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11th Dec 2022

Paudie Clifford scores bold as brass back-heel as Fossa clinch Junior Championship

Patrick McCarry

Paudie Clifford

The pure insolence of it.

Paudie Clifford and his brother, David (you may have heard of him) combined for 1-14 as Fossa won the AIB Munster GAA Football Junior Club Championship, this afternoon.

The Clifford brothers capped off a memorable 2022, which included All-Ireland glory for Kerry, by helping Fossa to an 11-point win over Kilmurry, at Mallow GAA Sports Complex in Cork.

The Cliffords turned down a holiday to Dubai with the rest of the All-Ireland champion Kerry panel so they could line out for their local club in the final. Kilmurry would have had the brothers marked down as key dangermen, but theory and practice are often miles apart.

As it turned out, David Clifford racked up 10 points while Paudie Clifford finished with 1-4, including this audacious back-heel finish:

Paudie CliffordCredit:

Paudie Clifford seals the deal

Kilmurry kept in touch in the first half, with the score 0-9 to 0-4 to the favourites, Fossa.

It was the third quarter that saw Fossa pull clear, with both Cliffords influential. Even a sending off for Eoin Tablot, for two cautions, did not slow their momentum.

The game was already in the back when Paudie Clifford took advantage of a defensive slip-up to back-heel in his side’s only goal of the game. The final scoreline saw Fossa winning 1-17 to 1-6.

Following the game, Fossa manager Adrian Sheehan paid tribute to David and Paudie Clifford for turning down a winter holiday in the sun to win a junior title with their clubmates.

Ultimately, as soon as that trophy was lifted, it will have seemed like the easiest decision of an accolade-laden 2022.

Paudie CliffordFossa captain Paudie Clifford lifts the cup after his side’s victory in the AIB Munster GAA Football Junior Club Championship Final. And (below) David Clifford is mobbed by young fans. (Photo by Michael P Ryan/Sportsfile)

While Paudie Clifford got the trophy to lift, David finished the year with a total scoring tally of 20-169. You get the sense he is only getting started, too.

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