This weekend’s clash of Clare and Waterford will see Clare manager Davy Fitzgerald return to face his old side Waterford less than 12 months after stepping down as manager.
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The Waterford players are aware that they will be coming up against a man who not only knows so much about the game of hurling but so much about their team also having managed them foe the last four championship seasons.
Waterford player Kevin Moran told the Irish Examiner “He knows all about us, there is no point arguing otherwise, there’s nothing we can do about that only go out and try to beat our own man, win our own battles, hope it’s reflected on the scoreboard.”
Waterford captain Shane ‘brick’ Walsh is trying to play down the Davy Factor and concentrate on the hurling on Sunday. “Forget the Davy factor, forget everything else; 30 players will take the pitch and what happens then between the lines is the be-all and end-all. “
“This is a knockout game as far as the Munster championship is concerned – lose and you’re gone from the province, win and you’re in the final.”
Clare are attempting to win a first round Munster championship since 2008 and forward and former U21 all Ireland winner John Conlan feels its time they started to show from that success of 2009.
He told the Irish Examiner
“It’s about time we got away from this thing of everyone saying we’re a young team, a coming team. It’s about time we started looking to the future and building on our potential.”
“I’ve been on the panel now for four years, this is my fourth year.
“We haven’t won a championship game since I’ve been there.
“That’s our big aim this year, to get our first round in and see how it goes.
“But it’s very important for the development of the team and to allow us to grow as a unit that we beat Waterford.”
Throw in on Sunday is at 4pm at Semple Stadium Thurles.