Limerick need a good day out in Semple Stadium

Holders Waterford continue to make strides and look well placed to advance

Derek McGrath’s Waterford scored just one goal in the league this year. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho.

Derek McGrath’s Waterford scored just one goal in the league this year. Photograph: Ken Sutton/Inpho.

 

Allianz Hurling League semi-final: Limerick v Waterford, Semple Stadium, Sunday, 2pm (TG4)

Life in Division 1B has had a groundhog-day element about it for Limerick.

This year, they came out on the wrong side of their must-win clash against neighbours Clare.

Last year, they drew against Waterford in a scintillating opening game in the Gaelic Grounds which finished 2-16 to 0-22.

But Waterford got promoted that season and went on to win the league outright. Limerick stayed put.

No challenging county has made the strides Waterford has done since that drawn game.

Senior players

Since then, Limerick lost two of their senior players and leaders, Donal O’Grady and Niall Moran.

This has the feel of a significant day for a team eager for a forward thrust.

Declan Hannon, top scorer in the league for Limerick, remains unavailable with an ankle injury while Séamus Hickey (hamstring) is also unfit for duty.

Definite losses but TJ Ryan has proven adept with juggling his team through necessity throughout the league.

Cian Lynch and corner-back Tom Condon are available for selection once more.

Ryan’s comments after Limerick’s quarter-final win, referring to “hidden agendas” against both team and backroom staff and of the “vultures” circling Limerick hurling spoke volumes about the pressure the team is under just now.

The return of the Na Piarsaigh players will deepen his options.

Waterford manager Derek McGrath is right to anticipate a forceful effort from Limerick on Sunday.

Waterford’s total of 0-17 was enough to see off their neighbours Wexford in the quarter-final but it was yet another game when the defending champions failed to engineer a goal: they’ve scored just one in league action this year.

Limerick have netted 11 times, albeit it in the lower division.

Goals could secure passage for the Treaty County and they could use a victory over a top-four side.

But that drought will end and Waterford have been consistent throughout the league and look well placed to advance.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.