Clare up and running with an easy win over Laois
Colm Collins’s side begin their campaign with a seven-point victory at Cusack Park
Clare’s Darragh Bohannon and John O’Loughlin of Laois challenge for the ball at Cusack Park. Photograph: Bryan Keane/Inpho
Clare 1-16 Laois 0-12
Colm Collins’s Clare grabbed their first win in this year’s Allianz Football League when they had an easy win over a disappointing Laois at Cusack Park, Ennis.
Hitting the ground running, the hosts were never behind and were fully deserving of their seven-point victory. Infact, Laois kicked the last three points of the game to make the final scoreline a little more respectable.
The Banner county got off to a great start and found themselves 3-0 after six minutes, with scores by Eoin Cleary, Keelan Sexton and midfielder Cathal O’Connor.
Donal Kingston kick-started Laois’s account in the seventh minute with a close range point. But for much of that opening half the visitors attack was found wanting, kicking wide after wide.
Clare punished them in the 25th minute when Daniel Walsh was in for a goal following a han-pass from Gavin Cooney. This score made it 1-7 to 0-3 with Clare in the driving seat. At half time they lead by 1-8 to 0-5.
Cleary had the first score of the second half, a pointed free. It was replied to by a Paul Kingston effort but then the home side hit three in a row to open up a nine-point lead.
Laois were kept at bay for the remainder of the half as Clare picked off their scores at will. Mike Quirke’s men got the last three scores of the game through Colm Begley, Donal Kingston and substitute Gary Walsh.
Clare: S Ryan; C Russell, C Brennan, E Collins; C O’Dea, S Collins, D Walsh (1-2); D O’Neill, C O’Connor (0-1); P Lillis (0-1), E Cleary (0-10, six frees), D Bohannon; G Cooney, K Sexton (0-1), J Malone. Subs: J McGann for Malone (4 mins), D Tubridy (0-1, free) for Sexton (half-time), A Sweeney for E Collins (54), E McMahon for O’Neill (54), A Griffin for Cooney (63), I Uguaru for O’Dea (66),C Murray for Lillis (66).
Laois: N Corbett (0-1, free); R Pigott, M Timmons, T Collins; G Dillon, C Begley (0-1, free), P O’Sullivan; J O’Loughlin, K Lillis; M Barry, E O’Carroll (0-1, free), D O’Reilly; E Lowry, D Kingston (0-4, two frees), P Kingston. Subs: G Walsh (0-3, two frees) for O’Reilly (half-time), B Byrne (0-1) for Lowry (46 mins), B Daly for Lillis (54), M Keogh for Barry (54), E Buggie for Collins (62), R Munnelly for P Kingston (0-1) (66), S Bolger for Timmons (66).
Referee: S Lonergan (Tipperary)