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Dublin: 3 °C Sunday 24 March, 2019


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Good afternoon and welcome along to our live coverage of the 2018 Munster senior hurling championship final between Cork and Clare from Semple Stadium.

It has been a thrilling championship to date and John Meyler’s Rebels are bidding to defend the crown they won last year, while Clare are seeking revenge for defeat in the decider 12 months ago.

The atmosphere is building in Thurles on this sunny Sunday afternoon, and we’re set for a cracker. The action gets underway at 2pm.

A Clare fan ahead of the game Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Joe Cole Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Fans on their way to Semple Stadium Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Alannah O'Brien Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

TEAM NEWS: Let’s take a check on the line ups for this afternoon’s clash.

John Meyler has named an unchanged side for today’s decider, as the Rebels look to retain the Munster title for the first time since 2006.

Clare — bidding for their first provincial crown since Ger Loughnane steered them to the title in 1998 — are also unchanged, with joint managers Gerry O’Connor and Donal Moloney showing faith in the XV which saw off Limerick a fortnight ago.

David Reidy is available to start at wing-forward after his controversial red card for an off-the-ball incident against Limerick was rescinded on appeal.


1. Donal Tuohy (Crusheen)

2. Patrick O’Connor (Tubber – captain)
3. David McInerney (Tulla)
4. Jack Browne (Ballyea)

5. Seadna Morey (Sixmilebridge)
6. Conor Cleary (St Joseph’s Miltown Malbay)
7. Jamie Shanahan (Sixmilebridge)

8. Colm Galvin (Clonlara)
9. Cathal Malone (Sixmilebridge)

10. Peter Duggan (Clooney-Quin)
11. Tony Kelly (Ballyea)
12. David Reidy (Éire Óg)

13. Podge Collins 
14. John Conlon (Clonlara)
15. Shane O’Donnell (Éire Óg)


1. Anthony Nash (Kanturk)

2. Sean O’Donoghue (Inniscarra)
3. Damien Cahalane (St Finbarr’s)
4. Colm Spillane (Castlelyons)

5. Christopher Joyce (Na Piarsaigh)
6. Eoin Cadogan (Douglas)
7. Mark Coleman (Blarney)

8. Darragh Fitzgibbon (Charleville)
9. Bill Cooper (Youghal)

10. Daniel Kearney (Sarsfields)
11. Conor Lehane (Midleton)
12. Seamus Harnedy (St Ita’s – captain)

13. Luke Meade (Newcestown)
14. Shane Kingston (Douglas)
15. Patrick Horgan (Glen Rovers)

And here are the subs as named by the respective managers earlier in the week.


16. Andrew Fahy (Whitegate)
17. Rory Hayes (Wolfe Tones)
18. Jason McCarthy (Inagh-Kilnamona)
19. David Fitzgerald (Inagh-Kilnamona)
20. Michael O’Malley (Kilmaley)
21. Ryan Taylor (Clooney-Quin)
22. Niall Deasy (Ballyea)
23. Ian Galvin (Clonlara)
24. Michael O’Neill (Kilmaley)
25. Conor McGrath (Cratloe)
26. Darragh Corry (Tulla)

John Meyler arrives Cork manager John Meyler arriving earlier. Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO


16. Patrick Collins (Ballinhassig)
17. David Griffin (Carrigaline)
18. Conor O’Sullivan (Sarsfields)
19. Tim O’Mahony (Newtownshandrum)
20. Lorcan McLoughlin (Kanturk)
21. Brian Lawton (Castlemartyr)
22. Michael Cahalane (Bandon)
23. Dean Brosnan (Glen Rovers)
24. Robbie O’Flynn (Erins Own)
25. Jack O’Connor (Sarsfields)
26. Rob O’Shea (Carrigaline)

Which way do you see this one going?

Poll Results:

Cork (475)
Clare (258)
Draw (30)

The teams have completed their warm-ups and are embarking on the pre-match parade. Cracking atmosphere inside a sold-out Semple Stadium.


1 mins — Clare 0-1 Cork 0-0

The game has started at a million miles an hour and it’s first blood to Clare, who win a free through Podge Collins and Duggan converts.


4 mins — Clare 0-1 Cork 0-0

A strong breeze is blowing across the ground and Jamie Shanahan’s long-range effort sails just wide of the posts.


5 mins — Clare 0-1 Cork 0-1

Cork are up and running and it’s their captain Seamus Harnedy who leads from the front with a brilliant score.


10 mins — Clare 0-3 Cork 0-3

Frenetic stuff in Thurles. John Conlon restores Clare’s early lead but then the Banner cough up a cheap score of their own, with Conor Cleary’s poor pass out snapped up by Luke Meade, who doesn’t need a second invitation to level proceedings.

Then, Peter Duggan shows his strength on the right to manufacture a yard of space for himself and he arrows a score over, before Daniel Kearney opens his account for the day at the other end.


12 mins — Clare 0-5 Cork 0-3

It’s living up to its billing, anyway. What a start to this game, and John Conlon is causing all sorts of problems for the Cork defence as he fires over back-to-back points to extend Clare’s lead to two points.


13 mins — Clare 0-5 Cork 0-4

Shane Kingston charges through on goal and is hauled down by Jack Browne, allowing Pat Horgan to pop it over for a fourth Cork point.


16 mins — Clare 0-5 Cork 0-5

The defending champions are level again thanks to a sublime score from Patrick Horgan, who turned and struck it sweetly, using the wind to bring it back between the posts.

Flag 17Mins

17 mins — GOAL! Clare 1-6 Cork 0-5

The Banner strike! Tony Kelly runs at the Cork defence and his handpass is perfectly timed and weighted to allow David Reidy latch onto it and clinically fire low past Anthony Nash.

Minutes later, Conlon tacks on another point from the sideline.


20 mins — Clare 1-6 Cork 0-6

The Cork defence is struggling to deal with the firepower in the Clare forward line and John Meyler is looking concerned on the sideline. His side win a free after David McInerney commits the foul — for which he’s booked for — and Horgan converts the free.


21 mins — Clare 1-7 Cork 0-6

Cork are leaking points though. Cooper fouls Reidy and Duggan makes no mistake from the free, to restore Clare’s four-point lead.


22 mins — Clare 1-8 Cork 0-7

Colm Spillane goes into the book for a foul on John Conlon, with Duggan converting the free, and then Conor Clearly follows suit at the other end for a high tackle on Harnedy. Horgan fires it over the bar.


27 mins — Clare 1-8 Cork 0-8

Clare have been utterly clinical so far but Cork have been able to stay in touch with Horgan adding another free to his tally, with the Rebels now just three behind.


30 mins — Clare 1-9 Cork 0-8

Podge Collins bears down on goal after embarking on another powerful run through midfield, but his stopped in his tracks by Eoin Cadogan. The referee awards a free and Duggan steps up to the mark again.


32 mins — Clare 1-9 Cork 0-9

It’s end-to-end, and Patrick Horgan is keeping Cork in touch with another classy score.

Flag 33Mins

32 mins — GOAL! Clare 2-11 Cork 0-9

Moments after David Reidy latches onto a loose ball underneath the main stand and fires it over the bar, Clare strike for their second goal just before the break. Goalkeeper Donal Tuohy launches a long free into the Cork box, and Duggan gets the final touch past Nash.


35 mins — Clare 2-11 Cork 0-9

My word, John Conlon is on fire. He nails his fifth point of the day as Clare pull clear.

Flag 36Mins

35 + 1 mins — GOAL! Clare 2-11 Cork 1-9

What an end to the first half! Nash pucks it long and Harnedy wins it before setting Luke Meade free, who finishes brilliantly past the advancing Tuohy. Game on!

Flag 36Mins

Half-time! Clare 2-11 Cork 1-10

A thrilling half of hurling and it ended with Mark Coleman scoring an incredible point from 65 metres out, to ensure Cork go into the break with all the momentum. Four points separate the sides in Thurles.


Peter Duggan and John Conlon with Eoin Cadogan Source: James Crombie/INPHO

Seamus Harnedy leads the team out Source: Morgan Treacy/INPHO

Colm Spillane and John Conlon Source: James Crombie/INPHO


A closer look at Clare’s second goal, which came courtesy of Peter Duggan.

Flag 36Mins

We’re back underway in Thurles!

That was an extended break — 19 minutes in total — with Clare out on the pitch waiting for John Meyler’s Cork to emerge for a good four minutes. Anyway, no changes to either side and we’re up and running again.


38 mins — Clare 2-11 Cork 1-12

Chance! Cork have started the second half brightly and Harnedy has a sight of goal but his effort is saved by Donal Tuohy.

The Rebels then register two quick scores through Darragh Fitzgibbon and Patrick Horgan to cut the deficit to just two points.


39 mins — Clare 2-11 Cork 1-13

Uncharacteristic miss from Podge Collins, before Patrick Horgan converts a 65. The momentum is all with Cork now.


43 mins — Clare 2-12 Cork 1-14

A much-needed score for Clare comes after Colm Spillane fouled Conlon and Duggan converted. At the other end, Conor Lehane is up and running with his first of the day. Breathless stuff.


44 mins — Clare 2-12 Cork 1-15

Horgan battles brilliantly on this near touchline to win a free, much to the delight of the Cork bench. He lands the free himself with another sweet strike and we’re level in Thurles!


46 mins — Clare 2-12 Cork 1-16

Cork are showing why they’re Munster champions — but Horgan misses the chance to put the Rebels into the lead from a free after a foul on Meade.


48 mins — Clare 2-12 Cork 1-16

Duggan sends a free wide at one end, and down the other Cork take full advantage to hit the front. Superb score from captain Harnedy, who came in-field to create the chance for himself.


50 mins — Clare 2-13 Cork 1-17

Cork are motoring now. Darragh Fitzgibbon uses the wind perfectly to bring a long-range effort back between the posts.

David Reidy responds for the Banner by flicking the ball over the bar after the Rebels rearguard had done brilliantly to close down the initial space in front of Podge Collins.

Meanwhile, Clare have brought Jason McCarthy on for Cathal Malone.


54 mins — Clare 2-13 Cork 1-18

Cork tack on their eighth point of this second period and it’s that man Horgan again. They lead by two.


56 mins — Clare 2-14 Cork 1-18

Cork shoot themselves in the foot there by giving possession straight back to Clare and Colm Galvin accepts the invitation to reduce the deficit to a single score.

The Banner have just introduced Conor McGrath for Shane O’Donnell, and he’s involved straight away but is off target from range.


57 mins — Clare 2-15 Cork 1-18

We’re level again! McGrath makes no mistake this time and it’s all-square at 21-21 in Thurles.

Flag 57Mins

58 mins — GOAL! Clare 2-16 Cork 2-18

The Rebels roar! The Clare defence is caught napping and it’s Harnedy who powers through and fires low into the net. A huge moment with 12 minutes remaining.


60 mins — Clare 2-16 Cork 2-19

Podge Collins finds an instant reply for Clare but then Kearney is on the mark again for Cork.

Meyler has made his first change with Shane Kingston making way for Robbie O’Flynn. 10 minutes left in Thurles. Three-point game.


61 mins — Clare 2-16 Cork 2-20

Cork are looking strong heading into the final few minutes as Nash sends it long, Harnedy rises highest to gather and then points in sublime fashion. They lead by four.


63 mins — Clare 2-17 Cork 2-20

Changes on both sides. David Reidy makes way for Darragh Corry on the Clare side, while Mikey Cahalane replaces Luke Meade for Cork.

When play resumes, Tony Kelly has a sight of goal but is brilliantly closed down by Mark Coleman, before the Clare forward retains possession and flicks it over for a point.


66 mins — Clare 2-18 Cork 2-21

Coleman follows up his defensive heroics with a sensational point from inside his own half. The lead is three points again, as Meyler brings Lorcan McLoughlin into the action for Daniel Kearney.


67 mins — Clare 2-19 Cork 2-22

Podge Collins is doing his level best to keep Clare in this contest as he charges down on goal but is closed down, and has to settle for the point. Points are flowing at both ends now.


68 mins — Clare 2-19 Cork 2-23

Frustration for Clare as they cough up another free and you know what that means when Horgan is around. Five points in it.


70 mins — Clare 2-19 Cork 2-24

Into three minutes of added time.

Flag 72Mins

72 mins — GOAL! Clare 3-19 Cork 2-24

A lifeline for Clare? Ian Galvin fires it home from a tight angle. Two points in it, but time is against the Banner.

Flag 73Mins

Full-time! Clare 3-19 Cork 2-24

Cork are the 2018 Munster hurling champions!

About the author:

Ryan Bailey


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