Clare’s senior camogie team began their year with an eight point loss to Cork on a Sunday afternoon when both Conor Dolan and Davy Fitzgerald were sent to the stands.

Cork 2-06
Clare 0-04
Venue: Cusack Park, Ennis

Trailing by the minimum margin at the halfway point after playing against a near gale force wind, the odds on a Cork victory in this Littlewoods Division 1 camogie league contests were high.

And so it proved at Cusack Park as the visitors held the upperhand in the second half to seal the points.

One of the big talking points came five minutes from the end when Clare joint manager Conor Dolan and Cork coach, Davy Fitzgerald clashed on the sideline. Referee John Dermody flashed red cards to both, sending them to the stand for the remaining time.

Interestingly Fitzgerald’s son Colm is part of the Clare backroom team while Colm’s friend James Hickey, a Cratloe clubman, fills a similar role with Cork.

Davy told The Clare Echo he was “absolutely delighted with the result but a bit disappointed with what happened on the sideline. I don t think that there was any need for it but that’s the way it goes”. Dolan who was on crutches declined to comment on the sideline incident, “that finishes there,” was his response when asked.

While the Leesiders victory was merited, the final scoreline is a little flattering to them on a day when their second goal came two minutes into ‘added time’.

After a pitch inspection at 1pm, referee John Dermody from Westmeath ruled that the game would go ahead. It was clear from the outset that the wind which blew directly down the field, would play a key part in the outcome.

The home side had the assistance of the wind in the opening half and led by the odd point in seven at the interval but they needed to have a much greater advantage if they were to upset the favourites.

A long range effort from a place ball by Chloe Morey gave Clare the lead after three minutes but the visitors quickly levelled through Izzy O’Regan.

Eimear Kelly had Clare back in front in the fifth minute but as the game passed the mid point of the opening half defender Laura Hayes levelled the tie for the second time.

A brace from full forward Aine O’Loughlin pushed the home side twwo clear but Cork had the final say of the half when Amy O’Connor pointed to leave the score at 0-4 to 0-3 at the break.

O’Connor started the second half as she finished the first and her second point tied up the game for the third time before Sorcha McCartan gave the winners the lead for the first time. A point from midfielder Katie O’Mahoney stretched Cork’s lead to two by the tenth minute.

Ten minutes from the end Cork were awarded a penalty which appeared to be a harsh call against Clare goalkeeper Doireann Murphy and full forward McCartan converted to put five points between the sides.

Overall Cork’s greater experience proved a key ingredient in this victory as Libby Coppinger, Lauraa Hayes, Saoirse McCsrsthy, Aishlingx Thompson, and Amy O’Connor impressed throughout.

Despite the result, Clare will be pleased with the display of their defence in which Clare Hehir, Aoife Keane, Alannah Ryan and Chloe Morey shone in front of goalkeeper Doireann Murphy. Up front Eimear Kelly and Aine O’Loughlin worked hard throughout. Clare will entertain Kilkenny in round 2 of the league on Saturday next. Caoimhe Carmody, Lorna McNamara, Muireann Scanlon and Shauna Canny all started a senior league game for the first time in this clash.

Scorers: Cork; Amy O’Connor (1-2); Sorcha McCartan (1-1, 1-0 penalty); Izzy O’Regan, Katie O’Mahoney, Laura Hayes (0-1) each;
Scorers Clare: Aine O’Loughlin (0-2), Chloe Morey (free), Eimear Kelly (0-1) each

Cork:
Amy Lee

Maebh Murphy
Libby Coppinger
Maebh Cahalane

Saoirse McCarthy
Laura Treacy
Laura Hayes

Katie O’Mahoney
Aishling Thompson

Izzy O’Regan
Ciara O’Sullivan
Cliona Healy

Amy O’Connor
Sorcha McCartan
Katrina Mackey.

Subs:
Chloe Sigerson for O’Sullivan (47)
Aoife Hurley for Mackey (60);

Clare:
Doireann Murphy (Clarecastle)

Ciara Grogan (Clooney-Quin)
Clare Hehir (Inagh-Kilnamona)
Caoimhe Kelly (Kilkishen)

Aoife Keane (Inagh-Kilnamona)
Chloe Morey (Sixmilebcridge)
Alannah Ryan (Kilkishen)

Caoimhe Carmody (Kilmaley)
Muireann Scanlon (Sixmilebridge)

Shauna Canny (Feakle-Killanena)
Eimear Kelly (Truagh-Clonlara)
Zi Yan Spillane (Feakle-Killanena)

Robyn Conway (Feakle-Killanena)
Aine O’Loughlin (Truagh-Clonlara)
Lorna McNamara (Feakle-Killanena);

Sub: Regan Conway (Feakle-Killanena) for Canny (43);

Referee: John Dermody (Westmeath)

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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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