Clare caused the biggest upset of the weekend in the Allianz National Hurling League, when they proved too strong for near neighbours Galway in Cusack Park on Sunday. Davy Fitzgerald’s side had lost their opening game to Waterford and were facing a tough challenge against the beaten All Ireland finalists.
Clare 0-18 Galway 1-13
The Banner county elected to play with the aid of a strong wind in the opening half, and that proved to be the correct decision as they quickly established a lead that Galway always found difficult to claw back. Colin Ryan and Padraic Collins were on target as the home side could do little wrong in the opening quarter. They soon led 0-9 to 0-4 and despite the best efforts of Joe Canning, the visitors struggled to get a grip of proceedings. Davy Glennon was running at the home defence and when he was fouled Canning converted the frees, but from general play he was well marshalled. Galway could not close the early gap and went in trailing 0-12 to 0-8.
John Conlon starred for Clare after the restart and he hit three excellent points to help his side close out the game. At 0-16 to 0-9 it looked curtains for the Tribesmen but Canning was always a huge threat and when he scored a goal after the third quarter, it left Clare holding on for dear life. To their credit the Banner men fought back and points from Tony Kelly and Fergal Lynch were enough to earn them local bragging rights.
Both these sides now have one win and one defeat from two outings, and still very much in the hunt for league honours. The win will be more significant for Clare who saw this season as one in which to consolidate their Division One status. Further performances such as today’s and they could yet make an impact in the latter stages of the competition.