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Munster Senior Championship
Limerick 0-10 v 0-06 Clare
When the ball is thrown in in Championship fare it’s a whole new ball game. Clare will have learnt this lesson the hard way this weekend. Clare had gotten the better of their neighbours in recent games but when it came to the pride of Championship Limerick dug deep and did enough to hold Clare at bay and out power the Clare forwards.
Limerick’s defensive line was much stronger physically than the Clare forward line and this helped in holding the Clare forward line to just 2 points from play, this line had been producing up on 1-10 from play in previous games. Limerick having been well beaten by Tipperary the previous weekend to put and end to their League Campaign were like the well documented stung cat and it was Clare who were the subject of their dignified response. Limerick looked stronger throughout and while Clare have been going very well in recent games will be disappointed they know that overall they were able to live with the Limerick challenge but just couldn’t penetrate that last line of defence.
Limerick’s young player of the year, Niamh Mulcahy, had the first score of the game. Claire Commane was unfortunate to see a well hit free come of the cross-bar. Eileen O’Brien hit a second point for the home side. Commane did have Clare on the board on four minutes before Deirdre Fitzptrick and Michelle tagged on two more points for the Shannonsiders. Sharon O’Loughlin did well to point for Clare after Deirdre Murphy had worked a well delivered Denise Lynch puck out in to the corner forward. Commane had a second free to bring Clare back to within a point of Limerick.
Helen McMahon

d Jane O’Leary on 18 minutes. Orla Slattery who was doing well at wing back got a hurl in to block a shot which looked to be going to the Clare net diverting it for a æ45. Eileen O’Brien converted this. Deirdre Fitzpatrick had her second from play and O’Brien was just as accurate with a second æ45. Clare Commane had pointed frees in the 26th and 29th minutes split by Niamh Mulcahy. This sent Clare in three points down at the break 0-08 v 0-05.
The visitors looked to had the bit between the teeth after the restart and Fiona Lafferty was quick of the mark with a point inside 30 seconds, this had the margin down to just two and Clare were pressing forward. The stronger Limerick backline did very well though in holding out the Clare forwards, Sarah Collins at full back was particularly effective. Sharon McMahon

d Aiveen O’Shea on 11 minutes as Clare tried to over turn this defensive strength. Scores on both sides were hard to come by and Clare struck a number of wides. Niamh Mulcahy was on target though for Limerick from a free in the 16th minute. Aoife Ryan was introduced for Sharon O’Loughlin and Aine O’Brien for Carina Roseingrave. Mulchay had the last point of the game in the 26th minute, as Denise Lynch saved and cleared the final attack.
Clare had good performances from Deirdre Murphy and Chloe Morey at mid-field. The half back line of Kate Lynch, Dee Corcoran and Orla Slattery, also did well. Siobhan Lafferty was again solid at full back with sister Fiona in the half forward line along with Carina Roseingrave posing Clare’s greatest threat in the forwards.
This game was a solid test for the Banner side and will stand to them as they prepare of the upcoming League Final. While the Clare side will be disappointed to not have gone at least one step further in this campaign, this test could be one of the best games they will play all year as it is going to show them a lot more than the relatively easy games they have had in the run up to the final.

Clare: Denise Lynch, Jane O’Leary, Siobhan Lafferty, Jane Scanlon, Kate Lynch, Dee Corcoran, Orla Slattery, Deirdre Murphy, Chloe Morey, Carina Roseingrave, Fiona Lafferty, Laura Linnane, Claire Commane, Aiveen O’Shea, Sharon O’Loughlin.

Helen McMahon for O’Leary(18min), Sharon McMahon for O’Shea (41 min), Aoife Ryan for O’Loughlin (53 min), Aine O’Brien for Roseingrave (55 min)

Sile Moynihan, Aideen McNamara, Sarah Collins, Janet Garvey, Judith Mulcahy, Rose Collins, Moira Dooley, Deirdre Ftzpatrick, Vera Sheehan, Eileen O’Brien, Michelle Casey, Niamh Mulcahy, Naomi Carroll, Orla Curtin, Joanne Clifford

Ref: Peter Downey, Cork

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