ALL-IRELAND SHC ROUND 1 QUALIFIER: CLARE 2-25 WEXFORD 2-25 (AET)
Clare and Wexford will have to do it all again as not even extra time could separate the two teams in a thrilling match in Cusack Park on Saturday, which ended 2-25 apiece.
Wexford led 2-9 to 0-10 at half time thanks to goals from Conor McDonald and Liam Óg McGovern. Clare’s Podge Collins was dismissed on the stroke of half time but despite the numerical disadvantage, All-Ireland champions Clare managed to fight back in the second half to send the game to extra-time.
Colin Ryan gave an exhibition of free-taking while Seadhna Morey scored a crucial goal for the home side with just a minute remaining. The substitute blasted the ball past Mark Fanning after Tony Kelly’s penalty had been blocked. Conor Ryan then grabbed a last minute point to send the game to extra time.
Conor McGrath goaled for Clare just five minutes into the extra time period to put two points between the sides but Wexford kept in touch and were level with a minute left.
The outstanding McGrath looked to have won it with a well-taken point at the end of extra-time before Wexford’s Paul Morris, who ended up with ten points, levelled the game with the last puck of the game.
Wexford raced ahead with two early points from McGovern and Andrew Shore before their first goal came after nine minutes. Podge Doran flicked the ball along the ground to McDonald who struck the ball past Patrick Kelly.
And the Model County scored four unanswered points straight after the goal. Clare looked to mount a comeback with Colin Ryan accurate from frees but Wexford struck their second goal in the 16th minute as McGovern sprinted clear of Cian Dillon to rifle the ball past Kelly.
Clare looked better in the second half but Wexford were awarded a penalty with three minutes to go. Brendan Bugler was adjudged to have fouled McGovern as he burst through on goal.
Paul Morris drove the penalty over the bar to give Wexford a four point cushion, but Conor McGrath was dragged down by Keith Rossiter at the other end seconds later and Clare were given a penalty with just a minute remaining from which Morey’s goal resulted. Conor Ryan added the equalising point to send the game to extra time.
McGrath’s goal in extra time was superb as he rounded O’Hanlon before calmly slotting the ball past Mark Fanning.
Then came the last minute drama as McGrath’s point was cancelled out by the superb Morris, meaning a replay will be needed to determine the victor of this tie.
Scorers for Clare: C McGrath 1-5, S Morey 1-0, Colin Ryan 0-12 (10f), T Kelly 0-4, C McInerney 0-2, C Dillon 0-1, C Ryan 0-1
Scorers for Wexford: L McGovern 1-4, C McDonald 1-1, P Morris 0-10 (0-1 pen, 5 f, 1 ’65’), L Chin 0-3, E Moore 0-1 (free), D Redmond 0-1, A Shore 0-1, J Guiney 0-1, D O’Keeffe 0-1, I Byrne 0-1, R Jacob 0-1
CLARE: P Kelly; C Dillon, D McInerney, J Browne; B Bugler, Conor Ryan, P O’Connor; P Donnellan, C Galvin; J Conlon, T Kelly, C McInerney; P Collins, C McGrath, Colin Ryan. Subs: P Duggan for Donnellan (50), D Honan for Conlon (56), S Morey for Galvin (65), S Golden for Morey (7), Morey for McInerney (81), P Flanagan for O’Connor (87).
WEXFORD: M Fanning; L Ryan, M O’Hanlon, K Rossiter; E Moore, L Chin, C Kenny; D Redmond, H Kehoe; A Shore, P Doran, L McGovern; P Morris, C McDonald, R Jacob. Subs: J Guiney for Jacob (30), G Sinnott for Kehoe (h-t), D O’Keeffe for Redmond (45), PJ Nolan for Doran (47), R Kehoe for Shore (63), I Byrne for McDonald (71), R Jacob for Sinnott (83), C Devitt for Chin (87).
Referee: Cathal McAllister (Cork)
Report from www.gaa.ie