*Daniel Treacy and Mikey O’Shea battle for possession. Photograph: Gary Collins

AN EAST CLARE bloodbath is on the cards for the relegation play-offs in the Clare SHC.

Scariff, Whitegate and Smith O’Briens will be contesting the dreaded relegation battle with the final spot to be filled by the losers of Broadford versus Clarecastle.

Should Broadford lose to the Magpies it will mean the intermediate winners of 2019, 2020 and 2021 are all embroiled in a battle to retain their senior status. Two of the four teams will be relegated from the top tier.

Whitegate have to face Feakle in the final round before they focus fully on survival, manager Terence Fahy outlined. “We’ve a match in two weeks time to finish out the group, that’s where our focus will be, try and get a few bodies back for it and see what way bodies are for it, we’ve a championship match in two weeks time that we’ll have to see out our group of five and that is where our focus will be. Of course, we’re in the relegation situation and we’re aware of that and we’ll deal with the fence in front of us”.

Speaking to The Clare Echo following their 3-26 0-20 defeat to Sixmilebridge, the Clare U20 manager said, “We got a fair lesson from Sixmilebridge today, we came down to win the match, they were far better than us and we had no answer to them in the second half, we were in a low spot

Lorcan Fitzpatrick is hooked by Tomás Quirke. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill

at half time and in fairness to our lads they came out and rallied well in the second half, we got a few scores and left a few behind, same as Sixmilebridge, we missed a lot in the second half as did Sixmilebridge and we just came up against a clinical very good Bridge team on the day and we had no answer to them”.

Character of his charges has never been questioned and it wasn’t when they trailed by seventeen points at half-time. “We talk plain and simple, the message was just to be better in the second half and the lads were a little bit better in fairness to them. They didn’t hang their heads and they don’t feel sorry for themselves and they just go back at it. They’re a very good group, they’ve been through a lot and they don’t feel sorry for themselves, that didn’t change at half-time in that match”.

For Smith O’Briens, there was a sense of frustration that they failed to reproduce their battling second round display when they lost by double scores to Crusheen. “We knew coming into today that it was going to be a battle. We are just disappointed that we never got to the level of performance we reached against Inagh/Kilnamona. It was always going to be a tough group with quality sides in it. Credit to Crusheen though who were powerful there today. Their leaders especially Cian Dillon caused us huge problems and let’s be honest about it Cian Dillon has marked some of the best hurlers in the country for years with Clare and all that big game experience showed,” selector Brendan Foley commented.

Keith Stritch clears his lines. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill

Foley predicted the relegation play-offs would be “like a mini East Clare championship and that’ll bring with it its own difficulties as there’s a huge chance it’ll be a derby game to decide our fate”. He added, “They knew how to manage the game and when we shot within reach they’d slow it down and always came up with the next score. We missed chances at crucial stages and we now face into the mother of all battles if we are to retain our senior status”.

Having Cathal Stritch and Mikey Gough back in action is a welcome relief for the Killaloe side. “On the positive side we got hurling into Cathal Stritch and Mikey Gough which is great as we will need everybody in four weeks time. It’ll be a monumental task but we have to regroup and knuckle down. It’s massively important that we stay a senior club and we will give everything we can in order to do so”.

Scariff put up a strong showing in their final round loss to Kilmaley which has them in a positive mood, manager Mark McKenna believed. “We’d have to be very proud of our lads, we are only in place to progress those hurlers and make them better and the club stronger, I think we achieved some of that in a very tough group. We played Division 2 hurling, they won the Clare Cup, we were up against formidable opposition today, we knew that and we knew what it would take and I think our lads stood up marvellously. You’d have to be very proud, our lads will learn from it”.

William Kavanagh. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill

“Killaloe, Whitegate and ourselves are in it, they are intermediate finals in themselves. We said we’d let the boys go away and think about those three matches, go back next weekend and face that challenge. If we come out of that, we will be happy enough,” Mark continued.

Once again the battle of midfielder Eoghan O’Grady who remains in hospital following an accident on a tractor dominated the thoughts of his Scariff teammates. “He has a different fight on his hands, we’re thinking of him, we were hoping we would give him some bit of a lift this evening but maybe he’ll get a lift when he hears the performance was top class. He was listening in on the reports coming in, he was well enough to do that today. This is game of hurling that we love and we play as best we can, results go with you and against you but that is a different fight, we have to be strong with him and help him through it”.

Speaking on Scariff Bay Community Radio following the clash of Kilmaley and Scariff which confirmed that three East Clare sides would be fighting to retain their status, Broadford’s Danny Chaplin quipped that they may follow the example set by Crusheen last season. “They are the big games and the games nobody wants to be in, they are going to be two massive games, if Broadford are in it and I hope for obvious reasons they are not then you will have four East Clare teams. If we could find someone like Pat O’Donnell to fund the excursions in Munster Council”.

Related News

TMP_3810
Relay For Life ‘a very powerful community’ says Clare Rose Aisling
kevin corrigan mary howard samba 1-2
Ennis 2040 DAC Chief & Cllr Howard to start up samba band
eoin gavin 2
'Impact of lack of housing in Shannon is too big to ignore' - Chamber President lays it on the line for Housing Minister
Ennis Car Park Announcement 031 eamon o'dea pat dowling kieran keating deirdre murphy brian fitzpatrick
Lease arrangement with Council for Cloister car park offers 'financial assurance & certainty' for Clare GAA
Latest News
eoin gavin 2
'Impact of lack of housing in Shannon is too big to ignore' - Chamber President lays it on the line for Housing Minister
Ennis Car Park Announcement 031 eamon o'dea pat dowling kieran keating deirdre murphy brian fitzpatrick
Lease arrangement with Council for Cloister car park offers 'financial assurance & certainty' for Clare GAA
uhl exterior
Preliminary assessment underway following death of teenage girl at UHL
alan troy mary howard 1
Fianna Fáil tipped to run four candidates in West Clare
sixmilebridge road parking
Man arrested & released without charge in investigation into alleged assault of boy (12)
Premium
alan troy mary howard 1
Fianna Fáil tipped to run four candidates in West Clare
sixmilebridge road parking
Man arrested & released without charge in investigation into alleged assault of boy (12)
2022 Clare Co Board Convention -9440
Clare GAA will be keeping door open for media to attend County Board meetings
Ennis Car Park Announcement 026 pat dowling kieran keating
Council & Clare GAA enter commercial arrangement to lease Cloister car park
st josephs doora barefield v clarecastle 03-06-23 colin lynch 1
Intermediate hurling management teams finalised for clubs vying to get back to top tier

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