Clare and Wexford retired to the dressing rooms in Saturday's All-Ireland hurling quarter-final on level terms, but Brian Lohan was far from pleased with what he saw in those opening 35 minutes.

It would get much worse for the Banner before it got better – they found themselves six points down with 15 minutes remaining, but a late scoring burst saw Clare march into an All-Ireland semi-final and a date with Kilkenny.

Central figures in the storming finish were Shane O’Donnell and Tony Kelly, players with experience of what it takes to go all the way.

O’Donnell picked off two points in an industrious display that saw him scoop the player of the match award while the Ballyea star recovered from a shaky start and difficulties from placed balls to steer his team home with a tally of four points.

Both men referenced the strong words from their manager at the interval.

Aron Shanagher (left) and Ian Galvin after the full-time whistle

"It was an extremely difficult day and we were just delighted to put our shoulders to the wheel in the second half," O’Donnell told RTÉ Sport.

"At half-time we got a fairly rousing speech from Brian Lohan. We knew what our task was coming out."

O’Donnell admitted that the first-half display was disappointing from a Clare perspective, stemming from a work ethic that was uncharacteristically below par.

"Wexford were beating us man to man around the pitch. At the end of the day, if you’re not winning your position, that’s what he was trying to emphasise.

"You can have all the tactics you like, but if the man beside you to the ball, it’s a simple as that to win a game."

The 2013 Hurler of the Year Kelly said the manner of the victory, digging out a result that seemed to be going away from them after Mark Fanning and Lee Chin grabbed second-half goals, was especially pleasing.

"We were below par in the first half in terms of executing our hurling, our basic touch, our striking and shooting.

"The biggest thing for us was being sluggish and still managing to grind out the win.

"It was probably the most satisfying one we have had this year."