Séamus Cleere

Séamus Cleere

Séamus Cleere (left) accepting the Liam MacCarthy Cup in 1963.
Personal information
Irish name Séamus de Cléir
Sport Hurling
Position Right wing-back
Born 1940
Bennettsbridge, County Kilkenny
Height 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Years Club
1959–1969 Bennettsbridge
Club titles
Kilkenny titles 6
Years County
1960–1969 Kilkenny
Inter-county titles
Leinster titles 4
All-Irelands 2

Séamus Cleere (born 1940) is an Irish retired hurler who played as a right wing-back for the Kilkenny senior team.

Cleere made his first appearance for the team during the 1960 championship and became a regular player over the next decade until his retirement after the 1969 championship. During that time he won two All-Ireland medals, four Leinstermedals and two National Hurling League medals.[1][2] Cleere captained the team to the All-Ireland title in 1963.

At club level Cleere played with the Bennesttsbridge club, winning six county club championship medals.

Playing career


Cleere played his club hurling with his local Bennettsbridge club. He had much success with the side in the 1960s, winning six Kilkenny SHC titles in all.


Cleere first came to prominence on the inter-county scene in 1962 when he captured his first National Hurling League medal. It was Kilkenny’s first league title since 1933. The following year he was appointed captain of the team and he won his first Leinster title following a comfortable victory over Dublin. This victory allowed Kilkenny to advance directly into the All-Ireland final where, for the third successive occasion, their opponents turned out to be Waterford. In the game itself Eddie Keher scored a record 14 points, 10 of which came from frees, giving the Kilkenny men a comfortable 4–17 to 6-8 victory over the Decies. Cleere had captured his first All-Ireland medal and had the honour of collecting the Liam MacCarthy Cup on behalf of his county. His performances throughout the championship campaign earned him a coveted Cú Chulainn award and the Texaco Hurler of the Year Award.

In 1964 Cleere won a second Leinster title following another huge win over Dublin. Tipperary later provided the opposition in the All-Ireland final, however, in spite of Kilkenny being the pundits’ favourites the men from Munster completely overpowered Cleers' side on a score line of 5–13 to 2–8.

Kilkenny lost their provincial crown in 1965, however, the team bounced back in 1966 with Cleere collecting a second National League medal and a third Leinster title. Kilkenny later faced Cork in the All-Ireland final for the first time since 1947 and, once again, the Leinster champions were the red-hot favourites over an unfancied Cork side. In the game itself Eddie Keher scored a late goal, however, the damage was done as Cork went on to win their first All-Ireland title in twelve years.

The following year Kilkenny continued their provincial dominance with Cleere picking up a fourth Leinster title before lining out in a fourth All-Ireland final at Croke Park. Tipperary were Kilkenny’s opponents on the day, however, ‘the Cats’ had goals at vital times from Paddy Moran, Martin Brennan and Tom Walsh to lay to rest a Tipperary bogey that had lasted since 1922. Kilkenny won on a score line of 3–8 to 2–7 and Cleere collected a second All-Ireland medal.

Cleere won his fifth Leinster medal as a substitute in 1969, however, a knee-injury kept him out of the All-Ireland final which Kilkenny won. In spite of this he was still awarded with a third All-Ireland medal and he retired following the conclusion of the championship.




Sporting positions
Preceded by
Alfie Hickey
Kilkenny Senior Hurling Captain
Succeeded by
Seán Buckley
Preceded by
Jimmy Doyle
All-Ireland Senior Hurling
winning captain

Succeeded by
Mick Murphy
Preceded by
Donie Nealon
Texaco Hurler of the Year
Succeeded by
John Doyle


  1. "County profile: Kilkenny". Hogan Stand. Retrieved 13 November 2011.
  2. "Leinster Senior Hurling Finalists" (PDF). Leinster GAA. Retrieved 13 May 2012.


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