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Allianz HL D1: Kilkenny and Clare ends level

Allianz Hurling League Division One Group B

KILKENNY 1-19 CLARE 3-13

By Shane Stapleton at UPMC Nowlan Park

Brian Cody snapped a four-game losing streak against Clare but his Kilkenny side could only manage a draw at Nowlan Park.

Shane ODonnell ran amok with 2-1 as the Banner came from four behind to lead late on, with Alan Murphy levelling it for the Cats with a late free.

Both teams had chances to nab the two points, but Brian Lohan at least has the consolation of knowing they are guaranteed a place in the knockout stages.

For Cody, who last beat the Banner in a relegation play-off in 2015, his side must get a result away to Laois next time out to progress.

Momentum swung wildly throughout the first half as each starting Kilkenny forward put brackets after his name, but rarely troubled visiting goalkeeper Donal Tuohy.

Clare, however, carried a serious goal threat when they delivered in decent ball to ODonnell, as he collected a Tony Kelly switch-ball and fired to the net on eight minutes, before feeding Ryan Taylor for another after 23.

The Banners use of the ball was questionable at times as too many 50-50 deliveries rained in on ODonnell, while others took on low percentage shots from all angles.

Clares nine wides to Kilkennys five by the break suggested that Lohans men could have established more than a 2-7 to 0-10 lead.

The wasteful shooting continued after the restart as Kilkenny were allowed tack on scores to level Darren Mullen and Alan Murphy frees doing the damage before Ger Aylwards goal turned the tide.

Domhnall McMahon had dropped a shot short on 48 minutes, and the Cats immediately drove the ball long downfield onto the D.

It broke in behind for Aylward, who ran at Tuohy and fired low past him.

The Glenmore man then assisted for a John Donnelly point soon after, before another Murphy free put Kilkenny four in front with 12 minutes to go.

It looked as though the hosts would grind it out but Clare showed mettle as Diarmuid Ryan narrowed the gap, before Darren Brennans net was rattled for a third time.

Liam Corry raided forward from corner-back for Clare but dropped his effort short, and ODonnell eventually scrambled the loose ball to the net.

Wally Walsh replied instantly but then Aaron Cunningham put Clare ahead once more, before free-taker Murphy won and then converted the leveller.

David McInerney had a free shot at goal from 30 yards to win it for the Banner, but couldn't find the target, before the final whistle went.

Scorers for Kilkenny: Alan Murphy 0-7 7fs, Ger Aylward 1-1, Adrian Mullen, John Donnelly, Wally Walsh 0-2 each, Richie Hogan, Billy Ryan, Darren Mullen, Eoin Cody, Richie Leahy 0-1 each.

Scorers for Clare: Shane O'Donnell 2-1, Tony Kelly 0-7 5fs, Ryan Taylor 1-0; John Conlan, Colin Guilfoyle, Diarmuid Ryan, David Reidy, Aaron Cunningham 0-1 each.

KILKENNY: Darren Brennan; Conor Browne, Huw Lawlor, Ciaran Wallace; Conor Delaney, Paddy Deegan, Darren Mullen; Cillian Buckley, Alan Murphy; Adrian Mullen, John Donnelly, Richie Leahy; Billy Ryan, Richie Hogan, Wally Walsh

Subs: Ger Aylward for A Mullen 22, Tommy Walsh for Browne HT, Bill Sheehan for Hogan 44, Eoin Cody for Ryan 59

CLARE: Donal Tuohy; Liam Corry, Conor Cleary, Jack Browne; Stephen O'Halloran, Pat O'Connor, Aidan McCarthy; David McInerney, Tony Kelly; Colin Guilfoyle, David Reidy, Domhnall McMahon; Ryan Taylor, John Conlan, Shane O'Donnell

Subs: Aron Shanagher for Conlan 44, Diarmuid Ryan for Guilfoyle 46, Aaron Cunningham for Reidy 59, Podge Collins for Taylor 65 Seadna Morey for McMahon 69.

REFEREE: Liam Gordon Galway.

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