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Clare county hurling team

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Clare county hurling team represents Clare in hurling and is governed by Clare GAA, the county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association. The team competes in the three major annual inter-county competitions; the All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship, the Munster Senior Hurling Championship and the National Hurling League.

Clare's home ground is Cusack Park, Ennis. The team's manager is Brian Lohan.

The team last won the Munster Senior Championship in 1998, the All-Ireland Senior Championship in 2013 and the National League in 2016.

The team is nicknamed the Banner men.[1]


An early Clare hurling team
An early Clare hurling team

Clare have won six Munster SFCs and four All-Ireland SFCs.

Early years (1889–1932)

In 1889, Clare won their first provincial title after receiving a walkover from Kerry in the final. Clare contested the All-Ireland final, but lost to Dublin 5–1 to 1–6.

1914 saw Clare claim another Munster title when they beat Cork by 3–2 to 3–1. Clare then defeated Galway in the All-Ireland semi-final by 6–6 to 0–0 to reach the All-Ireland final for the first time their history. In the final Clare beat Laois by 2–4 to 1–2 and Amby Power became the first man to captain Clare to an All-Ireland hurling title.

In 1932, Clare captured another provincial title, defeating Cork on a scoreline of 5–2 to 4–1. They went on to contest the All-Ireland final, but lost to Kilkenny by 3–3 to 2–3.

Following years (1932–1995)

Ger Loughnane (1995–2000)

After losing Munster finals in 1993 and 1994, Len Gaynor was replaced as manager by Ger Loughnane. Clare made a return to the provincial decider in 1995 after a 2–13 to 3–9 victory over Cork in the semi-final. In the final minutes of the game, Cork were leading by two points when Clare earned a sideline which was taken by Fergie Tuohy. It travelled to the edge of the square, where Ollie Baker doubled on the sliotar, scoring a goal, to put Clare through. In the final, Clare faced Limerick. Clare dominated the game and ran out easy victors by 1–17 to 0–11. This was Clare's first Munster title in 63 years. In the All-Ireland semi-final, Clare played Galway. 2–1 from Ger O'Loughlin and 0–7 from Jamesie O'Connor saw Clare account for the tribesmen by 3–12 to 1–13. Offaly, reigning All-Ireland champions, awaited Clare in the final. In the second half, an Anthony Daly free rebounded off the post and fell to Eamonn Taaffe at the edge of the square, who sent the ball crashing to the back of the Offaly net. Clare ran out 1–13 to 2–8 victors.

In 1996, Clare were defeated in the opening round of the Munster Championship by Limerick on a scoreline of 1–13 to 0–15. This put an end to Clare's championship.

In 1997, Clare defeated Kerry and Cork to qualify for the Munster final against Tipperary. The match was held in Cork and Clare edged a tight affair by 1–18 to 0–18. Clare defeated Kilkenny by 1–17 to 1–13 in the All-Ireland semi-final. In the subsequent All-Ireland final, Clare were faced by Tipperary who went through the back door to reach the final. A late Tipperary goal saw the Premier County take lead but the teams were tied at 2–13 to 0–19 entering the closing stages. Jamesie O'Connor then scored a point to win Clare the All-Ireland. He finished the match with 0–7 and his outstanding performances throughout the year would see him win the Hurler of the Year award.

In 1998, Clare retained the Munster title. Clare defeated Cork by 0–21 to 0–13 to qualify for the final where they faced Waterford. A late goal from a Paul Flynn free tied the games at 1–16 to 3–10 and sent the match to a replay. Clare won out 2–16 to 0–10 winners. In the semi-final of the All-Ireland Clare faced Offaly. The game ended a draw, 1–13 apiece. In the replay Clare were leading in the closing stages by 2–10 to 1–16; however the referee accidentally blew the match up early. When the whistle blew there was disarray in Croke Park as the disgruntled Offaly supporters began a sit-down protest on the pitch. As the game hadn't been completed to 70 minutes, the semi-final had to be replayed. On this occasion, Offaly won out by 0–16 to 0–13.

In 1999, Clare defeated Tipperary to qualify for the Munster final, and set up the possibility of Clare winning their third successive Munster title. Cork won on a scoreline of 1–15 to 0–14. In the All-Ireland quarter-final against Galway, Clare ran out victors by 3–18 to 2–14 after a replay. In the semi-final, Kilkenny beat Clare 2–14 to 1–13.

In the 2000 Championship, Clare lost their Munster semi-final to Tipperary on a scoreline of 2–19 to 1–14. This was to be Ger Loughnane's last match as Clare manager.

Loughnane–Fitzgerald interim (2000–2012)

Davy Fitzgerald (2012–2016)

In 2012, Davy Fitzgerald began his tenure as Clare manager. At the time Clare had fallen down the game's pecking order, having not won a championship match since 2008 and they were also in the second tier of the Hurling League. Clare won Division 1B of the league to gain promotion for the following year. In the Munster Championship, Clare lost to Waterford by 2–17 to 1–18. Clare then faced Dublin in a Qualifier. In what was Tony Kelly's first senior game for the county, he scored 1–2 to help Clare win by 1–16 to 0–16.[2] In the next round Limerick beat Clare by 3-18 to 1-20.

In 2013, Clare won their Munster Quarter-Final against Waterford by 2–20 to 1–15, outscoring them by 2–12 to 0–6 in the second half. This was Clare's first win in Munster since 2008. In the semi-final, Clare lost to Cork by 0–23 to 0–15. Clare then beat Laois and Wexford in the qualifiers. This put Clare in the All-Ireland quarter-final where they beat Galway by 1-23 to 2-14. Munster Champions Limerick awaited Clare in the semi-final. An early Darach Honan goal helped Clare win out by 1–22 to 0–18 and qualify for their first final since 2002.[3] The All-Ireland final was held on 8 September and Clare were leading at half time. In the second half Cork scored three goals to get back into the game. With the sides level, Patrick Horgan scored to put Cork in the lead. Moments later, in injury-time, Domhnall O'Donovan pointed to send the game to a replay. Full-time score: 3–16 to 0–25.[4] On 28 September 2013, Clare won the replay by 5–16 to 3–16. Shane O'Donnell scored 3–3 to help Clare to victory. A Conor McGrath goal in the 61st minute was quickly followed by three points to put Clare 4–16 to 2–16 ahead. A late Stephen Moylan goal was cancelled out by a Darach Honan goal to see Clare win by 5–16 to 3–16.[5] Clare's centre-forward, Tony Kelly, was awarded the Young Hurler of the Year and Hurler of the Year awards.[6]

In 2014, Clare lost a Munster semi-final to Cork by 2–23 to 2–18. In Round 1 of the Qualifiers, 14-man Clare drew 2–25 apiece with Wexford.[7] In the replay in Wexford Park, despite being down to 13 men, Clare forced the game to extra-time before losing out by 2–25 to 2–22.[8] Clare hurling was dealt a further blow at the end of 2014 when it was announced that the Cratloe trio of Podge and Sean Collins and Cathal McInerney were focusing on football for the following year.

2015 began in a tumultuous fashion for the Clare team with two players, Davy O'Halloran and Nicky O'Connell, oping to leave the panel after they believed they were subjected to unfair disciplinary action. On the field of play, Clare lost four of their five league group stage matches before being relegated to Division 1B, after losing a play-off by 1–18 to 1–17 to Kilkenny. Clare also suffered defeat in the first round of the Munster Championship, losing to Limerick by 1–19 to 2–15. A comprehensive 3–26 to 0–15 win over Offaly put Clare into Round 2 of the Qualifiers, where they lost to Cork by 0–20 to 0–17.

In May 2016, Clare won the National Hurling League for the first time since 1978 after a 1–23 to 2–19 win against Waterford in a replay.[9][10]

Post-Fitzgerald years (2016–present)


There exists a supporters' club called Club Clare, which was established in 2017.[11]

Club Clare is not linked to a supporters' club that existed during Davy Fitzgerald's time as manager between 2012 and 2016. Fitzgerald established that club and was involved in its running. The county board told the Sunday Independent in 2021 that it did not have the accounts of that club and that the club (and similar supporters' clubs) had "nothing to do with" the county board. This contradicted Fitzgerald, who wrote in his 2018 book At All Costs: "Every single cent raised was accounted for, every detail presented to the audit committee. And that's what makes my blood boil when, even to this day, some smart-asses toss out that lazy question, 'Where did all the money go?' about the Supporters' Club in Clare. Open your eyes. Ask the audit committee. Ask the county board".[12] During the 2020 championship meeting between Clare and Wexford (then being managed by Fitzgerald), Fitzgerald had an exchange with a member of the Clare backroom team. Fitzgerald said afterwards: "I had to endure criticism from an unnamed individual who was seated in the stand", describing it as abuse and asking Clare's county board to investigate. The man later identified himself as kitman Niall Romer, who said: "I asked the question, where was the money that was raised in America? Where was the money from the Supporters' Club? And it got a reaction. There was no abuse, I asked a question, and when I got a reaction I kept asking the question... He didn't know where it was coming from at first. After that he realised and shut up". Romer said he had decided to ask the question himself (provoked, he said, by a delay in the release of the Wexford team sheet ahead of the game) and that it had not been a tactic of manager Brian Lohan.[13]

Current squad

Team as per Clare vs Tipperary in the Munster SHC semi-final, 4 July 2021

No. Player Position Club
1 Eibhear Quilligan Goalkeeper Feakle
2 Rory Hayes Right Corner Back Wolfe Tones
3 Conor Cleary Full Back St Josephs Doora-B
4 Paul Flanagan Left Corner Back Ballyea
5 Diarmuid Ryan Right Half Back Cratloe
6 John Conlon (c) Centre Back Clonlara
7 Páidí Fitzpatrick Left Half Back Sixmilebridge
8 Colm Galvin Midfield Clonlara
9 Cathal Malone Midfield Sixmilebridge
10 Aron Shanagher Right Half Forward Wolfe Tones
11 Tony Kelly Centre Forward Ballyea
12 Aidan McCarthy Left Half Forward Inagh-Kilnamona
13 David Reidy Right Corner Forward Éire Óg
14 Ian Galvin Full Forward Clonlara
15 Ryan Taylor Left Corner Forward Clooney-Quin
No. Player Position Club
16 Éamonn Foudy Substitute Inagh-Kilnamona
17 Jack Browne Substitute Ballyea
18 David McInerney Substitute Tulla
19 Mark Rodgers Substitute Scariff
20 Domhnall McMahon Substitute Michael Cusacks
21 Jason McCarthy Substitute Inagh-Kilnamona
22 David Fitzgerald Substitute Inagh-Kilnamona
23 Cian Nolan Substitute Smith O'Brien's
24 Gary Cooney Substitute O'Callaghan Mills
25 Shane Golden Substitute Sixmilebridge
26 Stiofán McMahon Substitute Broadford

RET Player has since retired from the county team.
INJ Player has had an injury which has affected recent involvement with the county team.
WD Player has since withdrawn from the county team due to a non-injury issue.

Current management team

Managerial history

Name Club From To All-Ireland Munster NHL WCC / MSHL C'ship Record
Fr. Harry Bohan
Colours of Kerry.svg
1970 1976 1971(D2) - P10
W2 D1 L7
Fr. Harry Bohan
Justin McCarthy
Colours of Kerry.svg
Passage West (Cork)
1977 1980 1977(D1), 1978(D1) - P9
W4 D1 L4
Fr. Harry Bohan
Colours of Kerry.svg
1981 1983 1981(D2) - P5
W2 D0 L3
Éamonn Cregan Claughaun (Limerick) 1984 1985 1985(D2) - P4
W1 D1 L2
Séamus Durack
Colours of Cork.svg
Éire Óg, Ennis
1986 1989 - P8
W3 D1 L4
Len Gaynor Kilruane MacDonagh's (Tipperary) 1990 1994 1990(D2), 1994(D2) - P10
W4 D1 L5
Ger Loughnane
Colours of Kerry.svg
1995 2000 1995, 1997 1995, 1997, 1998 - P24
W14 D4 L6
Cyril Lyons
Colours of Clare.svg
2001 2003 - P10
W5 D0 L5
Anthony Daly
Colours of Sligo.svg
2004 2006 - P17
W10 D1 L6
Tony Considine
Colours of Cavan.svg
2007 2007 P5
W3 D0 L2
Mike McNamara
Colours of Limerick.svg
2008 2009 2009 P7
W3 D0 L4
Ger O'Loughlin
Colours of Sligo.svg
2010 2011 P4
W0 D0 L4
Davy Fitzgerald
Colours of Clare.svg
2012 2016 2013 2012(D2), 2016(D2)
2013, 2016 P21
W10 D2 L9
Gerry O'Connor
Donal Moloney
Colours of Cork.svg
Éire Óg, Ennis
Colours of Limerick.svg
2017 2019 2019 P15
W7 D1 L7
Brian Lohan
Colours of Limerick.svg
Wolfe Tones, Shannon
2019 Present P0
W0 D0 L0
as of October 2020

Competitive record

All-Ireland SHC final record


Notable players


Since the All-Stars began in 1971, 28 Clare players have amassed a total of 49 All-Star Awards.

All Star winners
Awards Players
Brian Lohan (1995, 1996, 1997 & 2002) & Jamesie O'Connor (1995, 1997, 1998 & 2001)
Davy Fitzgerald (1995, 2002 & 2005), Seanie McMahon (1995, 1997 & 1998), Anthony Daly (1994, 1995 & 1998) & Seamus Durack (1977, 1978 & 1981)
Brendan Bugler (2012 & 2013), Colin Lynch (1997 & 2002), Ollie Baker (1995 & 1998), Liam Doyle (1995 & 1997), Ger O'Loughlin (1995 & 1997), John Callinan (1979 & 1981), John McMahon (1976 & 1977) & Ger Loughnane (1974 & 1977)
David McInerney (2013), Patrick Donnellan (2013), Conor Ryan (2013), Colm Galvin (2013), Tony Kelly (2013), Conor McGrath (2013), Pádraic Collins (2013), Tony Griffin (2006), Niall Gilligan (1999), Frank Lohan (1999), Seán Stack (1981), Colm Honan (1978), Noel Casey (1978) & Mick Moroney (1977)
Hurler of the Year winners
Award Players
All-Stars HOTY
Tony Kelly (2013), Jamesie O'Connor (1997) & Brian Lohan (1995)
Texaco HOTY
Tony Kelly (2013), Jamesie O'Connor (1997) & Seanie McMahon (1995)
Under-21 HOTY
Colm Galvin (2014), David McInerney (2013), Séadna Morey (2012) & Darach Honan (2009)
Young HOTY
Tony Kelly (2013)

Since the foundation of the Under-21 All-Star Awards in 2013, 14 Clare players have amassed 17 awards.

<span style="color:blue;"><b>U-21 All Star winners</b></span>
Awards Players
Tony Kelly (2013 & 2014), Seadna Morey (2013 & 2014) & Colm Galvin (2013 & 2014)
Bobby Duggan (2015), Ian Galvin (2015), Conor Cleary (2014), Jamie Shanahan (2014), Eoin Enright (2014), Aaron Cunningham (2014), David McInerney (2013), Pádraic Collins (2013), Ronan Taffe (2013), Paul Flanagan (2013) & Alan O'Neil (2013)
Munster Under-21 Hurler of the Year
Munster Minor Hurler of the Year


All-Ireland Championship
Provincial Championship
National Hurling League

Under-21 team

At the Under-21 grade, Clare have won 4 Munster titles and 4 All-Irelands.

Under-21 Breakthrough (2009)

Clare lost 12 Munster Under 21 Hurling finals before finally making the breakthrough in 2009. In the opening round Clare defeated Limerick in Ennis to qualify for the final. In the final, they prevailed on a scoreline of 2-17 to 2-12 in Dungarven. Clare faced a highly fancied Galway side in the smi-final. The match could not be decided over the sixty minutes so extra-time was required. Eventually the Banner County prevailed on a scoreline of 3-23 to 5-15.[19] In September 2009, Clare won their first ever All-Ireland under-21 hurling title with a 0-15 to 0-14 win over Kilkenny at Croke Park. The match was a tight affair and was only decided after a late Cormac O'Donovan point. A second half contribution of 3 points from play from John Conlon was pivotal in helping Clare to victory.[20] Darach Honan received the Bord Gáis Breakthrough award for 2009.

All-Ireland Treble (2012, 2013 & 2014)

In 2012, Clare easily accounted for Waterford in the Munster semi-final to qualify for the final against Tipperary. Going into injury time in the final, the Banner County trailed by a single point, but a late goal from second-half substitute, Niall Arthur, helped Clare win out by 1-16 to 1-14.[21] Clare then beat Antrim in the All-Ireland semi-final. In the final Clare outplayed Kilkenny and won on a scoreline of 2-17 to 2-11.[22] Clare retained their Munster and All-Ireland titles the following year. In the opening round of their 2013 campaign, Clare shook of a determined Waterford side to win 2-15 to 0-17. Clare once more faced Tipperary in the Munster final, this time in Thurles. Clare emerged victorious once more, winning 1-17 to 2-10.[23] In the All-Ireland semi-final, Clare easily accounted for Galway, defeating the tribesman by 1-16 to 0-07. They went on to successfully defend their All-Ireland title by defeating Antrim by 2-28 to 0-12.[24] In 2014, Clare defeated Limerick by 2-20 to 1-14 to reach the Munster semi-final where, after extra-time, they defeated Tipperary by 5-19 to 1-25.[25] In what was their sixth final in seven years, Clare easily accounted for Cork, winning by 1-28 to 1-13. This was the first time any Clare team had won three consecutive provincial titles.[26] Clare qualified for their third successive All-Ireland Under-21 final after beating Antrim on a scoreline of 4-28 to 1-10. Clare completed the All-Ireland treble when they defeated Wexford by 2-20 to 3-11 in Thurles.[27]

Competitive record

All-Ireland Under-21 Hurling Championship Final appearances

Minor team

Clare have won 4 Munster Championships and 1 All-Ireland in the minor grade.

Arrival On The Scene (1981 & 1989)

Clare won the Munster Minor title for the first time in 1981, defeating Tipperary by two points, 3-13 to 3-11. Clare didn't qualify for the final again until 1989. This time Limerick were the opposition and Clare prevailed once more, winning by a single point, 2-13 to 2-12. Clare went on to qualify for the All-Ireland final but were defeated by Offaly by 2-16 to 1-12.

All-Ireland Success (1997)

Clare's only All-Ireland title in the minor grade arrived in 1997 when the county's minors completed a double with the seniors, who defeated Tipperary on the same day. The minor team went through the backdoor after losing the Munster final to Tipperary by 2-13 to 1-13. Clare qualified for the final by beating Antrim by 0-13 to 1-04 and then defeating Kilkenny in the semi-final on a scoreline of 0-13 to 1-07. In the final Clare emerged victorious defeating Galway by 1-11 to 1-09.

Back-to-Back Munster Minor Titles (2010 & 2011)

In 2010, Clare were beaten by Waterford in the opening round of the Munster Championship, but they would make their way to the competition's semi-final after beating Kerry and Tipperary, by 0-17 to 1-13, in the play-offs. In the semi-final, Clare edged out Limerick on a scoreline of 1-17 to 2-12. In the final, Clare exacted revenge on Waterford for their opening round defeat and won by 1-16 to 1-11.[28] Clare beat Dublin in the All-Ireland semi-final by 0-20 to 2-13. In the final, Clare lost Kilkenny 2-10 to 0-14.[29] Clare then proceeded to retain their Munster crown in 2011. Clare easily accounted for Kerry in the opening round and in the semi-final, defeated Tipperary on a by 3-13 to 1-13. Clare won the final, by beating Waterford by 1-20 to 3-09 and were the first Clare team to retain their provincial crown.[30] In the All-Ireland semi-final, Galway defeated Clare, 1-23 to 1-18, after extra-time. Clare missed out on a three in a row when they lost the 2012 final to Tipperary, 1-16 to 1-12.

Competitive record

All-Ireland Minor Hurling Championship Final appearances

See also


  1. ^ "Team news: Conlon named to start at centre-back for Banner men". Hogan Stand. 7 May 2021.
  2. ^ "Clare Overcome dismissal To Oust Dublin". RTÉ News. 7 July 2012.
  3. ^ "Fitzgerald's Clare blitz Limerick to claim final berth". The Irish Times. 18 August 2013.
  4. ^ "Clare And Cork To Meet Again". RTÉ News. 9 September 2013.
  5. ^ "Clare Crowned Champions After Eight Goal Thriller". RTÉ News. 29 September 2013.
  6. ^ "Tony Kelly wins Hurler and Young Hurler of the Year awards". 8 November 2013. Archived from the original on 9 November 2013.
  7. ^ "Clare Survive for Wexford draw". RTÉ News. 5 July 2014.
  8. ^ "Wexford win epic replay". RTÉ News. 12 July 2014.
  9. ^ "Tony Kelly inspires Banner to first League title since 1978". Irish Independent. 8 May 2016. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  10. ^ "Clare take long-awaited Div 1 title in controversial circumstances against Waterford". Irish Examiner. 8 May 2016. Retrieved 9 May 2016.
  11. ^ "'We are in disarray' - Ger Loughnane calls for Clare fans to help at a time of crisis". 22 March 2021.
  12. ^ Crowe, Dermot (14 March 2021). "Supporters club was run separately to county board". Sunday Independent.
  13. ^ Crowe, Dermot (7 March 2021). "There and thereabouts: Deep divisions are being exposed in Banner hurling with temperatures reaching boiling point". Sunday Independent.
  14. ^ Gaa, Clare (31 October 2019). "Brian Lohan has been appointed Clare Senior Hurling Manager for 2 years with an option of 3rd year, following a review at the end of the 2nd". @GaaClare. Retrieved 2 November 2019.
  15. ^ "KELLY CLAIMS MUNSTER MINOR HURLER OF THE YEAR AWARD". 18 November 2011. Archived from the original on 3 January 2014. Retrieved 3 January 2014.
  16. ^ "Clare storm to Munster hat-trick against Cork as journey gathers pace". Irish Independent. 30 July 2014. Retrieved 31 July 2014.
  17. ^ "Clare's Keane edge". Irish Independent. 14 July 2011. Retrieved 26 July 2012.
  18. ^ "Munster IHC final: Banner beat Treaty in thriller". Hogan Stand. 6 July 2016. Retrieved 6 July 2016.
  19. ^ "Remember when Joe Canning scored 4-7 against Clare...but Galway lost the game?". 26 July 2013. Archived from the original on 3 January 2014. Retrieved 2 January 2014.
  20. ^ "Clare 0-15 0-14 Kilkenny". RTÉ News. 13 September 2009.
  21. ^ "Arthur strikes late to deliver Munster U21 title for Clare". 8 August 2012. Archived from the original on 16 January 2014. Retrieved 1 January 2014.
  22. ^ "Clare Skin Cats To Land All-Ireland U-21 Title". RTÉ News. 16 September 2012.
  23. ^ "Munster Under 21 Hurling Final – Clare 1-17 Tipperary 2-10". 7 August 2013.
  24. ^ "U-21s Show Antrim No Mercy". 18 September 2013.
  25. ^ "Clare Under-21 Hurlers defeat Tipperary in Extra-time". 16 July 2014.
  26. ^ "Clare crowned Munster U21 hurling champions with 15-point win over Cork". 31 July 2014. Archived from the original on 11 August 2014. Retrieved 31 July 2014.
  27. ^ "Clare Hold Off Brave Wexford Challenge to Claim Three In A Row". 13 September 2014.
  28. ^ "Munster Minor Hurling Championship Final 2010 - Clare 1-16 Waterford 1-11".
  29. ^ "Brennan yields net gain for Cats". Irish Independent. 6 September 2010.
  30. ^ "Munster Minor Hurling Final – Clare 1-20 Waterford 3-9". 10 July 2011.
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