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Munster SFC semi-final preview: Clare v Cork

Updated: Sunday, 16 Jun 2013 13:26 | Comments

Clare face a daunting task against Cork
Clare face a daunting task against Cork

By Micil Glennon

Clare v Cork, Cusack Park, Sunday 3.30pm

Clare welcome Cork to Ennis on Sunday hoping to put up a fight in Mick O'Dwyer's 181st Championship game.

It may well go on to be dubbed the Year of the Munster Massacres, after a series of one-sided games in the province re-opening the debate around Championship structures but The Banner County will want to make sure they are not added to the list.

In addition to Cork’s 18-point winning margin over Limerick in the quarter-final, Kerry dismissed Tipperary and Waterford by 16 and 26 points respectively. Not good.

Add to that the fact Clare failed to get out of Division 4 and it all points to only one outcome.

True, O’Dwyer has never placed much emphasis on the league but a win over Limerick in the last round would have seen them go up. Instead it was their neighbours who will play in Division 3 next season.

The legendary Kerryman, who will be involved in his 181st Championship game as player and manager in Cusack Park, has not ruled out (at least) one more big shock.

The 77-year-old told the Irish Examiner: "Nobody sees an upset but upsets can happen, you know. We'll put our best team out on the field in the best shape we can. If they play to their potential we have a right chance – we have some bloody great players."

Cork boss Conor Counihan reckons that the Banner will use last year’s 3-16 to 0-13 loss in the province as motivation.

"Once the draw was made, the fact the game is in Ennis, they were probably saying they were going to give this one hell of a cut. Any team that has that attitude will put you under pressure if you don’t get to grips with them early," he told the Irish Examiner.

Corner-back Eoin Cadogan is the only change advised, the Douglas clubman missed the Limerick game with an ankle injury.

Even with the Micko factor it’s too big an ask for Clare to stop the 2010 All-Ireland champions.

Verdict: Cork

Clare: TBC

Cork: Ken O'Halloran, Eoin Cadogan, Michael Shields, Damien Cahalane, James Loughrey, Graham Canty, Tomas Clancy, Alan O'Connor, Pearse O'Neill, John O'Rourke, Patrick Kelly, Ciaran Sheehan, Daniel Goulding, Brian Hurley, Paul Kerrigan.

Highlights of all the weekend’s action on The Sunday Game on RTÉ Two from 10.00pm

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