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'It's Going To Create Such Massive Memories For These Lads For Years To Come'

'It's Going To Create Such Massive Memories For These Lads For Years To Come'
By Joshua Bell Curran Updated
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Clare were crowned Electric Ireland All-Ireland minor hurling champions last week as they strode to a five-point victory over a well-fancied Galway team in Semple Stadium. As the minor hurlers once again brought silverware back to Ennis, the welcomes were rapturous with Brian O'Connell's homecoming speech the epitome of what it means to win an All-Ireland.

4 June 2023; Clare captain Eoghan Gunning lifts the cup after the Electric Ireland GAA Hurling All-Ireland Minor Championship Final match between Clare and Galway at FBD Semple Stadium in Thurles, Tipperary. Photo by Michael P Ryan/Sportsfile

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Speaking to an explosive Cusack Park after Clare's win last Sunday, manager Brian O'Connell told the crowds just how impactful the support for his side was. From bonfires on the bus route to laps of honour with folks lining the roads and pipers escorting the team, The Clare Minor hurlers must have felt like kings returning.

We we stopped at Broadford, Eoghan's [Gunning, team captain] club on the way over and it was really special just to see people on the side of the road as we came in and there's a bonfire that was probably lit half an hour early it was nearly quenched by the time we got there!
Then when we came from Broadford, through Tulla and obviously over to here just to see the people with their flags and their children young and old on the side of the road it was it was massive for us and it's going to create such massive memories for us for years to come and for these lads.
I'd just like to thank everybody for that and thank all of you that are here right now and for making this such a special occasion for us and to the pipers that brought us over here we did a lap of the lap of Ennis, pretty much and it's such a special occasion I don't think we should underestimate how important it is.
Gunning himself spoke to us about O'Connell's huge confidence in the team, and how he was certain they'd win an All-Ireland.
While the lads were received in Ennis like true All-Ireland heroes and the support they received hopefully had an untold impact on them, O'Connell was determined that this was not the end for Clare but rather the beginning of a new age of winning in the Banner County.
Anyone that I've talked to I've tried to say that hopefully this isn't another big long gap before there's another Munster or All-Ireland in Clare, I think this is going to be the start of something and a lot of that has to do with all those people that are working behind the scenes.
The win was Clare's first All-Ireland minor hurling title in 26 years with their last win coming in 1997, the same year that Clare took home Liam McCarthy. Since then they've managed it just once in 2013 but people in the Banner will now be hoping that history repeats itself and Clare will manage the double once again.



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