FL2: no separating Banner and Premier

February 11, 2018

Tipperary selector Shane Stapleton.
©INPHO/James Crombie.

Clare and Tipperary scored eleven points apiece in a dramatic Division Two encounter at Ennis.

In a tense all-Munster affair, the hosts finished with 13 men after Jamie Malone (straight red) and Eoin Cleary (black card) were sent to the line in the second half, while Tipp had Josh Keane dismissed for a second yellow-card offence.

Indeed, Tipperary selector Shane Stapleton was taken to hospital after the game following an apparent collision with Malone in the 46th minute. It was seven points apiece at that stage and Jimmy Feehan and Bill Maher pushed the Premier two clear only for Kieran Malone and Pearse Lillis to equalise following an exchange between Cleary and Conor Sweeney.

Sweeney and Keelan Sexton then traded late frees as the spoils were shared but the Banner will feel they should have won it. Clare - chastened by Meath last weekend - certainly delivered a gutsy first-half display to turn around trailing by just a couple of points, 0-7 to 0-5.

Sweeney and Sexton swapped the first two points before Sweeney (3) and Liam McGrath made it 0-5 to 0-1. Liam Casey made it double scores after Gary Brennan and Sexton pointed for Clare and Sweeney's 30th-minute point gave Tipp a 0-7 to 0-3 advantage only for the Banner to hit four unanswered points either side of the break: Ciaran Russell and Cleary floated over the last two scores before the short whistle and Lillis and Malone pointed in the 38th and 42nd minutes respectively.

Clare - K Roche; C O'Dea, A Fitzgerald, G Kelly; E Collins, C Russell (0-1), P Lillis (0-2); G Brennan (0-1), C O'Connor; J Malone (0-1), E Cleary (0-2, 1f), G O'Brien; S O'Donoghue, K Sexton (0-3, 2f), D Tubridy. Subs: D Bohannon for C O'Connor, A Sweeney for D Tubridy (BC), K Malone (0-1) for G O'Brien, C Finnucane for E Cleary (BC).

Tipperary - E Comerford; S O'Connell, J Meagher, A Campbell; B Maher (0-1), R Kiely, J Feehan (0-1); L Casey (0-1), L Boland; J Keane, J Kennedy, B Fox; C Sweeney (0-7, 5f), M Quinlivan, L McGrath (0-1). Subs: I Fahey for M Quinlivan, K Fahey for J Kennedy, E Moloney for L Boland, J Lonergan for L McGrath, S Carey for I Fahey.

Referee - J Henry.

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