Hurlers on the ditch have less matches to go these days but more time on their hands and as such we’re trying to maximise this by getting you to select Clare’s Greatest Hurling team from 1990 to 2020.
The Clare Echo has teamed up with Haven Pharmacy to get our readers to pick their greatest county senior hurling team from 1990 to 2020.
Forty five players have been nominated to line out on Clare’s greatest hurling team from 1990 to 2020. Players from each era who are deemed to have stood out at senior level have made the shortlist and every day one line of the field will be put forward for selection.
Of course, there will be some omissions that may cause annoyance. Readers will also have the option to select ‘An Othair’ and list who they feel should get the nod where a player has not received a nomination for their particular position. An individual must have played in either the Munster or All-Ireland championship at senior level to be included.
Competition is expected to be fierce with representatives from the All-Ireland winning sides of 1995, 1997 and 2013 vying for inclusion alongside players from the Munster championship victors from 1995, 1997 and 1998 plus the beaten All-Ireland finalists of 2002 and defeated provincial finalists of 1994, 1999, 2008, 2017 and 2018.
Voting will be open until close of business on Tuesday April 7th for each position and The Clare Echo will announce the chosen fifteen on Wednesday. Votes are limited to one per IP address.
The Clare Echo’s selection committee was comprised of sportswriter Seamus Hayes, Sales Executive Niall O’Connor and Head of Sport Páraic McMahon.
Our voting begins by determining who will line out between the posts.
Widely considered as one of the greatest goalkeepers of his generation, Davy Fitzgerald’s nomination is no surprise. A three-time All Star, the Sixmilebridge man made his senior championship debut in 1990 and stayed there until 2007. He is the holder of two All-Ireland medals and has gone on to manage Waterford, Clare and now Wexford at senior level.
Best known for going toe to toe with Anthony Nash in Croke Park in 2013, Pa Kelly is one of two All-Ireland winning goalkeepers shortlisted. The Inagh/Kilnamona netminder was first added to the senior panel by Mike McNamara in 2008 but did not make his championship debut until 2012 when Fitzgerald was in charge. He kept hold of the number one jersey the year after when Clare became All-Ireland champions. Game time was hard to come by for Kelly when Donal Moloney and Gerry O’Connor succeeded Fitzgerald as manager prompting his inter-county retirement in 2018.
Crusheen’s Donal Tuohy completes the lineup. He succeeded Phillip Brennan as first choice custodian during Ger ‘Sparrow’ O’Loughlin’s tenure in charge of the Banner County. Sub-goalkeeper in 2013, Tuts has regained the number one jersey in recent years becoming the preferred option of Donal Moloney and Gerry O’Connor since they took charge for the 2017 season. He is currently part of Brian Lohan’s panel and is one of two goalkeepers in the squad, alongside Eibhear Quilligan.
Thursday saw the first votes for the full-back line.
Two-time All-Ireland winner, Michael O’Halloran of Sixmilebridge is included. He made his senior debut in 1994 and made his final appearance during the 1999 national league. Post playing, he has been heavily involved in the underage setup with his club.
An unused substitute in both 1995 and 1997, Brian Quinn took on the mantle from Michael O’Halloran at number two beginning in 1998. A year later, he lined out for the Munster Railway Cup team. Quinn was corner back on the Clare side that lost to a Henry Shefflin and DJ Carey inspired Kilkenny in the 2002 All-Ireland. He announced his inter-county retirement after their All-Ireland semi-final loss to Cork in 2005.
Scorer of the infamous equaliser in the 2013 drawn All-Ireland final, Domhnall O’Donovan’s name will forever be itched in the folklore of Clare hurling. The twin from Clonlara was part of the first Clare team to win the Munster and All-Ireland U21 championship but is best known for splitting the posts after receiving a handpass from Nicky O’Connell to give the Banner a second chance in 2013. Work commitments prompted his departure from the panel in February 2016, six years after making his senior debut.
For the full-back spot, Brian Lohan faces off with David McInerney and Cian Dillon.
Lohan made his senior championship debut in 1993. Although his first appearance at senior level was at corner back, his exploits while wearing the number three jersey made him a fan favourite. His red helmet is iconic while Brian four All Stars during his career. Captain of the 2002 side, he is the holder of two All-Irelands and three Munster medals.
David McInerney is the second Tulla nominee to make the shortlist. An All Star and All-Ireland winner in his first season as a Clare senior, McInerney has also represented his country in the Shinty. He is the only present member of the senior squad nominated for a position in the full-back line.
National League winning captain of 2016, Cian Dillon was a member of the county senior panel from 2010 until 2018. The Crusheen defender tasted All-Ireland success at U21 level before helping the seniors do likewise in 2013.
Three players from different eras are nominated to fill the left corner back berth.
Ruan’s John Moroney who made his championship debut in the mid eighties lined out with the seniors until his tragic and untimely death in December 1993. A one-time All Star nominee, Moroney featured in several positions in the Banner defence and was highly respected by teammates and opponents.
Frank Lohan like his older brother Brian won two All-Ireland medals but also had the distinction of captaining his county. Following Brian’s retirement, Frank transitioned to full-back. An All Star winner in 1999, Frank retired in 2008 with the highest amount of appearances of an outfield player.
Completing the list of nominations in the full-back line is Gerry O’Grady. He made his debut in 2003 in what was Cyril Lyons’ final year in charge and remained part of the senior panel until 2010 when an ankle injury influenced his decision to call it a day at county level.