*Photograph: Gerard O’Neill

The personnel may have altered but Clare’s newest crop of minors proved just as determined to follow in their Munster and All-Ireland winning predecessors footsteps with a commanding opening victory in Cusack Park.

Clare 0-22
Waterford 0-13
Venue: Cusack Park, Ennis

Despite only captain Marc O’Brien, vice-captain Harry Doherty and his fellow Magpie Conor Ralph remaining from last year’s history making squad, it was business as usual for Brian O’Connell’s side as they kept a gamey Waterford at arm’s length for the majority to commence the new campaign on a winning note.

That said, experienced duo O’Brien (8) and Doherty (3) did play major leadership roles up front as the Cratloe man’s frees and Doherty’s aerial superiority accounted for half of Clare’s scoring tally amidst an impressive array of ten different scorers.

There was a real buzz of exictment too about newcomers such as the lively Liam Murphy, classy centre-back James Cullinan, Dara Kennedy, Graham Ball and Matthew Corbett while goalkeeper Matthew Crotty pulled off two superb final quarter saves to quell any late Deise rebellion.

The visitors, led by chief marksman Mark Hartley, did hit the ground sprinting in both halves but failed to turn those early scares into a full blown horror movie for their hosts.

Turning the tide centred around Clare’s dominance on the opposition restarts as the hosts won two-thirds of Waterford’s puck-out to effectively lay siege on their half. It meant that once the Banner hit the front in the eighth minute thanks to a four point unanswered burst, three from O’Brien, they would remain in the ascendency for the remainder of the contest.

With the home side penning them in, Clare capitalised in a blossoming second quarter that saw Harry Doherty and Liam Murphy both grab a brace of points to help their side to a 0-13 to 0-07 interval cushion.

With time to regroup and reshuffle their pack, Waterford returned with renewed vigour as half-time substitute Jack Power and wing-forward Gearoid O’Shea raced to the first three points inside only two minutes of the resumption.

However, the visitors were unable to sustain that blistering pace and if anything only angered Brian O’Connell’s side who responded with six of the next seven points. Graham Ball, Doherty, Darragh McNamara, Dara Kennedy and two more O’Brien frees effeictvely put the game to bed at 0-19 to 0-11 entering the final quarter.

There would be an ineivtable kitchen sink throwing rally but first goalkeeper Crotty kept out a Mark Hartley 20 metre free before surpassing it with a brilliant instinctive save to deny the onrushing Shane Power a minute later.

Substitute Jack Power did tack on two points but they would be matched by O’Brien while replacement Jerry O’Connor also fire over an eye-catching point from the right wing to flesh out the final margin and cement an ideal first defence of their prestigious 2023 crowns.

With a bye to come in Round 2, Clare now have a fortnight to prepare for their last home game against neighbours Limerick in Sixmilebridge whereas Waterford only have seven days to salvage their provincial challenge when hosting impressive first round winners Tipperary in Dungarvan next Tuesday.

Scorers for Clare: Marc O’Brien (0-8, 7f); Harry Doherty (0-3); Liam Murphy (0-2), Graham Ball (0-2), Dara Kennedy (0-2); Matthew Corbett (0-1f), Patrick Finneran (0-1), Darragh McNamara (0-1), Jerry O’Connor (0-1), Rian Mulcahy (0-1f)

Scorers for Waterford: Mark Hartley (0-6, 4f); Jack Power (0-3); Gearoid O’Shea, (0-2); Cormac Spain (0-1), Jamie Shanahan (0-1)

Clare
1: Matthew Crotty (Scariff)

3: Darren Moroney (Éire Óg)
4: Sean McNamara (Clooney-Quin)
5: Sean Óg Kilkenny (Bodyke)

2: Dara Kennedy (Ballyea)
6: James Cullinan (Ruan)
7: Rian Mulcahy (Éire Óg)

8: Graham Ball (St Joseph’s Doora/Barefield)
9: Matthew Corbett (Clooney-Quin)

10: Darragh McNamara (Clooney-Quin)
11: Patrick Finneran (Clooney-Quin)
12: Harry Doherty (Clarecastle)

13: Conor Ralph (Clarecastle)
14: Marc O’Brien (Cratloe) (Captain)
15: Liam Murphy (O’Callaghan’s Mills)

Subs
21: Jerry O’Connor (Clooney-Quin) for Finneran (45)
17: Ryan Hayes (Tulla) for Ball (47)
22: Paul Rodgers (Scariff) for D. McNamara (55)
23: Darragh Ball (St Joseph’s Doora/Barefield) for Ralph (58)
20: Michael Vaughan (Broadford) for Corbett (62)

Waterford
1: Billy Murphy (Tallow)

2: Alex Furlong (Roanmore)
3: Fiachra Cooney (Ballygunner)
4: Jack Twomey (Affane/Cappoquin/Tourin)

5: Tommy Kennedy (Mount Sion)
6: Joe McDonnell (Tallow)
7: Tadgh Corcoran (Mount Sion)

8: Conor Lynch (St Oliver’s)
9: Ollie Fives (Ballygunner)

10: Gearoid O’Brien (St Molleran’s)
11: Shane Power (De La Salle)
12: Jamie Shanahan (Erin’s Own)

15: Mark Hartley (Ballygunner)
14: Ben Cummins (Lismore)
13: Cormac Spain (Ballygunner)

Subs
23: Jack Power (Ballygunner) for Lynch (HT)
17: Conor Power (De La Salle) for Kennedy (36, inj)
20: Caoillin Reville (Roanmore) for Cummins (43)
18: Eoin Burke (Roanmore) for Fives (57)
19: Rory Jacob (Passage) for Spain (59)

Referee: Ciaran O’Donovan (Tipperary)

Related News

séamus horgan pope francis-2
Ennis Monsignor Horgan appointed Papal Nuncio to South Sudan
fursa kavanagh 1
Green Cavanagh puts Shannon Airport rail link at top of agenda
image
Infant Hunter Molloy 'radiated love and lived his life fully'
ennistymon lea debate 1
The Electoral Chair: Ennistymon local electoral area debate
Latest News
ennistymon lea debate 1
The Electoral Chair: Ennistymon local electoral area debate
knappogue castle 1
Knappogue Castle to open as private residence this year
SONY DSC
€8.7m funding approved for Scariff regeneration project
bunratty castle 2
Haugh highlights movie potential of Clare
garda
Woman sustained broken eye socket, broken ribs, collapsed lung, stitches to face from alleged assault by then boyfriend
Premium
clare v tipperary minor 30-04-24 dermot coughlan 1
'We lost it in the first fifteen minutes' - Coughlan on Clare's exit in minor semi-final
ennis courthouse tent 24-02-21 4
Jail warning for mother of three who walks children on daily six mile round school trip
ennistymon v st breckans 07-07-23 liam cotter 1
Cusack Cup champions Ennistymon still unbeaten
leonard cleary 2
Tributes to Corofin's Cleary as he bids farewell to Council
avenue utd v newmarket celtic 12-05-24 team champions 1
Avenue Utd win Premier Division title

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.

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.

Scroll to Top