“I can see Clare coming out on top here. There won’t be any windmilling at the throw-in but that’s okay. Championship is here. Let the games begin.”
Former Kilkenny star Jackie Tyrrell fancies Clare to defeat Waterford on Sunday. The Deise overcame Clare in the 2020 All-Ireland quarter-final and reached the All-Ireland final.
Clare beat Waterford in the 2018 and 2019 championships and this encounter promises to be fascinating.
Writing in his Irish Times Column, Tyrrell remarked how Clare have momentum, having won their last three matches.
Jackie Tyrrell played against Clare in the 2006 All-Ireland semi-final.
“I have a really good feeling for Clare here. That would have seemed a silly thing to say after such a disastrous start to the year for them, both on and off the field,” Tyrrell wrote.
“But they have the one thing everybody is dying to bring into the championship with them – they have momentum.
“Hurling is a fickle game. It moves on very quickly and a week can be like a year. The bad start to Clare’s league is all it was. A bad start that got better – and now they go into championship on a three-game winning streak.”
Limerick overcame Waterford in 2020 All-Ireland final.
Waterford are missing some key players on Sunday including Tadhg De Burce and Stephen O’Keefe.
Tyrrell mentioned how the context is different for Waterford in 2021 after reaching an All-Ireland final against the odds last year.
“Last year becomes this big shadow in the background. You make a big point of not mentioning it but you know it’s there,” he wrote.
“You know you should be taking everything game by game but at the same time, the context is different now. You’re not the outsiders that nobody expects anything from. You’re the All-Ireland runners-up. You were 70 minutes from glory.
“That can play on your mind if you don’t address it straight on. Leadership will be needed here for Waterford to play their way through all that and the loss of some of those experienced guys who are the on-field generals could be key.
“For those reasons, I can see Clare coming out on top here. There won’t be any windmilling at the throw-in but that’s okay. Championship is here. Let the games begin.”
Waterford vs Clare is live on RTE on Sunday, with the throw-in set for 3:30 pm.