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'Real Buzz' For Clare Minor Hurlers As Their Summer Begins To Stretch

'Real Buzz' For Clare Minor Hurlers As Their Summer Begins To Stretch
By PJ Browne Updated
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Clare defeated Limerick by six points in the semi-final of the Electric Ireland Munster Minor Hurling Championship on Tuesday evening. It means that for the second year in a row, Clare will play in the provincial decider.

Limerick began the game well and held a four-point lead after 10 minutes, but thereafter, it was virtually all about Clare. Two goals either side of the break, both by Marc O'Brien, helped them stretch to an 11-point lead during the second half.

"I thought it was gone," Banner manager Brian O'Connell told Clare FM after the game about O'Brien's opportunistic first goal.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3udf1dLaae0

"I thought (Michael) Power hit the ball from a little bit far out, and the keeper, in fairness to him, made a good save, but Marc never gave up. It was a real quick instinct to knock it into the back of the net.

"It was crucial at the time, settled us before half-time. I thought we built on it, especially when you're playing into a stiff enough breeze in the second-half."

During the second half, Limerick began to reel Clare in and closed the gap to just three points with just over three minutes of normal time to play. However, Clare pulled away once again to win 2-21 to 2-15.

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17 June 2022; Clare manager Brian O'Connell before the Electric Ireland GAA Hurling All-Ireland Minor Championship Semi-Final match between Offaly and Clare at FBD Semple Stadium in Thurles, Tipperary. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

"The subs that came on, and the fresh legs - Harry Doherty coming on and catching two great balls out of the sky - took pressure off us at the time," O'Connell said about the final quarter of the game.

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"The work we asked the half-forwards and midfielders to do is tough going, you need fresh legs coming in to keep that momentum."

Clare emerged from the match without any injury worries, according to O'Connell. On May 9th, they will play a Cork side in the final who will be looking for some revenge. In last month's group stage game, Clare inflicted a five-point defeat on the young Rebels. No matter the result of the Munster final, Clare are guaranteed another game. All four provincial finalists from Leinster and Munster qualify for this year's All-Ireland semi-finals.

"I think everyone came out of that unscathed," said O'Connell.

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"There might be tired legs but I don't think there were any injuries. This week will be about recovery. Last week wasn't great for us, we had a lot of lads sick with strep throat and flu. Hopefully, that's gone out of the camp and we'll have a full bill of health.

"There's no denying it. It is a motivation if you get beaten by a team, you want to set the record straight or get one up on them.

"We're under no illusions about how good Cork are. They were missing one of their sharpshooters on the night they played us, and he'll be back in the squad.

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"We're looking forward to another Munster final. I think the lads enjoy the setup, enjoy training - all 29 of them on the squad. The longer it can go on into the dry weather and the long evenings, it's a real buzz for all of us."

See Also: Clare Star John Conlon Reveals He Left Brother's Wedding To Lead Team To Limerick Win

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Electric Ireland is a proud sponsor of the Camogie All-Ireland Minor Championships and the GAA All-Ireland Minor Championships.

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