Monday 23 October 2017

Game At A Glance

MAN OF THE MATCH

Declan Rooney

Darren Strong (Laois)

Laois wing-back Darren Strong kicked three points from play in a standout performance. He got his side off the mark with an early point and added two more after the break. Breaking from deep, the two Laois wing-backs are serious weapons.

TURNING POINT

After a desperate first half-hour in front of goal, Laois suddenly clicked into gear before the break. Ten early wides were followed by 2-10 without reply, but early in that run, John O'Loughlin's goal pushed Laois into the lead for the first time since the second minute.

TALKING POINT

Will Mick O'Dwyer be back to boost football in another county or is this the end of the great Kerryman? After announcing that he won't be back with Clare, we've likely seen the final chapter in a great GAA story.

MAGIC MOMENT

With Clare on the ropes, Laois corner-forward David Conway delivered the knock-out blow in the 39th minute. A point looked the likely return for a jinking run from the attacker, but he finished precisely into the top right-hand corner of the net from an acute angle.

REF WATCH

Cork's Conor Lane came down hard on any infringements. He consistently punished teams for failing to retreat the required distance from the place of the foul, but he could take it a little easier with the whistle. Why blow once when five or six times will suffice...?

WHAT THEY SAID

Mick O'Dwyer (Clare manager):

"They'll go back to their clubs now so it's club football for them for the rest of the summer. I wish them well in the future."

Justin McNulty (Laois manager):

"I need to look at the stats and the video to see where we scored and missed from, but in the end up, we did kick some nice scores. But to be fair, Clare kicked a few good ones as well."

MATCH STATISTICS

Wides:

Clare 8 (1 first half)

Laois 12 (10)

Frees:

Clare 22 (12)

Laois 16 (8)

Yellow cards:

Clare 2 (G Quinlan 36, R Donnelly 63)

Laois 3 (C Meredith 8, P McMahon 30, P Begley 41)

WHAT'S NEXT?

Laois move on to Round 3 of the qualifiers; Clare go home.

Irish Independent

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