Tomas McCarthy reports from Walsh Park
CLARE SURVIVED A late scare from Waterford to take the spoils at a sun-kissed Walsh Park this afternoon. Paraic Fanning’s team, roared on by the home fans, hit five of the last six points but Ryan Taylor’s 73rd-minute effort ultimately proved decisive.
Tony Kelly shot five points from play in a tour de force from centre forward and also tracked back deep into his own half. Shane O’Donnell looked sharp on his return to the Clare front line while 2018 championship top scorer Peter Duggan delivered eight points. David McInerney and Patrick O’Connor impressed at the back, especially in the opening thirty five minutes.
Three members of the Waterford attack and midfielder Jamie Barron were taken off before the end. Stephen Bennett, with 11 points, along with subs Maurice Shanahan and Thomas Ryan inspired a comeback that fell just short during six minutes of injury time. The attendance of 11,012, just 34 shy of capacity, were glued to this one until James Owens blew the final whistle.
Click Here: wests tigers jersey
Austin Gleeson, who got four from play, lifted the home crowd with a point after 10 seconds. The Waterford defence switched off in the second minute however as O’Donnell slipped in All Star John Conlon for a simple finish. Duggan and Kelly added points to give the away team the initiative.
The hosts lost captain Noel Connors to injury after 18 minutes. Waterford rallied nonetheless to cut the arrears to one. Bennett struck three points but missed two frees.
Donal Moloney celebrates.
Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO
The Clare backs got on top of their men and Kelly called the shots from centre forward. Five points in a row followed. Duggan completed the half with five frees including three from inside his own half. Kelly landed three from play to send the Banner 1-13 to 0-10 up at the interval.
Waterford closed the gap to three after 49 minutes (1-15 to 0-15). Bennett converted three dead balls and a second from play. Gleeson grabbed a puckout and shot over his shoulder to leave only a goal in it.
Clare pulled five clear with six minutes to go thanks to two Kelly white flags. Fanning emptied his bench and five of the last six points belonged to the Deise. Two Bennett frees and one each from Shanahan, Gleeson and Ryan weren’t enough however.
Scorers for Waterford: Stephen Bennett 0-11 (8fs, 1 65), Austin Gleeson 0-4, Jamie Barron 0-2, Conor Gleeson, Michael Kearney, Shane Bennett, Thomas Ryan, Maurice Shanahan 0-1 each.
Scorers for Clare: Peter Duggan 0-8 (7fs), Tony Kelly 0-5, John Conlon 1-1, Colm Galvin, Shane Golden, Shane O’Donnell, Podge Collins, Aidan McCarthy, Ryan Taylor 0-1 each.
1. Stephen O’Keeffe (Ballygunner)
2. Shane McNulty (De La Salle)
3. Conor Prunty (Abbeyside)
4. Noel Connors (Passage)
5. Philip Mahony (Ballygunner)
6. Tadhg De Burca (Clashmore)
7. Kevin Moran (De La Salle)
8. Jamie Barron (Fourmilewater)
9. Conor Gleeson (Fourmilewater)
10. Austin Gleeson (Mount Sion)
11. Michael Kearney (Ballyduff Upper)
12. Pauric Mahony (Ballygunner)
13. Shane Bennett (Ballysaggart)
14. Stephen Bennett (Ballysaggart)
15. Peter Hogan (Ballygunner)
17. Shane Fives (Tourin) for Connors (18)
22. Thomas Ryan (Tallow) for Hogan (HT)
25. Patrick Curran (Dungarvan) for Shane Bennett (56)
20. Jack Prendergast (Lismore) for Barron (56)
26. Maurice Shanahan (Lismore) for Pauric Mahony (65)
1. Donal Tuohy (Crusheen)
2. Patrick O’Connor (Tubber)
3. David McInerney (Tulla)
4. Jack Browne (Ballyea)
5. Seadna Morey (Sixmilebridge)
6. Colm Galvin (Clonlara)
7. David Fitzgerald (Inagh/Kilnamona)
8. Shane Golden (Sixmilebridge)
9. Cathal Malone (Sixmilebridge)
10. Peter Duggan (Clooney/Quin)
11. Tony Kelly (Ballyea)
12. Diarmuid Ryan (Cratloe)
13. Shane O’Donnell (Eire Og Ennis)
14. John Conlon (Clonlara)
15. Podge Collins (Cratloe)
24. Aron Shanagher (Wolfe Tones Na Sionna) for Collins (53)
18. Aidan McCarthy (Inagh/Kilnamona) for Golden (58)
21. Ryan Taylor (Clooney Quin) for Ryan (65)
Referee: James Owens (Wexford)
– Updated to correct the full-time score.
Subscribe to our new podcast, The42 Rugby Weekly, here: