*David Fitzgerald. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill

CLARE’s hurlers have been spurred on by the feeling of not giving the best account of themselves when losing out in the Munster final to Limerick.

Step one in their attempts to bounce back was achieved with a twelve point win over Wexford in the All-Ireland SHC quarter-final while step two brings them to Croke Park for the first time this year as they face off with Kilkenny in the All-Ireland SHC semi-final for the third year in succession.

Speaking following the Wexford win, wing forward David Fitzgerald highlighted, “there is always room for improvement”.

Referencing the Munster final, the Inagh/Kilnamona clubman stated that Clare had “two weeks to reflect on the Munster final and the most disappointing aspect of that final was our performance. Bar one or two players we were beaten comprehensively across the pitch so it was great to get a second chance and try and rectify a few things”.

Lee Chin’s penalty before half-time in the quarter-final “brought them back into the tie,” he recalled of the Wexford quarter-final. He felt Clare got the breaks in this game, “It didn’t look like that would be the case when Davy Mac (David McInerney) got the black card but when they went down to fourteen it obviously benefitted us. We used the extra player quite well at times, it stood to us”.

David Fitzgerald signs autographs. Photograph: Gerard O’Neil

Aware that there is areas for Clare to build on, Fitzgerald is adamant the inroads must be met if they are to challenge Kilkenny. “We have played them twice in the in the last two years and they have beaten us well on both occasions. We need to up it well in training in the next two weeks and try and bring a performance to the game”.

He concluded, “we won’t be looking past the next day. We know it will be a huge battle, for now we must try and get the bodies right and go at it again. You don’t mind been beaten by a better team but when you don’t perform that’s when it’s disappointing”.

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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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