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Winning start for Lohan’s Clare in Munster senior hurling league

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*Aidan McCarthy hit the winning score for Clare. Photograph: Martin Connolly

Brian Lohan’s first competitive game as Clare senior hurling manager has ended in a one point win over All-Ireland champions Tipperary.

Clare 2-17
Tipperary 1-19
Venue: McDonagh Park, Nenagh

Clare finished well with the final four points of the contest to get life under Brian Lohan off to a positive winning start in Nenagh on a cold December’s afternoon in front of 830 spectators.

Both sides used the outing mainly for experimentation with Liam Sheedy playing more fresher faces while Lohan trialled men in different positions while also giving more central roles to individuals that have been on the fringes in recent years.

Though the more dominant in the opening half, Tipperary trailed by two points at the sounding of Colm Lyons’ half-time whistle, this due to Clare finishing off their only two goal chances. Ian Galvin goaled on twelve minutes when he masterfully read an Andrew Fahey puckout and robbed the breaking ball before firing past Paul Maher.

Maher was picking the sliotar from the net four minutes later as Podge Collins picked out Seadna Morey who blitzed his way past the Premier County defence before raising the green flag. Jason Forde had eight points to his name by the time the teams retired to the dressing room with Mark Kehoe also creating opportunities further afield.

Tipp started brightly to the second half with 1-02 inside five minutes. Tom Fox rattled Andrew Fahey’s net while Paul Flynn began to find his range, he would score three excellent points during the game.

Podge Collins came alive in the second half as others began to tire, he along with Niall Deasy from frees kept the scoreboard ticking which proved to be vital come the final whistle. Lohan emptied the bench and called ashore Galvin and Morey having seen enough from the pair early on.

Substitutes Cathal McInerney and Aidan McCarthy nailed the equaliser and winning score respectively as Clare finished the better of the teams to secure the victory. Tipperary travel to Limerick on Friday with the Banner welcoming John Kiely’s men to Sixmilebridge on January 5th.

Reading too much into this outing would be a futile exercise with the game of little significance and neither outfit having much preparation under their belts. From Clare’s point of view, full-back remains a problem area with the ball coming out of attack quite easily on occasions though there is reason to be optimistic when looking at the final quarter. For them, Podge Collins, Eoin Quirke, Kevin Hehir and Ian Galvin did well.

Little emphasis will be placed on this competition by Liam Sheedy and his management. Nonetheless when newer players are given the chance, they will be very eager to impress and that was the case for Paul Flynn and Robert Byrne. Others to contribute positively over the course of the game were Joe O’Dwyer, Mark Kehoe and Jason Forde.

Scorers Clare: N Deasy (0-07 5f), I Galvin (1-02), P Collins (0-03), S Morey (1-00), D Ryan (0-03), A Fahey (0-01 1f), C McInerney (0-01), A McCarthy (0-01).

Scorers Tipperary: J Forde (0-14 7f 2SC) P Flynn (0-03), T Fox (1-00), M Breen (0-01), M Kehoe (0-01)

Clare:
1: Andrew Fahey (Whitegate)
2: Jason McCarthy (Inagh/Kilnamona)
3: Jack Browne (Ballyea)
4: Eoin Quirke (Whitegate)
20: Cathal Malone (Sixmilebridge)
6: Kevin Hehir (Inagh/Kilnamona)
7: David Fitzgerald (Inagh/Kilnamona)
9: David Reidy (Éire Óg)
12: Seadna Morey (Sixmilebridge)
11: Niall Deasy (Ballyea)
8: Diarmuid Ryan (Cratloe)
10: Ian Galvin (Clonlara)
13: Mikey O’Neill (Kilmaley)
14: Colin Guilfoyle (Newmarket-on-Fergus)
15: Podge Collins (Cratloe)

Subs:
21: Aidan McCarthy (Inagh/Kilnamona) for Ryan (19)
23: Ryan Taylor (Clooney/Quin) for Galvin (41)
19: Aron Shanagher (Wolfe Tones) for Morey (50)
25: Cathal McInerney (Cratloe) for O’Neill (54)
26: Domhnall McMahon (Tubber) for Guilfoyle (58)

Tipperary:
1: Paul Maher (Moyne-Templetuohy)
2: Joe O’Dwyer (Killenaule)
3: Jamie Moloney (Drom-Inch)
4: Craig Morgan (Kilruane MacDonaghs)
5: Alan Flynn (Kiladangan)
6: Ronan Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)
7: Robert Byrne (Portroe)
8: Michael Breen (Ballina)
9: Paddy Cadell (JK Brackens)
12: Jerome Cahill (Kilruane MacDonaghs)
11: Tom Fox (Éire Óg Annacarty)
10: Mark Kehoe (Kilsheehan-Kilcash)
13: Willie Connors (Kiladangan)
14: Jason Forde (Silvermines)
15: Paul Flynn (Kiladangan)

Subs:
24: Cian Darcy (Kilruane MacDonaghs) for Fox (52)
23: Mark McCarthy (Toomevara) for J Cahill (59)
18: Paul Maher (Kilsheehan-Kilcash) for O’Dwyer (61)
17: Barry Heffernan (Éire Óg Nenagh) for Moloney (68)

Referee: Colm Lyons (Cork)

Páraic McMahon is Head of News & Sport with The Clare Echo. The Newmarket-on-Fergus native also writes for national papers including The Irish Examiner, The Irish Independent and The Irish Times along with doing work for RTÉ, Today FM, TheJournal.ie and The42.ie. A graduate of Mary Immaculate College, Páraic was previously employed by The Clare Herald and Clare FM. If you have a story, tip or some feedback for him then send an email to - paraic@clareecho.ie

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