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O'Donnell gets Banner flying high again as U-21s seal Munster treble

Published 31/07/2014 | 02:30

Clare's Cathal O'Connell (left) and Shane O'Donnell celebrate after their Munster U-21 HC final victory over Cork in Ennis. Photo: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE
Clare's Cathal O'Connell (left) and Shane O'Donnell celebrate after their Munster U-21 HC final victory over Cork in Ennis. Photo: Stephen McCarthy / SPORTSFILE

Clare may have relinquished their hold of the Liam MacCarthy Cup, but having completed a Munster hurling U-21 three-in-a-row last night, Shane O'Donnell and his team-mates look set to rescue the Banner's season.

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O'Donnell, unable to play with the seniors this summer due to injury, showed his county's supporters what they were missing – helping himself to a first-half goal as Clare comfortably brushed aside the challenge of Cork.

The Banner youngsters raced out of the starting blocks in Ennis to blitz their opponents and the game was effectively over at half-time when they led by 1-15 to 0-5.

Cork tried to rally in the second half and while Anthony Spillane did find the net for them, Clare stepped up a gear to record a 1-28 to 1-13 victory.

Man of the match Colm Galvin was outstanding throughout and the Clare midfielder admitted afterwards that winning another All-Ireland U-21 would was the team's only goal.

"It was nice to win, but it's important we keep it going now," he said. "I don't know who we play in the All-Ireland semi-finals, but we will be expecting a tough game."

The reigning champions, in fact, will now face Antrim – the county they beat by 22 points in last year's decider – while Wexford will lock horns with Galway in the other semi-final.

Irish Independent

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