*Colm Galvin. Photograph: Martin Connolly
Clare’s first championship over Cork since the 2013 All-Ireland final replay wasn’t enough for them to prolong their season with Limerick failing to either draw or beat Tipperary resulting in the Banner’s exit.
Venue: Cusack Park, Ennis
In what was the first championship meeting between Clare and Cork at Cusack Park, the hosts went down fighting with an overdue response to underwhelming displays against Tipperary and Limerick.
From the get-go, Clare made it known that this time they meant business. Not for the first time, Shane O’Donnell escaped from a bunch of Cork defenders and batted past Anthony Nash with the game a mere twenty seconds old. Leaving Certificate student Aidan McCarthy added a point for Clare in their next attack but on their first entry to the goalmout, Cork themselves raised a green flag with Patrick Horgan quickest to react to a Donal Tuohy save as he flicked to the net.
This tense tit for tat nature continue on and off the pitch. Joint manager Gerry O’Connor was sent off by referee Paud O’Dwyer with fourteen minutes on the clock when he pushed Daniel Kearney to the ground following a foul on Cathal Malone. O’Connor wasn’t the only member of their management to be given his marching orders, Liam Cronin who had been a Maor Uisce was dismissed at the end of the contest.
Having maintained the lead for the entire game, Clare buoyed by a superb Tony Kelly top corner finish entered the dressing room at half-time 2-10 1-08 ahead.
Four points on the trot from Cork reduced the deficit to two points inside the first four minutes of the restart. Four Peter Duggan white flags and one from Diarmuid Ryan were sandwiched between two Patrick Horgan placed balls. Further scores from Duggan, Ryan and Colm Galvin were traded with like efforts via Shane Kingston, Horgan and Seamus Harnedy.
Horgan would pick up his second goal of the game on the stroke of sixty five minutes to narrow the gap to a single point. Just as they did at the beginning, Clare finished on a high with five of the final six scores, two of which from the stick of Cathal McInerney who was making his first championship appearance of the year.
Cork’s bid for three Munster titles in a row came unstuck thanks to this defeat. They are still in the championship and must improve defensively if they are to return to the All-Ireland semi-finals. John Meyler withdrew two defenders at half-time, the introduction of Conor Lehane following a first round injury is a big plus for their attack. Darragh Fitzgibbon, Patrick Horgan and Alan Cadogan were best for the Leesiders.
Undoubtedly this was Clare’s best 2019 championship outing in Cusack Park and it had to be. Their faith lay in the hands of neighbours Limerick who could not muster a draw or a win against Tipperary. Clare did their bit by winning but would ultimately pay the price for the defeats to the aforementioned teams with their scoring difference also coming back to bite them.
It is the players and management that will know it more than anyone else, that had they given such a display against Tipperary or Limerick they would still be in the championship. Though they won’t be conducting video analysis sessions this week, the marking and tracking back for Cork’s second goal was abysmal, fortunately for them it didn’t change the result, unfortunately in the end the result did not matter with regard to their progression. Switching Tony Kelly and Peter Duggan worked very well for Clare’s cause, the duo along with Colm Galvin, Shane O’Donnell and Seadna Morey stood out for the winners.
Scorers for Clare: Peter Duggan 0-12 (0-9f), Tony Kelly 1-2, Colm Galvin 0-3, Shane O’Donnell 1-0, Diarmuid Ryan, Cathal McInerney 0-2 each, John Conlon, Aidan McCarthy 0-1 each.
Scorers for Cork: Patrick Horgan 2-9 (0-8f), Alan Cadogan 0-4, Darragh Fitzgibbon 0-2, Daniel Kearney, Seamus Harnedy, Shane Kingston 0-1 each.
1. Donal Tuohy (Crusheen)
2. Patrick O’Connor (Tubber – captain)
6. Jack Browne (Ballyea)
3. David McInerney (Tulla)
5. Cathal Malone (Sixmilebridge)
7. Conor Cleary (St Joseph’s Miltown)
22. Seadna Morey (Sixmilebridge)
17. Jason McCarthy (Inagh-Kilnamona)
9. Colm Galvin (Clonlara)
12. Diarmuid Ryan (Cratloe)
10. Peter Duggan (Clooney-Quinn)
18. Aidan McCarthy (Inagh-Kilnamona)
13. Shane O’Donnell (Éire Óg)
14. John Conlon (Clonlara)
11. Tony Kelly (Ballyea)
21. Ryan Taylor (Clooney-Quin) for Aidan McCarthy (half-time)
4. David Fitzgerald (Inagh-Kilnamona) for O’Connor (54)
24. Aron Shanagher (Wolfe Tones) for Conlon (66)
20. Cathal McInerney (Cratloe) for Ryan (69)
1. Anthony Nash (Kanturk)
2. Seán O’Donoghue (Inniscarra)
3. Eoin Cadogan (Douglas)
4. Niall O’Leary (Castlelyons)
5. Robert Downey (Glen Rovers)
6. Mark Ellis (Millstreet)
7. Mark Coleman (Blarney)
8. Bill Cooper (Youghal)
9. Darragh Fitzgibbon (Charleville)
12. Luke Meade (Newcestown)
11. Séamus Harnedy (St Ita’s – captain)
10. Daniel Kearney (Sarsfields)
13. Alan Cadogan (Douglas)
14. Patrick Horgan (Glen Rovers)
15. Aidan Walsh (Kanturk)
17. Damien Cahalane (St Finbarr’s) for Cadogan (half-time)
18. Stephen McDonnell (Glen Rovers) for Downey (half-time)
23. Shane Kingston (Douglas) for Kearney (46)
24. Conor Lehane (Midleton) for Walsh (52)
25. Declan Dalton (Fr O’Neill’s) for Meade (65)
Referee: Paud O’Dwyer (Carlow)