*Diarmuid Stritch who landed the winning score for Clonlara. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill
CLONLARA made history on Sunday afternoon qualifying for the Munster senior club final for the first time.
Venue: FBD Semple Stadium, Thurles
It was a game that produced many talking points. Kiladangan were reduced to thirteen men in the second half when Dan O’Meara in the 37th minute and Sean Hayes in the 48th minutes were shown straight red cards by referee Ciaran O’Regan from Cork.
The talking points didn’t end there as Diarmuid Stritch fired over what proved to be the winning point just after the public address had announced that he had been replaced by Brian McLeish. However it transpired that this change never took place.
Once again John Conlon played a key role for the winners, contributing 0-4 from play before winning possession in front of his own goal in the final play and clearing the ball to safety as the final whistle sounded.
This was a contest that ebbed and flowed and great credit must go to Kiladangan managed by Sixmilebridge’s John O’Meara for the manner in which they responded when down to thirteen men. They had opened a two point lead as the game went into added time, five minutes being signalled.
The Moriarty brothers Aidan and substitute Cian fired over points to level the tie as the game went into the fifth minute of the additional time.
Diarmuid Stritch fired over the winner for the Clare champions to spark off wild celebrations
Clonlara held a two point lead at the half time break when the score was 0-13 to 1-8 but they would not have been flattered had they been further ahead at this stage.
They played with the aid of the breeze in the opening period and they dominated the exchanges in the first ten minutes but failed to capitalise on two good goal chances.
Ian Galvin had an effort saved by Barry Hogan in the fourth minute while, five minutes later, Colm O’Meara shot narrowly wide after a good run through the middle.
With the midpoint of the half approaching, Clonlara led by four points, 0-6 to 0-2
In the space of a minute the Tipperary champions drew level. Dan O’Meara struck for a goal after receiving a pass from Andy Loughnane who had fielded Billy Seymour’s line ball delivery.
Seymour quickly followed with the equaliser from a 20m free and the sides were level three more times before the Claremen finished strongly to be two points ahead at the break.
Scorers Clonlara: Micheal O’Loughlin 0-9; John Conlon (0-4). Colm O’Meara, Cian Moriarty (0-2 each); Michael Clancy, Paraic O’Loughlin, Aidan Moriarty, Colm Galvin, Diarmuid Stritch, Ian Galvin (0-1) each.
Scorers Kiladangan: Billy Seymour (0-11); Dan O’Meara (1-0), Declan McGrath (0-3); Tadhg Gallagher, Alan Flynn, Paul Flynn, Bryan McLoughney, Sean Hayes (0-1) each
1: Séimi Gully
2: Michael Clancy
3: Ger Powell
4: Logan Ryan
7: Paraic O’Loughlin
6: Dylan McMahon
5: David Fitzgerald
8: Aidan Moriarty
9: Jathan McMahon
12: Colm Galvin
11: John Conlon
10: Colm O’Meara
13: Diarmuid Stritch
14: Ian Galvin
15: Micheál O’Loughlin
17: Cian Moriarty for J. McMahon(42)
20: Micheal Stritch for C. Galvin (51)
21: Daniel Moloney for C. O’Meara (56);
1: Barry Hogan
5: David Sweeney
3: James Quigley
4: Fergal Hayes
15: Willie Connors
6: Joe Gallagher
7: Declan McGrath
8: Tadhg Gallagher
9: Alan Flynn
14: Sean Hayes
11: Billy Seymour
12: Paul Flynn
13: Bryan McLoughney
10: Dan O’Meara
25: Andy Loughnane
22: Eoghan Sharkey for McLoughney (inj) (13)
19: Conor Byrne for E. Sharkey (48)
17: Darren Moran for D. McGrath (64)
Referee: Ciaran O’Regan (Cork)