All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Qualifiers – Kilkenny 0-20 Tipperary 1-14

Kilkenny bravehearts put their hands up

Kilkenny 0-20 Tipperary 1-14

By Diarmuid O’Flynn for the Irish Examiner newspaper

To quote a line from William Shakespeare, Tipperary went to Nowlan Park on Saturday evening for this winner-take-all All-Ireland qualifier ‘to bury Caesar, not to praise him’. They didn’t succeed but what an effort they made, and what an effort it took to repel the would-be assassins! Nowlan Park was a steaming teeming cauldron on Saturday, a sellout crowd of just short of 24,000 who had come to see their hurling gladiators engaged in a fight to the death. The home side had the bulk of the support, the roof almost lifting from the various stands when it was announced that ‘there is one addition to the Kilkenny panel…..’ and that was as far as the announcer got.

The returning Henry Shefflin did eventually make an appearance in the 65th minute, and almost immediately contributed, muscling his way into space before setting up Richie Power for a crucial point. Arguably, however, as far as events on the field went there was an even bigger announcement before that, another addition to the match programme – injured corner-back Paul Murphy had made an even more miraculous recovery from injury to take his place on the starting 15 and play a crucial role in a match-winning defence superbly marshalled by centre-back Brian Hogan.

“It’s hard to single out anyone,” said Hogan of the defensive foundation on which victory was built; “Jackie (Tyrrell) came back with a sore calf, supposedly, but the way he was charging out with balls there . “Murph set the tone in the first ten or 15 minutes, came out like a train with balls, no-one going to get in his way. Then you had Joycey (wing-back Kieran Joyce), he’s been catching great balls all year — I think Tommy (Walsh, the other wing-back) felt a bit left out so he came in with a few great catches.”

Hogan could have added full-back JJ Delaney and himself to those four because in the final quarter it almost became a contest among those Kilkenny backs as to who could make the most spectacular or the most telling catch. Mind you, at the other end the same thing was happening, the Tipperary defensive sextet of Conor O’Brien, emergency full-back Paddy Stapleton (Paul Curran a late cry-off), Michael Cahill, Brendan Maher, Conor O’Mahony and Padraic Maher also in commanding form. The difference, ultimately, was that the Kilkenny attack were able to make just enough inroads into that defence to get the occasional score. Walter Walsh (three points); Richie Hogan, (three points); Richie Power, (two points) and captain Colin Fennelly with one point. That four have scored more, and will score more again, but they will never score more valuable points.

The game was decided only in the last ten minutes, a time when many felt that if Tipperary were to win this was where a Kilkenny side coming off two really hard games in the last two weeks, four defenders over 30, temperature peaking at 26 degrees, would be most vulnerable. They were wrong. It was tied at half-time, 0-9 to 1-6, free-taker Eoin Larkin with five for Kilkenny, on-song Lar Corbett with the Tipperary goal in the 23rd minute but then forced to depart with a pulled hamstring only six minutes later. It was still tied 14 minutes into the second half (0-12 to 1-9), low-scoring but a million-miles-an-hour.

“It was tense and intense,” said Brian Hogan, “Even the lead-up to it. Lads were anxious, playing on your home patch you never want to lose, especially when you’re playing the neighbours, that adds a little extra pressure. “The match itself was fierce intense, not much of a breeze, the heat, the physicality thrown in top of that. It was a real battle, never very much between us.” Even with only two minutes remaining on the clock there was still just two points between them, Tipperary attacking. “Oh God, would someone please speed up that clock!” Barry Henriquez, local Kilkenny radio commentator, implored.

It wasn’t necessary and it was Kilkenny, that ‘old’ defence dominating, who finished stronger. The obituaries? Hold them for a while, the advice of Brian Hogan. “We didn’t talk about it but I’m sure players were conscious of it individually — I know I was. We’re in this for ourselves, we’re in it to win and lads aren’t ready to hang up their boots just yet. The realisation was that if we lost today we’d be out of the championship in early July. None of us wanted that as a legacy.”

Scorers for Kilkenny: E Larkin (0-11, ten frees); W Walsh (0-3); R Hogan (0-3); R Power 0-2; C F Scorers for Tipperary: E Kelly (0-5, five frees); J O’Dwyer (0-3); L Corbett (1-0); S Callanan (0-2); J Woodlock, J O’Brien, N McGrath, K Bergin (0-1 each).

KILKENNY: E Murphy; P Murphy, JJ Delaney, J Tyrrell; T Walsh, B Hogan, K Joyce; L Ryan, E Larkin; M Ruth, R Power, C Fennelly; TJ Reid, W Walsh, R Hogan.

Subs for Kilkenny: G Aylward for Fennelly (inj. 20); A Fogarty for Aylward (52); H Shefflin for Ruth (65).

TIPPERARY: B Cummins; C O’Brien, P Stapleton, , M Cahill; B Maher, C O’Mahony, Padraig Maher; J Woodlock, S McGrath (c); Patrick Maher, N McGrath, J O’Brien; J O’Dwyer, E Kelly, L Corbett.

Subs for Tipperary: S Callanan for Corbett (inj. 29); K Bergin for S McGrath (35); J Forde for Patrick Maher (53); G Ryan for O’Brien (54); B O’Meara for Kelly (64).

Referee: B Gavin (Offaly)


Kilkenny dig deep to beat Tipperary

Report from the web site

GAA Hurling All-Ireland Senior Championship Phase II: Kilkenny 0-20 Tipperary 1-14

Kilkenny rolled back the years and delivered yet another incredible performance to keep their hopes of retaining the Liam MacCarthy Cup alive with a three-point defeat of Tipperary at Nowlan Park.

With the game perfectly balanced at half-time – Tipperary’s Seamus Callanan drew his side level in added time – the Cats delivered a brilliant second half defensive display,  with man of the match Eoin Larkin pitching in with 0-11, to progress to Phase III, where they will meet Waterford next Saturday.

Tipperary had taken an early 1-4 to 0-3 lead after Lar Corbett grabbed a goal on the quarter-hour mark, but Tipp’s hopes were dealt a huge blow when the Thurles Sarsfields man was forced off with a hamstring injury towards the end of the first half.

John O’Brien’s fine point put Tipp 1-8 to 0-10 at the start of the second half, but when they had a great goal chance through Eoin Kelly, his shot deflected out for a 65 by the brilliant JJ Delaney.

Delaney, Jackie Tyrrell and Brian Hogan were immense in the final quarter, when Kilkenny finally started to pull away, Walter Walsh grabbing two crucial scores and Larkin increasing their lead from placed balls.

Kieran Bergin and James Woodlock pegged the Cats back with scores in the final 10 minutes, but Brian Cody decided to bring Henry Shefflin on for the final six minutes, and he set up a score for Richie Power before Colin Fennelly added another point to nudge his side four clear at the death.

Scorers for Kilkenny: E Larkin 0-11 (0-11f), W Walsh 0-3, R Hogan 0-3, R Power 0-2, C Fennelly 0-1.

Scorers for Tipperary: E Kelly 0-5 (0-4f, 0-1 ’65), L Corbett 1-0, J O’Dwyer 0-3, S Callanan 0-2, J O’Brien 0-1, N McGrath 0-1, J Woodlock 0-1, K Bergin 0-1.

Kilkenny: E Murphy; P Murphy, JJ Delaney, J Tyrell; T Walsh, B Hogan, K Joyce; M Ruth, L Ryan; TJ Reid, R Power, E Larkin; C Fennelly, W Walsh, R Hogan. Subs: Ger Aylward for Reid (20), Aidan Fogarty for Aylward (52), Henry Shefflin for Ruth (63).

Tipperary: B Cummins; C O’Brien, P Stapleton, M Cahill; B Maher, C O’Mahony, Pádraic Maher; J Woodlock, S McGrath; Patrick Maher, N McGrath, J O’Brien; J O’Dwyer, E Kelly, L Corbett. Subs: S Callanan for Corbett (28), K Bergin for S McGrath (HT), J Forde for Patrick Maher (52), G Ryan for O’Brien (54), B O’Meara for Kelly (63).

Attendance: 23,307


Team News

The Tipperary Senior Hurling team to play Kilkenny in Saturday’s All-Ireland Qualifier game at 7pm in Nowlan Park Kilkenny shows 4 changes from the team which lost to Limerick in the Munster semi-final. Conor O’Brien replaces the injured Kieran Bergin at wing-back while up front, John O’Dwyer, Eoin Kelly and Lar Corbett will form a new look full-forward line as Pa Bourke, Shane Bourke and Seamus Callanan drop to the bench.

1. Brendan Cummins (Ballybacon-Grange)
2. Paddy Stapleton (Borris-Ileigh)
3. Paul Curran (Mullinahone)
4. Michael Cahill (Thurles Sarsfields)
5. Conor O’Brien (Eire Og Annacarty)
6. Conor O’Mahony (Newport)
7. Padraic Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)
8. Brendan Maher (Borris-Ileigh)
9. Shane McGrath (Ballinahinch) Captain
10. Patrick Maher (Lorrha and Dorrha)
11. Noel McGrath (Loughmore-Castleiney)
12. John O’Brien (Toomevara)
13. John O’Dwyer (Killenaule)
14. Eoin Kelly (Mullinahone)
15. Lar Corbett (Thurles Sarsfields)

The Kilkenny team to play Tipperary is as follows – 

1. Eoin Murphy Glenmore
2. Conor Fogarty Erins Own
3. J.J. Delaney Fenians
4. Jackie Tyrrell James Stephens
5. Tommy Walsh Tullaroan
6. Brian Hogan O’loughlin Gaels
7. Kieran Joyce Rower Inistioge
8. Michael Rice Carrickshock
9. Lester Ryan Clara
10. Walter Walsh Tullogher Rosbercon
11. Richie Power Carrickshock
12. Eoin Larkin James Stephens
13. Colin Fennelly Ballyhale Shamrocks
14. Richie Hogan Danesfort
15. Aidan Fogarty Emeralds

16. David Herity Dunnamaggin
17. Paddy Hogan Danesfort
18. Padraig Walsh Tullaroan
19. Richie Doyle Barrow Rangers
20. T J Reid Ballyhale Shamrocks
21. Matthew Ruth James Stephens
22. Ger Aylward Glenmore
23. Willie Phelan Dunnamaggin
24. Mark Kelly O’loughlin Gaels
25. Joe Brennan St. Patricks
26. Brian Kennedy St Lactains
Fixture Details

GAA Hurling All Ireland Senior Championship Phase II

Nowlan Park 19:00

Cill Chainnigh v Tiobraid Árann

Referee: Brian Gavin (Uíbh Fhailí)

(E.T. if Necessary)

Ticket Details

This Saturday’s game in Nowlan Park is all ticket with unreserved seating;

Prices as follows;

All Stand = €20
All Terrace = €15
Juvenile = €5 (must be accompanied by adult)
Student/OAP = €15 (Pay full price with €5 refund at designated stile with valid ID)

Juvenile Groups = €3 each juv and 1 adult free with every 10. Applications must be sent to from the club secs email address.

Applications asap through your Divisional Ticket Co-Ordinator. Don’t delay as all seating is on open sale on a first come first served basis.

Tickets are available through clubs only at this stage. The GAA Ticket Office has confirmed that tickets for the Kilkenny V Tipperary Phase II Hurling Championship match in Nowlan Park, Kilkenny on Saturday evening next have sold out. This game takes place at 7.00pm and supporters are asked to attend earlier.

Match Coverage

This game will be shown live on TV3

Match Preview

Most previews of the 2013 Championship had Kilkenny and Tipperary slated to meet at some pivotal stage of the season, but nobody could have predicted they would come together in a knock-out game before any of the provincial championships have been decided.

Kilkenny were favourites to retain the Leinster title after last year’s so-called hiccup in losing to Galway in the provincial final, but Brian Cody’s side lost to Dublin after a replay in the semi-final at Portlaoise last Saturday night and have now gone two years without a Leinster title for the first time since 1997.

Tipperary, too, were expected to claim a third successive Munster title and to come back stronger than ever under new manager Eamon O’Shea after last year’s All-Ireland semi-final defeat to the Cats. However, the Munster championship was turned on its head when the Premier County were beaten by Limerick in the semi-final, and as luck would have it they were pitched into Phase 2 of the Qualifiers against their great tormentors of the recent past.

One of the arguments detractors of the hurling qualifiers frequently make is the huge number of lop-sided games they have thrown up since they came in back in 2002. This, however, is quite simply the biggest game in the 11-year history of the ‘back door’ in hurling and not even the most cock-sure of pundits is willing to put their neck on the line to call it.

The fact that Tipperary or Kilkenny will be out of the 2013 Championship by 8.30pm on Saturday night is something people have been attempting to come to terms with since Kilkenny’s replay defeat to Dublin on Saturday. Kilkenny have made 16 All-Ireland semi-finals in a row while Tipperary haven’t been idle at this time of the year since 1999. It all feeds into the unmistakable sense that the bases of power are shifting, and with Limerick, Clare and Dublin on the rise, there’s a hint of revolution in the air.

Given their prowess in the provincial championships, this is unsurprisingly their first-ever meeting in the qualifiers. The sides have met in each of the last four championship seasons, however, with the 2009, 2010 and 2011 games all being All-Ireland finals. Last year’s encounter, an All-Ireland semi-final, was the exception in every sense given the Cats romped to an 18-point victory after three evenly matched and very exciting games.

While those games can’t be discounted, the Allianz League final this year is a far more relevant reference point. A full-blooded and thoroughly enjoyable game played at a packed Nowlan Park at the start of May, it was a championship game in everything but name. Largely thanks to a brilliant first half performance from Michael Fennelly, who scored 2-3 playing in an attacking role, the Cats won by 2-17 to 0-20 in a fiery game that saw JJ Delaney and Lar Corbett red carded.

That was Kilkenny’s tenth successive competitive victory at Nowlan Park, with their last defeat coming back in March 2010 when they lost an Allianz League game to Galway. Crucially, Kilkenny are short a number of key personnel from the league final, with Michael Fennelly and Paul Murphy still out of contention and Jackie Tyrrell, who is named in the side, still recovering from a quad injury. Henry Shefflin hasn’t been named in the squad, but that won’t stop the rumour mill spinning about a potential late inclusion on Saturday night.

While Kilkenny look significantly weakened in key areas, Tipperary manager Eamon O’Shea has selected from a full squad and has made four changes from the side that lost to Limerick. The one change in defence is enforced, Conor O’Brien replacing the injured Kieran Bergin. However, he has completely replaced the full-forward line, Eoin Kelly earning a recall, Lar Corbett returning from injury and John O’Dwyer getting a start after hitting 1-3 when coming off the bench the last day.

It’s little surprise O’Shea has made so many changes in attack given his side were outscored by 0-8 to 0-2 in the closing 21 minutes of the Limerick game, and they look a stronger attacking unit now, with Jason Forde also poised to play some part from the bench having been ruled out the last day through illness.

Kilkenny boss Cody has made two changes from the Dublin game. Lester Ryan and Colin Fennelly are named in the starting XV in place of TJ Reid and Cillian Buckley, both of whom are reported to be carrying knocks.

Kilkenny have now been in action on three of the last four weekends while Tipperary have had nearly a month to regroup since the Limerick defeat. The Cats are starting to show signs of wear and tear, especially in defence, and if a new-look Tipperary attack can fire on Saturday, Kilkenny could be looking at their earliest championship exit since 1996.

Rarely has a game at this stage of the season been so keenly anticipated, with the ‘sold-out’ signs going up over Nowlan Park last Tuesday after an unprecedented demand for tickets.

Kilkenny: E Murphy; C Fogarty, JJ Delaney, J Tyrrell; T Walsh, B Hogan, K Joyce; M Rice, L Ryan; W Walsh, R Power, E Larkin; C Fennelly, R Hogan, A Fogarty.

Tipperary: B Cummins; P Stapleton, P Curran, M Cahill; C O’Brien, C O’Mahony, P Maher; B Maher, S McGrath; P Maher, N McGrath, J O’Brien; J O’Dwyer, E Kelly, L Corbett.

Tipperary-Kilkenny – Last 5 Championship Clashes

2012: Kilkenny 4-24 Tipperary 1-15

2011: Kilkenny 2-17 Tipperary 1-16

2010: Tipperary 4-17 Kilkenny 1-18

2009: Kilkenny 2-22 Tipperary 0-23

2003: Kilkenny 3-18 Tipperary 0-15


All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship Qualifiers – Clare 1-32 Laois 0-15

Clare 1-32 Laois 0-15

Report from the web site

Clare destroyed Laois by 1-32 to 0-15 to reach Phase 3 of the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship at Cusack Park in Ennis. A late goal from substitute Shane O’Donnell was the cherry on top for Clare, who registered scores from play from 15 players, including 13 starters. Clare led by 0-17 to 0-08 at half-time and they never let up on a lacklustre Laois, whose first year under Seamus Plunkett’s management ended in severe disappointment.

Colin Ryan hit 0-11 for the Banner men, but Peter Duggan and Darach Honan also logged strong displays. After disappointing in the manner of their defeat to Cork in the Munster championship, Davy Fitzgerald will be thrilled with the way he side never let up against Laois. Leading by nine points at the break and by 15 after 50 minutes, the temptation must have been to rest up ahead of next week’s clash with a phase one winner.

Fitzgerald did empty the bench, but they all hit the ground running and registered solid displays to keep the scoreboard ticking over. Clare led by 0-06 to 0-03 after just eight minutes, but the impressive Zane Keenan hit his third point of the game to reduce that to two. That would be Laois’ last score until the 27th minute. By that stage, Clare had accelerated clear with seven points in a row to lead by 0-13 to 0-04. Stephen Maher stopped the rot for Laois, but by half-time the nine-point lead had been restored thanks to Ryan’s accuracy from frees.

Laois started the second-half brightly and Maher once more registered a score after Honan hit a great point from the left for Clare. But the Banner men took total control of the game and hit seven of the next eight points. At this stage, it was just pride in the jersey that was keeping Laois going as the result was beyond doubt, but when Keenan flashed a 20-metre free over the bar in the 57th minute their challenge ground to a halt. Clare continued to pile on the scores, and when O’Donnell hit the net in the 68th minute, it just compounded a cruel day for Laois.

Clare: P Kelly; D O’Donovan, D McInerney (0-01), C Dillon (0-01); B Bugler (0-01), P Donnellan (0-01), P O’Connor (0-01); C Ryan (0-11, 0-08f, 0-02’65), P Duggan (0-04); J Conlon (0-01), T Kelly (0-01), C Galvin (0-01); P Collins (0-02), D Honan (0-03), C McGrath (0-03).

Subs: S O’Donnell (1-00) for Honan (42 mins), A Cunningham for Conlon (53 mins), L Markham (0-01) for Galvin (56 mins), S Morey for Bugler (58 mins), J Clancy for Ryan (61 mins).

Laois: E Reilly; B Stapleton, D Maher, J A Delaney; J Fitzpatrick, M Whelan, G Burke; C Healy, J Walsh; S Maher (0-05, 0-03f), Z Keenan (0-04, 0-01f), T Fitzgerald; J Brophy (0-01), W Hyland (0-03), B Dunne.

Subs: PJ Scully (0-02) for Brophy (24 mins), C Dunne for Walsh (34 mins), B Duggan for Dune (44 mins), B Conroy for Fitzgerald (60 mins), A Collier for Healy (62 mins).

Referee: Colm Lyons (Cork)

Team News

The Clare Senior Hurling team is as follows –

Patrick Kelly (Inagh-Kilnamona); Domhnall O’Donovan (Clonlara), David McInerney (Tulla), Cian Dillon (Crusheen); Brendan Bugler (Whitegate), Patrick Donnellan (O’Callaghan Mills), Patrick O’Connor (Tubber); Colm Galvin (Clonlara), Colin Ryan (Newmarket-on-Fergus); John Conlon (Clonlara), Tony Kelly (Ballyea), ; Peter Duggan (Clooney/Quin); Padraic Collins (Cratloe), Darach Honan (Clonlara), Conor McGrath (Cratloe).


All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Qualifiers Round 2 – Laois 3-17 Clare 0-10

Micko’s managerial reign reaches inevitable end as Clare fail to fire

By Ewan MacKenna for the Irish Examiner newspaper

Clare 0-10 Laois 3-17

On this day of all days, perhaps it’s best to leave the first words to the greatest. “It was a difficult way to finish up, but the lads did their best against a very good side. But I took this on for one year only and that has ended now. That is it. I won’t say any more beyond that.” And with that, the speculation was flung about like a beach ball and journalists rushed for laptops to type up tributes. If it was the end of Mick O’Dwyer, and not just his time in Clare, it wasn’t befitting as a couple of moments off the field showed you just what he was up against here. Long before the start, some stewards hanging around the press box were asked about what he’d done for the county. “You can’t make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear,” was the stark reply. If that was bad, the exodus at the end of the hurling was worse, as yellow and blue evacuated, leaving the greyness of the terracing in its place. “We’ll leave these fools to their basketball,” one fan said as he rushed for the gates.

If he’d hung around a little longer, he would have seen a decent effort from his county for a half-hour. At that point, they led 0-6 to 0-2, Rory Donnelly kicking two outstanding points while David Tubridy, as always, kept his side ticking along. In attack, Laois lacked movement; passing and shooting were awful (11 wides in the half), they struggled physically and the defence lacked intensity, allowing Clare to eke out scores with safe hand-passing moves.

Little did we know at that point, but Laois had tricked us. It was like the child trying to get into a car, only each time he reached the door the adult laughed and hit the accelerator. A Darren Strong point before the break started it, then Donie Kingston fed John O’Loughlin for a goal and at the interval they somehow led 1-7 to 0-6. That broke the home spirit. Soon after the break Strong set up David Conway to hit the net and, in a 16-minute spell, Laois had outscored their opponents 2-9 to 0-0. The towel thrown in, Ross Munnelly added another goal as all eyes turned to the sidelines.

“They just didn’t seem to be able to get their teeth into the second half,” said Justin McNulty. “We got the first goal and got a bit of momentum. Clare just couldn’t recover. I suppose the extra game helped us but when a team starts to build confidence, that’s critical. Once a team realises that, that’s when they start to get results. Also we know we have got major improvements to make.” But the last word can only be about one man. “It’ll be a huge gap,” said McNulty of his counterpart. “Micko has had some career and he can retire with dignity, whenever that time comes. Now might not even be that time.”

Scorers for Clare: D Tubridy 0-6 (5f), R Donnelly 0-2, G Kelly 0-1, S Ryan 0-1.

Scorers for Laois: R Munnelly 1-4 (3f), J O’Loughlin 1-1, D Strong 0-3, D Conway 1-0, C Begley, D Kingston(1f) 0-2 each, K Lillis, P Clancy, C Meredith, E Costello (f), T Shiel (f) 0-1 each.

CLARE: Joe Hayes; Gordan Kelly, L Healy, M McMahon; D Callinan, John Hayes, Graham Kelly; G Quinlan, C O’Connor; S McGrath, I McInerney, A Clohessy; D Tubridy, G Brennan, R Donnelly.

Subs for Clare: C Dunning for Clohessy (h-t); C Dixon for G Kelly (h-t); S Ryan for McGrath (48); J Keane for O’Connor (60); P McMahon for Brennan (63).

LAOIS: E Culliton; P O’Leary, M Timmons, P Begley; D Strong, K Lillis, P McMahon; P Clancy, J O’Loughlin; B Sheehan, C Meredith, C Begley; R Munnelly, D Kingston, D Conway.

Subs for Laois: C Kelly for Kingston (46); E Costello for Kelly (51); D Booth for P Begley (53); C Boyle for Clancy (55); T Shiel for C Begley (57).

Referee: Conor Lane (Cork)


Laois 3-17 Clare 0-10

Report from the web site

Mick O’Dwyer stepped down as Clare manager after powerful periods immediately before and after half-time was enough to see Laois past his Clare side, 3-17 to 0-10, in round two of the qualifiers in Cusack Park, Ennis. O’Dwyer’s has decided not to seek a second year in charge of the Banner men on the back of this defeat.

Goals either side of the break from John O’Loughlin and David Conway set Laois on their way to victory, but they cut lose in the second-half, allowing Clare just four points in a stingy defensive display. Ten minutes before half-time Clare had led by four points after a strong opening period, but they failed to hit the target for the next 27 minutes until David Tubridy landed his fourth point. But by that stage Laois had the win secured and led by 2-12 to 0-07 after their forwards finally found the target after hitting ten wides in the first-half.

Initially Clare made plenty of progress by feeding direct ball into Ger Brennan, who once again braved a broken rib to line out for the Banner. He was involved in everything good that Clare did early on and, after his move to the edge of the square, the points began to flow for Clare. Darren Strong had given Laois the lead in the second minute, but Clare hit back with three in a row from David Tubridy (2) and a great score from Rory Donnelly in the ninth minute.

Laois looked in slight disarray at this juncture, especially when Tubridy and Donnelly found the target again to open their lead out to 0-05 to 0-02. It could have got a lot worse for the O’Moore men in the 25th minute when wing-back Graham Kelly charged down on goal, only for his blistering drive to clear the crossbar. But that’s where Clare’s positive day ended and Laois went on to hit 1-05 before and after half-time to end the contest. The key score arrive in the 31st minute when O’Loughlin finished smartly to the net after Donie Kingston’s clever pass over the top, but five minutes after the restart David Conway found the top corner for a splendid goal to end any Clare hopes. David Tubridy kept Clare’s score respectable with three second-half frees but, late on, Munnelly palmed to the net form close range to crown the Laois win.

Laois: E Culliton; P O’Leary, M Timmons, P Begley; D Strong (0-03), K Lillis (0-01), P McMahon; J O’Loughlin (1-01), P Clancy (0-01); B Sheehan, C Meredith (0-01), C Begley (0-02); R Munnelly (1-03, 0-02f), D Kingston (0-02, 0-01f), D Conway (1-01).

Subs: C Kelly for Kingston (46 mins), E Costello (0-01, 0-01f) for Kelly (51 mins), D Booth for P Begley (53 mins), C Boyle for Clancy (55 mins), T Shiels (0-01, 0-01f) for C Begley (57 mins).

Clare: Joe Hayes; G Kelly, L Healy, M McMahon; D Callinan, John Hayes, G Brennan; G Quinlan, C O’Connor; S McGrath, I McInerney, A Clohessy; R Donnelly (0-02), G Kelly (0-01), D Tubridy (0-06, 0-05f).

Subs: C Dunning for Clohessy (h-t), C Dixon for G Kelly (h-t), S Ryan (0-01) for McGrath (48 mins), J Keane for O’Connor (60 mins), P McMahon for Brennan (63 mins).

Referee: Conor Lane (Cork)

Match Preview

Clare and Laois meet for the third time in the Qualifiers at Cusack Park on Saturday, where the footballers round off a double header of action in both codes between the counties.

In the very first year of the Qualifiers, back in 2001, Laois enjoyed a 0-13 to 1-6 Round 2 win over the Banner County at O’Moore Park, and then a year later repeated the dose when they ran out 1-19 to 1-6 winners at the same stage of the competition.

Clare performed very well in their Munster semi-final defeat to Cork, with midfielder Gary Brennan and corner back Martin McMahon standing out in a 1-20 to 1-11 defeat. Laois were soundly beaten by Louth in Leinster, but recovered very well to beat Carlow by 3-13 to 0-12 in Round 1 of the Qualifiers last week, despite being short four players who have left for the US for the summer.

Clare manager Mick O’Dwyer comes up against a county he managed from 2002 to 2006 and famously led to a Leinster title in 2003. However, the Kerry legend says he has little or no inside information on his former charges.

“I wouldn’t have much close knowledge, quite a lot of them are new players. I’d know about five or six of the team all right but the rest of them I wouldn’t know too much about,” he said.

“They played very well against Carlow, they’d a big win and they only came down from Division One recently. They’re above us and have plenty of experience playing top level teams but we’re looking forward to it.”

TG4 Munster Ladies Football Senior Championship – Kerry 8-25 Clare 1-10

Kerry defeated Clare by 8-25 to 1-10 in the TG4 Munster Ladies Football Senior Championship on Saturday July 6th at Scartaglin.

TG4 Munster Ladies SFC round-up

By Jackie Cahill

WILLIAM O’Sullivan’s Kerry ran riot against a depleted Clare in Scartaglin on Saturday evening to book their place in next Saturday’s TG4 Munster ladies senior football championship final. The Kingdom scored a massive 8-25 to 1-10 win against the Banner County to set up a showdown with provincial and All-Ireland champions Cork in Castletownroche. Kerry have already beaten the Leesiders in this year’s Munster championship but to capture the silverware on offer, they must win again, and this time on Cork soil.

After six minutes of Saturday’s tie, Kerry and Clare were level at 1-1 apiece as Laura Rogers and Niamh O’Dea exchanged early goals. But quickfire goals from Rogers and Margaret Fitzgerald put Kerry firmly in the driving seat and they led by 3-2 to 1-2 after ten minutes, and by 5-11 to 1-3 at half-time. Clare were no match for a rampant Kerry as an administrative mix-up saw a number of their players book holidays. And John Burke’s charges were outclassed by a ruthless Kerry, who inflicted a massive 36-point defeat on the visitors. Patrice Dennehy and Louise Galvin added further goals before the break and there was no let-up in the second half as Louise Ní Mhuircheartaigh, Deirdre Corridan and Fitzgerald netted.

Next weekend sees all four provincial finals down for decision. In Ulster, Monaghan will meet Tyrone next Sunday at Celtic Park, with Mayo and Galway battling it out in the Connacht decider at Tuam Stadium. On Saturday, Cork and Kerry collide in another Munster final and in Leinster, Meath will face Dublin at Dr. Cullen Park in Carlow.


Senior Championship

Saturday 6th 2013

Kerry v Clare

Venue: Scartaglin

Time 5pm

Ref: Mike O Keeffe (Cork)

Match Preview

Clare face a tough assignment away to Kerry on Saturday, having already suffered a 0-20 to 0-8 defeat to cork in Shannon they must beat Kerry to give themselves a chance of at least a play off place. Kerry will come into this game on a high having already defeated the All Ireland champions Corks. A feat which is their first in Munster for 10 years.

John Burke spoke about the positives of his team following their game against Cork, that they were still very much in contention until the 47th minute, where they trailed Cork 0-13 to 0-8. He was also pleased that they gave up no goal chance to Cork however he will have concerns that his team only kicked 1 wide such was the lack of passion his forwards enjoyed. Niamh Keane and Louise Henchy should start at midfield, Niamh O’Dea as always be a danger on the 40 which inside the Considine sisters Ailish and Eimear are well capable of converting if given the ball. However for Clare it will be their defence that will come under most pressure and Fiona Lafferty, Lorraine Kelly and Marie Considine can expect a long hour’s work.

Kerry on the other hand have not overplayed their win against Cork. Their manager William O’Sullivan has played up the importance of this game against Clare as Kerry’s most important one under his 4 year reign. Kerry will look to their attack unlock Clare and Louise No Mhuirteartaigh, Sarah Houlihan, Laura Rogers and Patrice Dennehy will all be used to good effect. Bernie Breen and Emma Sherword should provide a platform for Kerry while Aislinn Desmond will anchor the Kerry defence at Full Back

Match Preview

TG4 Ladies Munster SFC preview

By Jackie Cahill

CLARE manager John Burke is travelling with a depleted squad for Saturday’s crunch TG4 Munster ladies senior football championship clash with Kerry. An administrative error has robbed Burke of key personnel for the visit to Scartaglin (5.0).

Kerry were already raging hot favourites following their stunning victory over Cork and the Banner County’s task has now become a virtual mission impossible.

Former Dublin manager Burke, a native of Ennis, revealed that some of his players took holidays when they read that the Kerry game was fixed for Saturday week, July 13.

But this information was erroneous as the provincial decider is down for decision in Castletownroche on that date.

Burke confirmed: “They’re not back until the Saturday night. We looked for a postponement but Kerry said no. We’re travelling with 25 players and 15 of them are minors. We said that we would travel down to Kerry on the Sunday morning and play them before the men’s Munster final but they weren’t having any of it so the game goes ahead on Saturday night.”

Burke admitted: “I picked up on it three weeks ago. The error was corrected but we’ve been left in the middle of the ocean.”

Former Allstar nominee Louise Henchy, Sue Higgins, Emma O’Driscoll, Fiona Lafferty and Lorraine Kelly will not feature for Clare as a result.

Burke said: “That’s our gel – that’s our team. They’re all on holidays and had it booked. We have to look at our own administrators in Clare and at home and how things are managed here. But there’s no point in pointing the finger – I should have been more proactive about the situation.

“I didn’t see it and that’s the situation we’re now in.”

Kerry are hotly-tipped to beat Clare, who have already lost to Cork, and that would set up another provincial final showdown with the Rebelettes.

Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship – Cork 5-18 Dublin 0-4

Cork defeated Dublin by 5-18 to 0-4 in the Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship on Saturday at Pairc Ui Rinn.

Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship – Offaly 1-15 Tipperary 0-10

Offaly defeated Tipperary by 1-15 to 0-10 in the Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship on Saturday July 6th at Banagher.

Team News

The Offaly Camogie team in full is –

1. Eleanor Clendennen (Kinnitty)

2. Fiona Stephens (Drumcullen)

3. Triona McDonald (Kilcormac/Killoughy)

4. Marian Crean (Shinrone)

5. Linda Sullivan (St Rynaghs)

6. Michaela Morkan (Shinrone)

7. Sheila Sullivan (Birr)

8. Aoife Kelly (Lusmagh)

9. Siobhan Flannery (St Rynaghs)

10. Ann Marie Guinan (Drumcullen)

11. Lorraine Kenna (Kilcormac/Killoughy)

12. Debbie Flynn (Kilcormac /Killoughy)

13. Rachel Brennan (St Cillians)

14. Elaine Dermody (Drumcullen)

15. Tina Hannon (Naomh Bríd)

All-Ireland Senior Football Championship Qualifiers Round 2 – Galway 1-12 Waterford 0-14

Galway squeeze past brave Déise

Galway 1-12 Waterford 0-14

By John Fallon for the Irish Examiner newspaper

We should have known from the weather that something strange was about to happen in Pearse Stadium on Saturday. Throughout the country, people were basking in warm sunshine. But in Salthill it was chilly, wet and windy. It was in such a Dickensian setting that Galway’s championship hopes came so close to an inglorious end as Waterford came within a whisker of perhaps their greatest football win of the modern era.

It was dark and gloomy by the seaside and Galway’s football reflected that. They were 23 minutes of the second half without getting a score into the stiff wind. In that time, Waterford turned around a three-point interval deficit with six unanswered scores. Rightly, they started to dream big. They were three up with 15 minutes left and Galway, who won their first qualifier game in nine years the previous week, were struggling to get a foothold.

Another Waterford point would probably have sealed it. Instead, Sean Armstrong stopped the rot with a free 12 minutes from time, then sub Michael Martin reduced it to the minimum before Armstrong set up Michael Meehan for the decisive score, a goal six minutes from the end. “I am so proud of them,” said Waterford manager Niall Carew. “But we are devastated. We left it behind us. We were three points up midway through the second half and we had two other chances and missed them. You have to take those chances at this level and we rued them at the end. We are gutted. “We worked so hard since the Kerry game. I supposed people forgot we were right in the Kerry game for 40 minutes but we knew there were positives from that game and while we got a performance today, it wasn’t enough and I’m gutted for the lads,” said the Kildare native who took charge last December.

The last time Galway won successive qualifier games, they went the whole way and won the All-Ireland in 2001 but for long periods on Saturday it seemed that the latest chapter in their dismal back door exits was unfolding. “We are relieved. We got the result we wanted, we definitely didn’t get the performance we hoped for. We managed to get out by a point, we are happy with that, we are in the pot for the next day,” said Galway manager Alan Mulholland. “But we were up against the wall at the end. With about 15 minutes left, we were three points down and playing into a stiff breeze, so we battled hard, got 1-2 in the end and managed to squeeze it out.”

Paul Whyte was the key figure for Waterford. The 21-year old hit eight points, half of them from play, in a magnificent performance. His accuracy helped Waterford recover from a blistering start by the Tribesmen which saw Meehan shoot three points in the opening six minutes. Whyte led the comeback along with Andy Doyle and they were in with a fighting chance when they only trailed by 0-10 to 0-7 at the break, having pulled plenty of men back behind the ball and crowded their defence.

The constant mist and rain made conditions difficult for both sides but Waterford used wind advantage well after the restart with skipper Gary Hurney landing a brace of points as Whyte continued to torment the home defence. Waterford landed six points in a row before Armstrong finally got the home side’s first point of the half after 58 minutes after Paul Conroy got on top in the middle of the field for Galway. Sub Michael Martin reduced it to the minimum two minutes later before Armstrong had a chance to equalise but spotted Meehan free inside and the Caltra man blasted the ball to the net from close range.

It was a cruel blow for Waterford and while Whyte reduced the margin to a point with a 45, Galway kept possession in the dying moments. The final whistle was greeted with relief from the home following in the crowd of 2,345. By the time they got to their car radios, cold and wet, they were reminded that the rest of the country was struggling to deal with the sunshine. Farmers and fishermen pay a lot of heed to the weather. Perhaps footballers should do so too.

Scorers for Galway: M Meehan 1-5 (0-1f), P Conroy 0-4 (2f), S Armstrong 0-1 (f), D Cummins 0-1, M Martin 0-1.

Scorers for Waterford: P Whyte 0-8 (3f, 1 ’45), G Hurney 0-2, A Doyle 0-2, T Grey 0-1, B Wall 0-1.

GALWAY: M Breathnach; C Forde, F Hanley, J Duane; C Doherty, G O’Donnell, G Sice; P Conroy, G Higgins; J O’Brien; S Armstrong, M Farragher; D Cummins, M Meehan, M Hehir.

Subs for Galway: K Kelly for Forde (28), M Martin for Hehir (45), T Flynn for Higgins (49), S Denvir for Doherty (52), F O Curraion for O’Brien (60).

WATERFORD: S Enright; N Walsh, T O’Gorman, M O’Gorman; C O’Keeffe, S Briggs, C Phelan; T Prendergast, S Ahearne; T Grey, G Hurney, A Doyle; B Wall, P Whyte, L O Lionáin.

Subs for Waterford: R Ahearne for Wall (60), D Allen for Prendergast (68).

Referee: D Fahy (Longford).


Galway 1-12 Waterford 0-14

Report from the web site

A Michael Meehan goal six minutes from time rescued Galway from one of the shocks of the summer as they finally edged out Waterford at Pearse Stadium. Galway led by 0-10 to -7 having played with the wind but Waterford scored six points without reply after the restart to surge 0-13 to 0–7 in front with 15 minutes left. They still led by a point when Sean Armstrong set up Meehan for the only goal of the game to deny Waterford a famous win.

Waterford kept plenty of players behind the ball in the opening half when they were playing against the wind and Galway struggled to break them down. Galway had started promisingly with three points from Meehan in the opening six minutes, but they struggled to build on that promising start and only led by a goal at the interval. Waterford seized control after the restart and with man of the match Paul Whyte in superb form — he scored 0-08 in a magnificent display — they quickly reduced the deficit.

Four of his points from play and he leveled the sides after 46 minutes with his fourth effort. Whyte added two more in addition to one from captain Gary Hurney and Galway looked to be in serious trouble. They went 23 minutes of the second-half before they got their first score, a pointed free from Armstrong and then after Michael Martin reduced the margin to a point, Armstrong set Meehan up for the crucial score of the game and the Galway full-forward blasted to the net. Whyte landed a 45 to leave the minimum between them but Galway held on for victory in the end to book their place in the third round in two weeks.

Galway: M Breathnach; C Forde, F Hanley, J Duane; C Doherty, G O’Donnell, G Sice; P Conroy (0-04, 0-02f), G Higgins; J O’Brien; S Armstrong (0-01f), M Farragher; D Cummins (0-01), M Meehan (1-5, 0-01f, 0-01 ’45), M Hehir.

Subs: K Kelly for Forde (28 mins), M Martin for Hehir (45 mins), T Flynn for Higgins (49 mins), S Denvir for Doherty (52 mins), F O Curraion for O’Brien (60 mins)

Waterford: S Enright; N Walsh, T O’Gorman, M O’Gorman; C O’Keeffe, S Briggs, C Phelan; T Prendergast, S Ahearne; T Grey (0-1), G Hurney (0-02), A Doyle (0-02); B Wall, P Whyte (0-08 0-03f, 0-01 ’45), L O Lionáin.

Subs: R Ahearne (0-01) for Wall (60 mins), D Allen for Prendergast (68 mins).

Referee: D Fahy (Longford)


Team News

Waterford Team v Galway – All Ireland Qualifiers in Pearse Stadium, Galway at 2.30 on Saturday –

1. Stephen Enright Ballinacourty

2. Thomas O’Gorman Nire

3. Niall Walsh Kilrossanty

4. Conor Phelan Brickey Rangers

5. Tadhg Ó hUallacháin An Rinn

6. Shane Briggs Ballinacourty

7. Andy Doyle Stradbally

8. Shane Aherne Stradbally

9. Maurice O’Gorman Nire

10. Tommy Prendergast Kilrossanty

11. Tony Grey Stradbally

12. Liam Ó Lonáin An Rinn

13. Paul Whyte Kilrossanty

14. Gary Hurney Ballinacourty CAPTAIN

15. Robert Aherne Stradbally

Match Preview

It may not have captured many headlines last weekend, but Galway’s win over Tipperary was significant in that it was the county’s first win in the Qualifiers since 2004, finally bringing an end to a disastrous run of six straight defeats in the back door.

It may not have been pretty and they may have just about scraped over the line in the end, but Alan Mulholland’s side exorcised some of the demons from their Connacht quarter-final trimming by Galway and now have a clear path to Round 3, and perhaps beyond, if they can beat Waterford in Salthill on Saturday.

While Galway’s record in the Qualifiers is poor, Waterford have won just one qualifier game in the last 12 years, a 1-17 to 0-13 defeat of London in 2011, and their only game in the championship this year resulted in a 4-21 to 0-4 drubbing by Kerry in Munster.

Galway have made one change from the Tipperary game, with Johnny Duane, who missed the 1-12 to 0-11 win last Saturday through injury, coming back into the defence at corner back in place of Keith Kelly.

Waterford haven’t been in action since that defeat to Kerry on June 1, and that long lay-off may count against Niall Carew’s side, who struggled in Division IV of the Allianz League this year.