Thursday 14 December 2017

Donnellan's last-gasp point sends Clare through to semi-final

Clare 2-13
Limerick 1-15
Waterford Crystal Cup (SH) Quarter-Final Replay

This was another mouth-watering rehearsal for when these two sides meet in their opening league game in a few weeks as Clare snatched victory to set up a meeting with Waterford on Sunday.

This was an absorbing contest which went down to the wire and it was a great strike by midfielder Bryan Donnellan in added-time which gave the Banner their semi-final spot.

But Limerick's new manager John Allen will bemoan two glorious missed chances seconds before Donnellan's winner and Grame Mulcahy will wonder how he missed from straight in front of the uprights to snatch a win for Limerick.

The game, at one stage, seemed like a shoot-out between Limerick's Declan Hannon and Padraig Hickey of Clare, with Hannon eventually finishing with 0-8 and Hickey 0-6.

The sides were level four times in a bright first half which ended with Clare in front 2-6 to 0-10.

Clare made the better start and Tony Carmody followed his second- minute point by grabbing a goal two minutes later. Limerick settled and Mikey Ryan had their first point after five minutes. Then Hannon sparked a revival for the losers with four points without reply. And it was the same player who nudged Limerick in front after 15 minutes.

They were level again after 25 minutes before Ross Horan capitalised on a big gap in the Limerick defence and he blasted to the net. Donal O'Grady and Hannon had the first two second-half points for Limerick and it was all square again after 54 and 68 minutes as extra-time again loomed. But Limerick's misses and Donnellan's late strike edged it for Clare.

SCORERS -- Clare: P Hickey 0-6 (5f), T Carmody 1-1, R Horan 1-0, B Donnellan, J Conlon 0-2 each, C Galvin, J McInerney 0-1 each. Limerick: D Hannon 0-8 (3f, 2 '65s'), B Geary 1-0, N Maher, M Ryan 0-2 each, G mulcahy, D Moloney, M Carmody 0-1 each.

Clare -- D Fahy; S Morey, C Dillon, M Early; C O'Doherty, J McInerney, S O'Halloran; C Galvin, B Donnellan; D Russell, J Conlon, J Clancy; T Carmody, R Horan, P Hickey. Subs: P Duggan for Russell (38), D Cunningham for Hickey (61), P Donnellan for O'Doherty (64), F Lynch for Horan (68).

Limerick -- A Murphy; S Walsh, T Condon, S O'Neill; B O'Sullivan, G O'Mahony, D Moloney; J Ryan, T Ryan; D Hannon, N Maher, G Mulcahy; M Carmody, N Moran, M Ryan Subs: B Geary for Moran (22), M Carr for O'Sullivan (ht), D O'Grady for T Ryan (h-t), E Gleeson for Geary (54), K Loftus for Maher (67).

Ref -- D Kirwan (Cork).

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