th recipient of an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Limerick since 1990. Dr Paul O’Connell has a long association with the University of Limerick from his days training in the original PESS swimming pool as a secondary school student, to the years he spent studying computer engineering at UL. He has been a director of the UL Foundation since 2011. In that role in 2012, he gave generously of his time to front the Paul O’Connell Golf Outing, which raised in excess of €50,000 to fund scholarships for students participating in UL’s Access Programme. The scholarships enabled six students from socio-economically disadvantaged areas of Limerick to study degree programmes at the University. Speaking about Paul O’Connell’s Honorary Doctorate UL President Professor Don Barry said, “The awarding of a University of Limerick Honorary Doctorate …

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Sixmilebridge complete senior double

Sixmilebridge 0-18 Crusheen 1-13 A memorable year for Sixmilebridge senior hurlers concluded at Shannon on a sunny November afternoon with victory over Crusheen in the Clare Champion cup, senior hurling league, final. The merited win saw the Bridge complete the senior double as they had earlier won the championship title (Canon Hamilton trophy) while the win also saw the side go through the domestic season without suffering a defeat. They concluded their memorable season in front of new Clare senior hurling coach Donal Og Cusack who attended the game in the company of team manager Davy Fitzgerald from Sixmilebridge. [doptg id=”84″] This was the third meeting of these sides in competitive action this season and the Bridge emerged victorious on all occasions. In bright sunny conditions Sixmilebridge took an early lead with points from Niall Gilligan and Jamie Shanahan before Pat Vaughan opened Crusheen’s account in the third minute. A minute later Crusheen pounced when Derek Fahy’s attempted short puckout …

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Donal Og Cusack joins Clare backroom team

Donal Og Cusack from Cork is the new coach to the Clare senior hurling team. In a statement issued this Bank holiday Monday, the former Cork custodian has been named as coach selector in Davy Fitzgerald’s management team for 2016. A winner of minor, under 21 and three All-Ireland senior medals, five Munster senior medals and two All-Star awards as goalkeeper the Cloyne man has been a member of the RTE Sunday Game panel for the past two seasons. During the Cork senior hurlers strike action a few season’s back, Cusack was one of the chief spokesmen for the players Another new member of the backroom team is Jimmy Payne from Waterford who is to be a strength and conditioning coach along with Kelvin Harold who is employed full time by Clare GAA. He worked with Fitzgerald during the Sixmilebridge man’s tenure as Waterford senior hurling team manager. He has also held the role of Strength and Conditioning Coach with …

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‘Bridge bow out of Munster title race

Na Piarsaigh, Limerick 3-11 Sixmilebridge 1-15 Sixmilebridge’s dream of progressing to the latter stages of the Munster senior club hurling championship were shattered at their own O’Garney park this Sunday afternoon. Despite being ahead by nine points at half time, the Clare champions suffered their first competitive defeat of the season when going under to their Shannonside neighbours. Playing with the aid of a strong wind in the first half, the home side built up a nine point lead, 1-12 to 1-3 by half time but they struggled throughout the second half. A haul of 1-6 in a nine minute spell at the start of the second quarter saw the Clare champions build up a good lead. The goal scorer was Cathal Malone who was put through by Shane Golden. A storming third quarter from Na Piarsaigh proved decisive in this tie. Kevin Downes goaled two minutes after the resumption and he provided the pass from which Peter Casey found …

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Wolfe Tones through to Munster semi-final

Wolfe Tones 4-12 Kilmoyley, Kerry 2-6 Clare champions WolfeTones booked a Munster intermediate hurling championship semi-final date with Bruree from Limerick when they proved too strong for Kerry senior champions, Kilmoyley at Sixmilebridge on Saturday afternoon. The winners dominated throughout Ssturday’s tie and were two goals clear inside the opening ten minutes after Aaron Shanagher and Declan O’Rourke had found the net. Shanagher goaled in the tenth minute and O’Rourke’s major came three minutes later when his strike from 60m slipped through the hand of visiting goalie Aidan McCabe. At half time they were 3-8 to 1-4 ahead, the third goal coming from team captain Aaron Cunningham just before the short whistle. Clare senior panelist Cunningham also scored the fourth goal when he converted a penalty awarded against visiting full back Sean Dowling who earned a straight red card for his tackle on Cunningham. Kilmoyley finished the game with thirteen players after Tom Murnane picked up a second yellow a …

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