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Drama in Ennis as penalty shootout sends Limerick into Munster football semi-finals

90 minutes of action could not separate Clare or Limerick, so for the first time in the Munster SFC, penalties determined the winner.

Limerick's Brian Donovan and James Naughton celebrate after Limerick win the penalty shootout.
Limerick's Brian Donovan and James Naughton celebrate after Limerick win the penalty shootout.
Image: Tom Maher/INPHO

Limerick 2-16

Clare 1-19

Limerick win 4-1 on penalties

NINETY MINUTES OF ACTION could not separate Clare or Limerick, so for the first time in the Munster senior football championship, penalties determined the winner with the Treaty County advancing to the provincial last four for the second year in-a-row.

It took extra time and penalties to find a winner where for large spells of the game, indeed the majority of the contest, it looked like Limerick were en route to recording their first championship win over Clare in six meetings and thanks to their clinical ability from the spot kicks, they duly did that.

With four converted penalties from four, Iain Corbett, Robbie Bourke, Brian Donovan and James Naughton all dispatched impressive efforts past Clare netminder Tristan O’Callaghan who was making his championship debut after regular custodian Stephen Ryan sustained an injury during training this week. Cian O’Dea and Conor Jordan saw their efforts sail over and wide respectively with Joe McGann’s converted penalty coming too late to alter the result.

james-naughton-scores-his-penalty-to-win-the-shootout Naughton scored the winning penalty. Source: Tom Maher/INPHO

Leading by three points at half-time (1-9 to 1-6), the Treaty County would have held a much more comfortable lead had it not been for David Tubridy’s penalty on 33 minutes, arising following a foul on Gavin Cooney. Full-back Brian Fanning had travelled the length of the field before tucking the ball into the back of the Banner net on 28 minutes to put Limerick firmly in the driving seat and culminated in a run of 1-4 without reply.

While the hosts dominated the bulk of second-half possession, they failed to make it count on the scoreboard amassing six wides in this period and spurning a very scoreable goal chance from Gavin Cooney. Fortunately for them, their backs limited Limerick to just four points in the second half, one of which came from play as Josh Ryan’s double plus a Robbie Bourke free accompanied Peter Nash’s effort from play.

Jamie Malone looked to have stolen the result for Clare on 74 minutes when debutant Brendy Rouine teed him up, but in the resulting long passage of play, Limerick earned a free which substitute Robbie Bourke made no mistake with to send the tie to extra time.

brian-fanning-makes-a-break-past-gavin-cooney Limerick's Brian Fanning makes a break past Gavin Cooney of Clare. Source: Tom Maher/INPHO

For the 2,980 spectators in Ennis, the drama was only to ratchet up, Eoin Cleary kicked Clare into a two-point advantage on the restart, he added another shortly after but it was sandwiched between 1-1 from Robbie Bourke who certainly made his mark upon his introduction. Peter Nash kicked the solitary second half of extra time score for the Treaty County with Brendy Rouine raising a white flag before Clare captain Eoin Cleary nailed a highly-pressurised free to send the tie to penalties.

It is the latest feather in the cap of a remarkable season for Billy Lee’s Limerick who have already secured their place in Division 2 of the Allianz National Football League for next season. Brian Donovan, Brian Fanning, Iain Corbett and Robbie Bourke were most impressive for the winners, who face Tipperary next.

A journey into the qualifiers awaits Colm Collins’ Clare who will be very disappointed with the outcome; both the manner of the defeat and aspects of their display during the 90 or so minutes. Ciaran Russell, Darren O’Neill, Aaron Griffin, Brendy Rouine and Cillian Brennan, up until his retirement due to injury, were best for the Banner.

the-game-goes-to-penalties The scoreboard before the shootout. Source: Tom Maher/INPHO

Scorers for Limerick: J Ryan (0-06 5f), R Bourke (1-02 2f), B Fanning (1-00), C Fahy (0-02), P Nash (0-02), H Bourke (0-01), D Treacy (0-01), A Enright (0-01), B Donovan (0-01).

Scorers for Clare: E Cleary (0-06 4f), A Griffin (0-04), D Tubridy (1-01 1’Pen), D O’Neill (0-02), B Rouine (0-02 1f), P Lillis (0-01), E McMahon (0-01), G Cooney (0-01), J Malone (0-01)

Limerick

1: Donal Ó Sullivan Capt Monaleen

4: Michael Donovan (Galbally), 3: Brian Fanning (Pallasgreen), 2: Sean O’Dea (Kilteely/Dromkeen)

5: Cian Sheehan (Newcastlewest), 6: Iain Corbett (Newcastlewest), 7: Paul Maher (Adare)

8: Darragh Treacy (St Kierans), 9: Cillian Fahy (Dromcollogher/Broadford)

10: Adrian Enright (Fr.Caseys), 11: Brian Donovan (Monaleen), 12: James Naughton (St Senans)

15: Hugh Bourke (Adare), 14: Josh Ryan (Oola), 13: Peter Nash (Kildimo/Pallaskenry)

Subs:

16: Aaron O’Sullivan (Pallasgreen)

17: Jim Liston (Gerald Griffins) for M Donovan (55)

25: Diarmuid Kelly (Newcastlewest) for Enright (58)

26: Robbie Bourke (Adare) for Ryan (64)

20: Gordon Brown (Na Piarsaigh) for Maher (64)

22: Tommy Griffin (Gerald Griffins) for B Donovan (68)

24: Killian Ryan (Mungret/St Pauls) for Kelly (FT)

11: Brian Donovan for H Bourke (73)

19: Colm McSweeney (Gerald Griffins) for Sheehan (77)

Clare

16: Tristan O’Callaghan (St Breckans)

4: Cillian Rouine (Ennistymon), 3: Cillian Brennan (Clondegad), 2: Manus Doherty (Éire Óg)

7: Eoghan Collins (Ballyhaunis), 9: Ciarán Russell (Éire Óg), 6: Cian O’Dea (Kilfenora)

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8: Darren O’Neill (Éire Óg), 5: Jamie Malone (Corofin)

12: Emmet McMahon (Kildysart), 11: Eoin Cleary (St Joseph’s Miltown), 10: Pearse Lillis (Cooraclare)

14: David Tubridy (Doonbeg), 13: Gavin Cooney (Éire Óg), 15: Aaron Griffin (Lissycasey)

Subs:

25: Daniel Walsh (Kilmurry Ibrickane) for E Collins (55)

24: Brendy Rouine (Ennistymon) for Tubridy (56)

19: Ciaran Downes (Kilmihil) for Lillis (64)

17: Pádraic Collins (Cratloe) for McMahon (66)

20: Conor Jordan (Austin Stacks) for P Collins (FT)

21: Darragh McDonagh (St Joseph’s Miltown) for Doherty (78)

23: Ciaran Morrissey (Kilmurry Ibrickane) for Brennan (80)

26: Joe McGann (St Breckans) for Cooney (80)

Referee: Conor Lane (Cork).

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Paraic McMahon

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