When it looked like Ballyea were about to claim their first ever Clare SHC title Clonlara refused to panic, instead they waited for an opportunity to pounce, their patience paid off as Cathal ‘Tots’ O’Connell hit over an equaliser to send the tie to a replay.
Damien Power is in his first year in charge of the Clonlara senior hurlers and he was following the mindset of Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky Balboa when speaking to the media in the moment after Tots’ leveller.
“I’m around long enough maybe not at this level but long enough to know it’s not over till it’s over but to be fair they got the goal and came back into the game and Kelly got a couple of great scores to bring them back, finding it hard to talk at the moment”.
He added “I was looking up there to see if we’d one more chance and we got one more chance to be fair it felt to the right man Tots and he topped it over the bar and we’re back again”.
Power was more impressed by O’Connell’s effort seeing as he found himself being tightly marked by Pearse Lillis and at times another Ballyea player. It didn’t stop the Clonlara sharpshooter as he hit their last three scores of the game.
As he looks ahead to the second bout, Damien is adamant there is a lot more in his charges. “We will I’ll put it very short and we’ve got a lot more to improve, I think there’s another twenty to thirty percent in our lads and they know that I’ve said it inside in the dressing room, we’ll bring it the next day I hope”.