All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Qualifiers – Offaly 2-18 Clare 1-18

Offaly defeated Clare by 2-18 to 1-18 after extra time in the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Qualifiers on Saturday at 2:00pm in Tullamore.

Pride shines through as Offaly dig deep to reel in Banner

Offaly 2-18 Clare 1-18

By Alan Walsh for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Monday, June 28, 2010

‘OFFALY PRIDE’ was the key ingredient, according to manager Tom Cribbin, as his side rallied bravely to get the better of a David Tubridy-inspired Clare in this All-Ireland SFC Qualifier. Clare enjoyed leads of 0-6 to 0-1 at half-time and 1-12 to 1-5 after 55 minutes, but Offaly dug deep and found reserves of heart to draw level on the stroke of full time thanks to impressive sub Graham Guilfoyle. And during the opening half of extra time the ‘Faithful’ went score crazy, kicking seven points to Clare’s one but Clare bounced back in the second period of extra time as Barry Toner and the brilliant Tubridy (0-3) kicked four points on the trot but Offaly sealed the deal as Anton Sullivan curled over a beauty.

Both sides lost a player each during this spell – Clare’s Graham Kelly and Offaly’s Brian Darby seeing red – after they were penalised for second bookable offences. It was Offaly’s first win in the qualifiers since 2004 when they defeated Kildare and relieved manager Cribbin admitted there was some harsh talking at half time. Cribbin explained: “I didn’t have to say a terrible lot to them. We announced the three changes and I’ll be honest, selector Declan Farrell, a very passionate Offaly man, stood in just before they went out. He spoke and the players knew they kicked nine wides in the first half and they had also dropped two shots into the goalkeeper’s hands.

“So we were five behind (0-1 to 0-6) but we kicked 11 possible scoring opportunities away and Declan, in Offaly language, told them that. He wanted to see Offaly pride. “You can’t beat one of your own letting them know how hurt he was. And the players felt it and they went out and released the shackles and took off. It took a while but it did happen.” One of Offaly’s three half-time subs, David Egan, provided them with a lifeline, looping the ball over ‘keeper Joe Hayes for a 45th minute goal.

With McNamee (0-2), Casey (free) and McManus kicking points earlier it meant the ‘Faithful’ had clawed back to within a point, (1-5 to 0-9). Clare responded magnificently, registering 1-3 without reply between the 48th and 55th minutes. That man Tubridy dispatched three points, bringing his tally to eight and sub Kevin Cahill rattled the net. Offaly fought back and incredibly they managed to level it and force extra-time. Ken Casey slammed home a 68th-minute goal after McNamee’s strike was palmed onto the crossbar and sub Graham Guilfoyle calmly clipped over the equaliser. “Cork are the one team you’d really like to avoid,” said Cribbin. “We’d like to get another home fixture and I think we’ll improve an awful lot. The pressure will be off the players now and I think you’ll see a different team the next day.”

Offaly: A Mulhall; B Darby, S Brady, K Slattery (0-1); P Sullivan, R Brady, N Darby; B Geraghty (0-1), R Dalton; J Reynolds (0-1), B Connor, C McManus (0-3, 1f, 1’45); A Sullivan (0-1), K Casey (1-4, 4f), N McNamee (0-5).

Subs: S Pender for P Sullivan, G Guilfoyle (0-1) for Dalton, D Egan (1-1) for N Darby, P McConway for Geraghty, S Longeran for Slattery, A McNamee for Egan, N Dunne for A Sullivan.

Clare: J Hayes; M Tubridy, B Duggan, B Carrig; M McMahon, G Kelly, D Callinan; G Quinlan, G Brennan (0-1); D Daly, P O’Dwyer, A Clohessy (0-1); D Tubridy (0-12, 7f, 1’45), D Russell, D Molohan (0-1, f).

Subs: K Cahill (1-1) for Molohan, J Hayes for Russell, L Healy for Carrig, G Kelly (0-1) for Daly, B Clancy for Callinan, B Toner (0-1) for Clohessy, C Dunning for Clancy, S McNeilis for Duggan.

Ref: M Higgins (Fermanagh)

GAA Qualifiers Round 1: Offaly lower Banner in extra-time

From the GAA.ie web site

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Offaly are in the draw for Round 2 of the GAA All-Ireland Qualifiers after a staging a remarkable comeback before completing a 2-18 to 1-18 extra-time victory over Clare in Tullamore on Saturday afternoon. The home side were trailing by seven points, 1-12 to 1-5, with 15 minutes left on the clock, but a Ken Casey goal sparked a remarkable comeback that saw the Faithful men force the game into extra-time in a dramatic finish with the sides finishing level on 1-13 to 2-10. Clare imploded in the first half and the excellent David Tubridy’s point was their sole response to seven scores from Offaly in the first period of extra-time.

Offaly’s forwards were on fire by the end of the game, but they started quite differently. The Banner led 0-6 to 0-1 at the break after Offaly had kicked eight wides in the first half, with their solitary score coming from the boot of Brian Geraghty after 25 minutes. Niall McNamee and Ciaran McManus finally pointed the way for a resurgent Faithful outfit after the break, before they came right back into the game seven minutes into the second half when David Egan’s shot was cruelly deflected past Joe Hayes, the Clare goalkeeper, to leave just a point between the sides. Clare, however, fashioned the best possible response when David Tubridy moved them two points clear with his fourth free of the afternoon.

Two minutes later, the Banner had a goal of their own when Gary Brennan burst through on goal and fed Kevin Cahill, who finished neatly to leave his side 1-10 to 1-5 clear. Tubridy knocked over another free as well as his third from play to leave Clare seven clear and, seemingly, in cruise control. However, Offaly showed true grit in the closing stages to haul back their opponents’ lead. McManus, Casey and Geraghty all hit the target for the home side as they clinically reeled Clare in over the final quarter. Graham Kelly stemmed the tide momentarily, but Casey pounced for a crucial Offaly goal with two minutes left on the clock to leave just a point between the sides. Graham Guilfoyle then clipped over the equaliser from play a minute later and the sides were level.

Remarkably, Offaly even had a chance to win the game in injury-time, but Ken Casey struck a free wide and the game went to extra-time. Offaly had all the momentum and they made that advantage tell by kicking the four points in succession in the first half of extra-time, with Casey and Guilfoyle again striking crucial points from play. Tubridy, again, was ploughing a lone furrow for Clare while offally were reeling off points with ease to cruise six clear at the end of the first period of extra-time.

Clare, however, were not finished and a pair of Tubridy points as well as a Barry Toner effort cut the gap to three. Tubridy even had time to miss a great goal chance, hitting the side netting when he might have levelled the game. Clare’s hopes were finally ended when they had Graham Kelly sent to the line following an off-the-ball incident. Ciaran McManus sealed the win with an injury-time point for Offaly, who, on this evidence, could prove a tough nut to crack in Round 2.

Offaly: A Mulhall; B Darby, S Brady, P Sullivan; N Darby, R Brady, K Slattery; B Geraghty, R Dalton; J Reynolds, B Connor, C McManus; A Sullivan, K Casey, N McNamee.

Clare: J Hayes; M Tubridy, B Duggan, B Carrig; M McMahon, G Kelly (captain), D Callinan; G Quinlan, G Brennan; M O’Shea, P O’Dwyer, A Clohessy; D Tubridy, D Russell, D Daly.

Team News

Offaly (SF v Clare) — A Mulhall; B Darby, S Brady, P Sullivan; N Darby, R Brady, K Slattery; B Geraghty, R Dalton; J Reynolds, B Connor, C McManus; A Sullivan, K Casey, N McNamee.

Clare (SF) — J Hayes; M Tubridy, B Duggan, B Carrig; M McMahon, G Kelly, D Callinan; G Quinlan, G Brennan; M O’Shea, P O’Dwyer, A Clohessy; D Tubridy, D Russell, D Daly

Last year’s qualifiers
Donegal 0-13 Clare 1-7; Wexford 2-11 Offaly 0-16.

2010 Championship
Waterford 1-10 Clare 0-9; Meath 1-20 Offaly 2-7.