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  • GAA

Defeat sees Tipp minors miss out on vital development time

Wednesday, 9th May, 2018 3:05pm

Story by Shane Brophy
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Defeat sees Tipp minors miss out on vital development time

Tipperary's Gavin Meagher gets out ahead of Clare's Shane Meehan. PHOTO: ODHRAN DUCIE

Defeat sees Tipp minors miss out on vital development time

Tipperary's Gavin Meagher gets out ahead of Clare's Shane Meehan. PHOTO: ODHRAN DUCIE

GAA: Electric Ireland Munster Minor Football Championship Semi-Final


Tipperary 2-4

Clare 1-9


Tipperary's minimum aim coming into this years minor football campaign to restablish themselves as next in the pecking order after the kingpins in Cork and Kerry, and while they managed wins over Waterford and Limerick, Clare proved a bridge too far last Wednesday evening.

The prize at stake was huge, not only reaching a Munster final, possibly in Semple Stadium, but football up to the August Bank Holiday weekend and those extra training sessions for the next ten weeks or so would have been hugely beneficial.

However, it wasn't to be as Clare produced a dominant spell in the last ten minutes, kicking the last three points from play to see themselves through to a second successive Munster final against Kerry.

While Tipperary had the upperhand on the scoreboard for long stages, it was despite playing second fiddle in terms of Clare who dominated the ball and looked the more assured side in what they wanted to do, however their shot selected left them down for the most part as sixteen wides over the hour prevented them from taking a more commanding position.

That being said, 2-4 is a poor return from a Tipperary side that seemed to be improving off the back of their victories through the backdoor but back in Semple Stadium, they struggled to get into any flow, turning over the ball very cheaply right throughout.

When they did attack, they didn't make the most of the space Kyle Shelly and Sean O'Connor had in front of them but not enough of ball got in early to them, and when it did, it wasn'tmade best use of with good goal chances going abegging, particularly in the first half.

In a pretty low key game, Tipperary got off to a good start with Kyle Shelly kicking a fine point from play in the third minute and six minutes later, his Moycarkey clubmate Max Hackett fired home a cracking goal, after drifting in behind the defence unmarked and was picked out by Kevin Hayes before finishing well.

Tipp, however, didn't build from this as the lively Thomas Kelly got Clare off the mark a minute later. The Banner were missing their fare of chances and looked set to be punished with Sean O'Connor's driving run ended with a fisted point.

However, from there to half time Clare took command, as they would do late in the second half with midfield duo Chibby Okoye and Emmet McMahon to the fore. McMahon landed a long range point from play before a heavy challenge on Mark McInerney by Thomas McDonagh allowed Shane Meehan a chance to convert a close range free and he would add a second before the break to cut the deficit to one at half time, 1-2 to 0-4.

Tipp had two decent goal chances towards the end of the half, firstly Kyle Shelly did well to turn his man and with a point on, saw Sean O'Connor in the square unmarked but he rushed his shot which flew wide. Then on half time, Shelly cut through again but shot straight at the keeper when a point might have been the better option.

Despite Christy English converting an early second half free for Tipperary, Clare took the momentum from the end of the first half into the second and hit the front in the 34th minute in somewhat controversial circumstances as Chibby Okoye's attempt at a point fell just under the crossbar with Kevin Keane beating Callan Scully to fist the ball to the net. Tipp argued strongly for a square ball but the referee Andy Murnane, in consultation with his umpires allowed the goal to stand.

Thomas Meehan followed it up with a free and suddenly Tipp were in a spot of bother with the game going against them, however, they responded well with a 42nd minute Christy English goal to go back in front.

Emmet McMahon and Sean O'Connor traded frees as Tipp held a slender lead going into the last ten minutes, however, they would fall away badly in that time as following a McMahon 45 to level the sides up once more, Clare as good as set-up camp in the Tipp half for the remainder, dominating the home sides kickout and eventually resulted in two well taken points from Thomas Meehan.

In fact, Tipp had few scoring chances in that time as they turned the ball over cheaply and lacked belief and leadership to come from behind as Clare rather comfortably ran out the four minutes of injury time to extend their summer, while for Tipperary it is back to the drawing board, and while this group can reflect on playing four championship games, winning two, they remain a long way off the level of the groups that dominated the grade in 2011 and 2012.



Man of the Match: Shane Meehan (Clare)

SCORERS – Tipperary: Christy English 1-1 (0-1 free); Max Hackett 1-0; Sean O'Connor 0-2 (1 free); Kyle Shelly 0-1.

Clare: Shane Meehan 0-5 (3 frees); Emmet McMahon 0-3 (1 free, 1 45); Kevin Keane 1-0; Thomas Kelly 0-1.


TEAMS – Tipperary: Callan Scully (Nenagh Eire Og); Tommy McDonagh (Cahir), Shane Lowe (Moyne-Templetuohy); Christy McDonagh (Cahir); Mark O'Meara (Grangemockler/Ballyneale, Capt), Gavin Meagher (Inane Rovers), Johnny Ryan (Arravale Rovers); Keith Ryan (Upperchurch/Drombane), Kevin Hayes (Moycarkey/Borris); Max Hackett (Moycarkey/Borris), Devon Ryan (Knockavilla Kickhams), Eddie Daly (Knockavilla Kickhams); Kyle Shelly (Moycarkey/Borris), Christy English (Ballyporeen), Sean O'Connor (Clonmel Commercials).

Subs: Rhys Byron (Galtee Rovers) for K Ryan (HT); Billy Murphy (Kilsheelan-Kilcash) for Meagher (39); Jamie Holloway (Carrick Swan) for D Ryan (44); Paddy Creedon (Durlas Og) for O'Connor (51); John O'Sullivan (Galtee Rovers) for Byron (59 inj).

Clare: MichaeL Garrihy; Jack Reidy, John Murphy, Darragh Connolly; Conor Carrig, Cillian Rouine (Capt), Adam O'Connor; Cibby Okoye, Emmet McMahon; Thomas Kelly, Cian McDonagh, Padraic O'Donoghue; Kevin Keane, Shane Meehan, Mark McInerney.

Subs: Gavin Daurio for O'Donoghue (41); Shane Lillis for Keane (56).

Referee: David Murnane (Cork

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