May the best horse jump the ditch, says Davy Fitz after defeat of Galway

It’s Limerick next up with a place in the All-Ireland decider on the line.

Clare manager Davy Fitzgerald with Galway manager Anthony Cunningham after the game.
Clare manager Davy Fitzgerald with Galway manager Anthony Cunningham after the game.
Image: INPHO/Morgan Treacy

DAVY FITZGERALD SAYS his young Clare side have exceeded expectations by reaching the semi-finals of the All-Ireland SHC.

The Banner saw off an off-form Galway on a scoreline of 1-23 to 2-14 at Thurles this afternoon and will face another neighbouring county, Limerick, in the last four next time out.

“I’m delighted for the guys, we have a fantastic bunch there and they’ve exceeded my expectations,” Fitzgerald said on RTÉ TV afterwards.

“They work very hard. I thought we probably made it a bit hard on ourselves, we gave away two sloppy goals. You won’t get away with that against Limerick but hats off to the young guys; any time Galway came back at us we upped a gear. I’m just very proud of the way they played today.

He continued: “That’s what defines character you know. Even though there is probably nine of that team under 22, they have bundles of character. We have a lot of stuff to work on, we won’t get carried away but I am very proud of them.”

Despite a seemingly fractious relationship with his counterpart on the Galway bench, Anthony Cunningham, Fitzgerald leapt to his defence in the wake of the Tribe’s exit.

“That’s rubbish as far as I’m concerned,” he said when asked about getting his tactics spot on by Joanne Cantwell. “I think Anthony Cunningham is a great manager. He’s going to get tough stick in Galway. He got them to an All-Ireland final last year, he deserves the time, I think he’s a very good manager.

“Gameplan right? Maybe things worked for us today, I don’t know if the gameplan is right. Trust me, against Cork I got slaughtered. Did that make me a bad manager? I’d like to think not. I don’t think it makes Anthony a bad manager. So , things worked out for us today so they did. Let’s not read too much into that stuff, we got the breaks and things went right for us today.

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“We’ll enjoy today,” he added. “We’ve one step to think of, I have a lot of respect for Limerick, I had five or six of the lads in LIT with me and it’s going to be a big battle. They will look forward to playing us, I’ve no doubt about that, and we’ll look forward to playing them. There’s going to be one from down our side in an All-Ireland final.

“May the best horse jump the ditch and we’ll see what happens,” he added.

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