Munster and Leinster hurling permutations: who needs to do what to qualify?

All you need to know ahead of this weekend’s small ball Super Sunday in both provincial championships

Everything remains up for grabs in what promises to be a small ball Super Sunday. Here, we look at the permutations ahead of the final round of games in both the Munster and Leinster Senior Hurling Championships. In Munster, Limerick are at home to Waterford while Clare travel to Tipperary (both games at 4pm), while in Leinster Kilkenny play Wexford, Galway face Dublin and Antrim welcome Carlow (all games at 2pm).


Limerick (4pts)

A win or a draw in their game against Waterford would be enough for Limerick to contest a sixth consecutive Munster final. With John Kiely’s men having home advantage on Sunday, it would be a significant upset if Limerick didn’t progress to the decider. However, defeat to Waterford could see Limerick tumble to fourth – if Clare were to beat or draw with Tipperary. In that scenario, Clare and Waterford would leapfrog Limerick in the table, leaving the All-Ireland champions in joint third alongside Cork – but the Rebels would edge Limerick on the head-to-head record, thus eliminating the Treaty County from the championship.

Chances of making the top three: 4 sliotars out of 5


Cork (4pts)

Cork’s Rocky-style comeback from a seemingly hopeless situation has become one of the most captivating stories of the championship. The Rebels lost their first two games, but stepped off the ropes and came out swinging in their last two outings – resulting in wins over Limerick and Tipp. Cork’s future in the championship is out of their hands now, though, as they have played all their round-robin games. There are only two scenarios which could see Cork snatch a place in the provincial final – they need Tipperary to beat Clare and Waterford to either beat or draw with Limerick (which would see scoring difference used to separate the teams). However, the Rebels would probably settle for third place if offered it right now.

Chances of making the top three: 3 sliotars out of 5

Clare (4pts)

For Clare, the pathway ahead is clear – avoid defeat against Tipperary and the Banner will be back in another Munster final. Even if they were to lose to Tipperary, but Limerick beat Waterford, Clare would finish second due to their head-to-head record with Cork. But defeat to Tipp, coupled with a Waterford win over Limerick, would see Clare tumble to fourth on scoring difference. The big plus for Clare is the fact their season is very much in their own hands, coming up against a Tipp side low on confidence.

Chances of making the top three: 3 sliotars out of 5

Waterford (3pts)

All doorways remain open to Waterford – the provincial final, third place or elimination from the championship. Should Davy Fitzgerald’s men beat Limerick, then Waterford would be guaranteed a place in the Munster decider. A draw could still be enough for them to finish third, but for that to happen then Clare would have to avoid defeat to Tipperary – which would leave Waterford and Cork level on four points, but with the Déise boasting the advantage on the head-to-head record. Still, picking up a result against Limerick will be Waterford’s biggest challenge this weekend.

Chances of making the top three: 2 sliotars out of 5

Tipperary (1pt)

Tipperary’s interest in the 2024 championship ended with last week’s humbling defeat at the hands of Cork. Liam Cahill’s men only have pride to play for now when they host Clare at Semple Stadium. They will be hoping to finish the year on a high, but either way it has been a disappointing campaign for the Premier County, who could be facing a few years away from the main stage.

Chances of making the top three: 0 sliotars out of 5


Kilkenny (6pts)

A draw or a win over Wexford in Nowlan Park on Sunday would secure Kilkenny a spot in another provincial final – Kilkenny are aiming for a fifth successive Leinster title. However, Wexford beat Kilkenny in both the 2022 and 2023 Leinster SHC round-robin stages, so the Cats cannot afford to take Sunday’s clash for granted. Indeed, should they lose to Wexford, and the Dublin-Galway clash produces a winner, then Kilkenny would miss out on a place in the Leinster final. However, they are guaranteed a top three spot even if they lose as the Leinster SHC uses a different model than Munster to separate teams where three or more finish level on points. The number of league points accumulated in the mini-league of games between those teams involved are tallied – in this case it would be Kilkenny, Galway and Dublin – and Derek Lyng’s men have done accumulated sufficient points from those games already, drawing with Galway and beating Dublin.

Chances of making the top three: 5 sliotars out of 5

Wexford (5pts)

Keith Rossiter’s side can claim a place in the Leinster final with a victory over Kilkenny at Nowlan Park on Sunday. They could already have booked their place in the decider but for the concession of late goals against Dublin in their opening game and a shock defeat to Antrim in round two. The real fear for Wexford is that Dublin and Galway draw in Salthill, because coupled with a Kilkenny win that would see the Model County finish fourth and eliminated from the championship.

Chances of making the top three: 3 sliotars out of 5

Dublin (5pts)

A win in Salthill would see the Dubs advance to the Leinster final but defeat to Galway would leave them staring at elimination from the championship. If Kilkenny and Galway both win, third place would be determined by scoring difference between Dublin and Wexford, who drew their round-robin match. Currently, Wexford have a nine point scoring advantage over the Dubs in that metric. The safest way for Dublin to advance in the championship is to pick up something from their trip to Salthill.

Chances of making the top three: 3 sliotars out of 5

Galway (5pts)

Should both games end level, the system to separate teams used in the Leinster SHC would cost Galway a place in the All-Ireland series. Where three or more teams finish level, the number of league points obtained in games between those sides is added to determine finishing positions. Were this weekend’s two games to finish as draws, the mini-league would involve Wexford, Dublin and Galway. The Tribesmen – who lost to Wexford – would finish bottom of that trio. However, the cleanest cut of all for Galway would be to beat Dublin, ensuring their season remains alive – irrespective of what happens elsewhere.

Chances of making the top three: 3 sliotars out of 5

Antrim (2pts)

They face what is essentially a relegation play-off against Carlow, though because of their victory over Wexford earlier in the campaign a draw would be enough for Antrim to maintain their Leinster SHC status.

Chances of making the top three: 0 sliotars out of 5

Carlow (1pt)

Carlow must beat Antrim to avoid dropping back to the Joe McDonagh Cup. The Barrowsiders earned a noteworthy draw against Kilkenny recently, but nothing but victory over Antrim would suffice on Sunday.

Chances of making the top three: 0 sliotars out of 5