Dubious line-ball helps Clare past Waterford in Walsh Park 1 week ago

Dubious line-ball helps Clare past Waterford in Walsh Park

Waterford 0-22 Clare 1-20

Just who knows?

A sideline ball 50 yards out from goal, Austin Gleeson has done it before.

On Sunday he didn't get the chance. A 75th minute Stephen O'Keeffe clearance eventually arrived down from the clouds and with Waterford in dire need of possession to keep this game alive, Patrick Curran soared high.

So too did David McInerney and the sliotar clearly rebounded off the Clare man's arm and out over the sideline. The linesman didn't see it that way. Line-ball to Clare.

Waterford got another chance but nothing concrete. Fine margins decided this Munster Championship opener but Waterford can have no complaints bar the above.

That's because Clare led Waterford the from pillar to post in Walsh Park but as Donal Moloney and Gerry O'Connor's men so often do, they began to falter with the finish line in sight.

Luckily enough for them, they had enough money in the bank with John Conlon's goal always giving them that edge over the Déise all the way through.

They were on balance the better team though. Tony Kelly was majestic for long parts in the sunny south east, the Ballyea club man knocking over three glorious points in the first half.

Similarly, Shane O'Donnell was boasting Harvard's credentials as a hurling nursery in the inside line, the Éire Óg club man buzzing around the place like he'd never been away.

Indeed, it was his industry and impishness that set up the Conlan goal. Down the other end, David McInerney looked back to the form we know he has in him while Pat O'Connor beside him was keeping Waterford's inside line quiet.

Waterford were always going to come back at them though. Austin Gleeson roared into the second half with a couple of trademark rakers after plucking the ball from the sky and that had half of Walsh crowd fisting the air.

Clare began to jangle though, as the short passes failed and the first touch faded. But they'd already done enough to win.