Conor Cleary has been named to start in the Clare team for Sunday’s Munster hurling final in the TUS Gaelic Grounds. The full back had to leave the field against Cork after sustaining an arm or shoulder injury and there were fears that he faced a lengthy lay-off.
Manager Brian Lohan names an unchanged team for the weekend but has tended to make changes before the throw-in and if Cleary is deemed not fit to start, the options are Séadna Morey, who replaced him against Cork and All Star nominee Paul Flanagan.
Limerick name the same side that defeated Cork in the last round-robin match. Twice Hurler of the Year Cian Lynch is once again listed on the bench. Having sustained a hamstring injury he didn’t start against Cork and appeared for only a few minutes at the end.
He may however be alright to start on Sunday in a reprise of last year’s epic final, won by Limerick in extra time.
Adrian Mullen misses Kilkenny’s Leinster final against Galway at Croke Park, having sustained a thumb fracture against Wexford. He is one of three listed changes from that match. Also out are Pádraig Walsh and Walter Walsh, who revert to the bench.
In comes Mikey Carey, who only recently returned home after a sojourn in Australia but whose pace was a big asset to the team that reached last year’s All-Ireland final and two All Star nominees, Richie Reid and Paddy Deegan, have both recovered from injury.
Galway list Cathal Mannion among the subs but he is considered unlikely to make an appearance. There are two announced changes with TJ Brennan replaced at corner back by Darren Morrissey and Declan McLoughlin making way for the fit again Brian Concannon.
CLARE: Éibhear Quilligan; Adam Hogan, Conor Cleary, Rory Hayes; Diarmuid Ryan, John Conlon, David McInerney; David Fitzgerald, Cathal Malone; Peter Duggan, Tony Kelly, Aidan McCarthy; Ryan Taylor, Shane O’Donnell, Mark Rodgers.
Subs: Eamonn Foudy, Cian Nolan, Ian Galvin, Shane Meehan, Aron Shanagher, Aaron Fitzgerald, Robin Mounsey, Paul Flanagan, Cian Galvin, Keith Smyth, Séadna Morey.
LIMERICK: Nickie Quaid; Mike Casey, Dan Morrisey, Barry Nash; Diarmaid Byrnes, Declan Hannon (capt), Kyle Hayes; Darragh O’Donovan, Will O’Donoghue; Gearóid Hegarty, Cathal O’Neill, Tom Morrissey; Aaron Gillane, Séamus Flanagan, Peter Casey
Subs: David McCarthy, Conor Boylan, Ronan Connolly, Aaron Costello, Colin Coughlan, Adam English, Richie English, Cian Lynch, Graeme Mulcahy, Oisín O’Reilly, David Reidy.
GALWAY: Éanna Murphy; Jack Grealish, Gearóid McInerney, Darren Morrissey; Pádraic Mannion, Daithi Burke, Fintan Burke; Joseph Cooney, Ronan Glennon; Tom Monaghan, Conor Cooney, Kevin Cooney; Conor Whelan, Brian Concannon, Evan Niland.
Subs: Darach Fahy, TJ Brennan, Eoin Lawless, Adrian Tuohey, Seán Linnane, Cathal Mannion, Tiernan Killeen, Liam Collins, Declan McLoughlin, Jason Flynn, Donal O’Shea.
KILKENNY: Eoin Murphy; Mikey Butler, Huw Lawlor, Tommy Walsh; Mikey Carey, David Blanchfield, Darragh Corcoran; Richie Reid, Paddy Deegan; Tom Phelan, John Donnelly, Billy Ryan; Martin Keoghan, TJ Reid, Eoin Cody.
Subs: Aidan Tallis, Conor Delaney, Cillian Buckley, Pádraig Walsh, Conor Fogarty, Alan Murphy, Cian Kenny, Timmy Clifford, Walter Walsh, Richie Hogan, Billy Drennan.