Davy Fitzgerald’s sensitivity to criticism, his agitation at refereeing performances this year and his famous sideline demeanour would suggest a man at his most comfortable when railing against something.

There isn’t a county in Ireland I love more than Co Clare. I have spent many (too many) happy hours in Cullinan’s bar in Ennistymon, and in the countl(...)

Tipperary’s Dan McCormack and Clare’s David Reidy during their Munster hurling under-21 semi-final at Cusack Park, Ennis, Co Clare. Photograph: Inpho

Clare 5-19Tipperary 1-25After-extra-time Four days on from the shock championship exit by their seniors, the Clare under-21 hurlers came out the right(...)

Clare’s Seádna Morey scores a goal for during the final moments of regulation time in the All-Ireland Hurling Qualifier against Wexford at Cusack Park in Ennis. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Clare 2-25 Wexford 2-25 (after extra time)Unfancied Wexford put it up to Clare at Cusack Park, Ennis on Saturday and almost pulled off the first sensa(...)

 Clare’s Colm Galvin battles with Cork’s  Daniel Kearney during the Munster semi-final. Photo: James Crombie/Inpho

Jack Guiney spoke this week about Wexford’s sheer delight at drawing Clare for this one, even if that also meant having to travel to Ennis. If there i(...)

Waterford’s Shane Walsh is tackled by two Laois players  during the qualifier at Walsh Park. Photo: Donall Farmer/Inpho

Waterford 2-22 Laois 1-15 Waterford ensured their campaign progressed into July when overcoming a determined Laois unit on a balmy Saturday evening a(...)

 Leo Varadkar, backed up  Joan Burton  takes to his wheels on a new cycleway. Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Michael D’s garden party season is in full swing. He has held two of them already – the first, last Saturday, was for families and on Wednesday, he ho(...)

Rory McIlroy at the press conference on Fota Island, Co Cork. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

Sun shining, temperatures hitting 25 degrees, Fota Island looking as manicured and magnificent as Augusta and just when you think it couldn’t possibly(...)

Clare’s manager Davy Fitzgerlad reacts during his side’s Munster Senior Hurling Championship semi-final defeat to Cork at Semple Stadium on June 15th. Photograph: Inpho.

It is turning into a stressful summer for hurling referees. Tipperary’s Johnny Ryan had charge of what may well have been the last Anthony Nash pen(...)

Cork’s Aidan Walsh climbs above the Clare duo of Pat Donnellan and John Conlon to catch the sliotar during the Munster SHC semi-final at Semple Stadium. Photograph: Cathal Noonan/Inpho

It was one of the most thrilling sights of a weekend packed with them across as many sports as you wished to watch: Aidan Walsh soaring high in the fi(...)

Clare manager Davy Fitzgerald reacts on the sideline. Photograph: Inpho/Cathal Noonan

As ever, the anatomy of victory and defeat hinges on perspective. Last September, Jimmy Barry-Murphy came within seconds of conjuring up what would p(...)