*Ken Ralph congratulates Peter Duggan. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill

CLARE’s character came to the fore in bouncing back to record their first win of this year’s Munster championship, selector Ken Ralph maintained.

Speaking shortly after the final whistle in SuperValu Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Sunday, the selector outlined, “Giving Cork a six or seven lead on their home patch doesn’t look great but, in fairness, you have to give great credit to the lads. They just knuckled down, took their points and got the goal and got back into it and got on top. You have to take your hat off to them, they were excellent in the second half”.

Wearing a big smile he said, “my heart, we didn’t come out as we wanted after half time and they went seven up. Cork really threw down the gauntlet to the boys. After what happened last week this could have gone either way but the character is there in this group and it came through. We were under savage pressure but you have to admire the lads”.

Ralph referred to the switches made by management as having a big bearing in bringing certain players like David Reidy into the contest. “We made a couple of little switches and the move of David Reidy certainly worked, I thought he was excellent, especially in the second half. We were afraid to move Peter (Duggan), he was so good and he brought other lads into the game. As for (Shane) O’Donnell, once he gets a sniff of it, he is always dangerous, Mark Rodgers got some great scores. We are delighted with the lads that came on, Conor Leen settled things down, Shanners (Aron Shanagher) got a great go and he deserved it, he has been training awful hard”.

A three week break until they welcome Waterford to Cusack Park is ahead of Clare. The Tipperary native who has become heavily involved with Clarecastle noted, “every game is a huge game and everyone is capable of beating anyone, you would think after last Sunday, the way people were talking, we were gone. We are great again this Sunday and that could change again with the Waterford game. Munster is a dog fight”.

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Subscribe for just €3 per month

If you’re here, you care about County Clare. So do we. Did you rely on us for Covid-19 updates, follow our election coverage, or visit The Clare Echo every week for breaking news and sport? The Clare Echo invests in local journalism and we want to safeguard its future in our county. By becoming a subscriber you are supporting what we do, will receive access to all our premium articles and a better experience, while helping us improve our offering to you. Subscribe to clareecho.ie and get the first six months for just €3 a month (less than 75c per week), and thereafter €8 per month. Cancel anytime, limited time offer. T&Cs Apply. www.clareecho.ie.

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