U-21 HC semi-final: Banner score facile victory

August 23, 2014

Antrim's Ryan McCambridge chases Aaron Cunningham of Clare during the All-Ireland U21HC semi-final.
©INPHO/Cathal Noonan.

Clare 4-28
Antrim 1-10

Holders Clare experienced little difficulty in disposing of Antrim's challenge in the first of today's All-Ireland U-21 HC semi-final double-bill at Semple Stadium.

In what was a repeat of last year's final, two first-half goals from full-forward Aaron Cunningham set the tone for the one-sided contest.

Captain Tony Kelly added a third midway through the second-half before Cunningham completed his hat-trick.

The only thing Antrim had to cheer about was a green flag raised by Stephen McAfee in the 19th minute.

In advance of the game, McAfee said their main aim was to "keep it respectable" but the writing was on the wall for the Ulster outfit from the early stages.

His palmed goal left the scoreboard reading 1-6 to 1-0 but the number 11's efforts proved to be in vain as normal service was resumed two minutes later when Cunningham bagged his second of the afternoon.

A massive 18 points separated the sides at the half-time whistle - Clare 2-16, Antrim 1-1 - and you couldn't help but feel some sympathy for Kevin Ryan's players who found themselves way out of their depth.

Kelly's and Cunningham's second-half goals rubbed salt into their wounds and 27 points was the difference when Antrim were put out of their misery.

Clare - K Hogan; J Colleran, J Browne, S Morey; G O'Connell, A O'Neill, J Shanahan (0-1); C Galvin (0-2), E Enright (0-1); B Duggan (0-5, 3f), T Kelly (1-3), P Duggan; S O'Donnell (0-2), A Cunningham (3-3), D Reidy (0-3). Subs: C O'Connell (0-6, 5f) for D Reidy, N Deasy (0-1) for B Duggan, S O'Brien for S Morey, S Gleeson (0-1) for C Galvin, A McGuane for J Shanahan.

Antrim - C Butler; M Dudley, P Burke, M Bradley (0-1); R McCambridge, J McGreevy, T Ó'Ciarain; E Campbell, N McKenna; D McCloskey, Stephen McAfee (0-3), D McGuinness; D McKernan (0-1), Sean McAfee (1-0), C Clarke (0-3, 1f). Subs: C Burke (0-1) for D McGuinness, S McCaughan (0-1) for D McCloskey, J O'Connell for N McKenna, M Connolly for R McCambridge, E McGaughan for Sean McAfee.

Referee - B Redmond.

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