Clare 1-9 Kilkenny 3-16(2009 Allianz NHL)

Date: 29 Mar 2009
Time: 2.30pm
Venue: Cusack Park Ennis
More misery for Clare and it looks like Division 2 hurling next year for Mike Mac's team.

Kilkenny once again oozed class and composure as they put hosts Clare to the sword (3-16 to 1-9) in a largely lop-sided NHL Division One clash at Cusack Park, Ennis.

The destination of the spoils was well known long before the death as pointless Clare suffered at the hands of a powerful second half display from the league leaders.

Kilkenny threatened to run amok in the early stages as they sashayed their way into a convincing 0-5 to 0-0 lead with Richie Power firing over a brace, scores which were added to by similar scores from Aidan Fogarty, Richie Hogan and Henry Shefflin as wasteful Clare recorded six wides in reply.

Gradually Clare found their feet with Colin Ryan very much to the fore for the Banner County and his three frees plus a fine effort from Tony Carmody (17th min) saw the Munster men cut their deficit to 0-4 to 0-6 after 23 minutes.

Clare got a let-off in the 18th minute when Richie Power burst through but his shot cannoned to safety off the post.

Henry Shefflin followed up in the 24th minute to make it a three point game once more as the pendulum swung this way and that with monotonous regularity.

Trailing by 0-6 to 0-9 on the restart, Clare were left shell-shocked just 47 seconds into the second half when Aidan Fogarty blasted home a goal - after a fine pass from Eoin Larkin - to leave the Cats double-score leaders.

Kilkenny proceeded to extend their lead to 1-11 to 0-8 with Colin Ryan pointing for the Banner County before being withdrawn shortly afterwards after points from Henry Shefflin firing two points to sandwich an effort from Niall Gilligan.

Clare's hopes of redemption were given a temporary boost when Barry Nugent goaled but those hopes all but evaporated though when Henry Shefflin kicked the sliotar to the net to propel the Cats into a comfortable 2-11 to 0-8 lead and then Fogarty followed up later to nab the Cats' third goal.