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Dublin: 4°C Monday 1 March 2021

'Limerick in-house matches just as competitive as an All-Ireland quarter final' - Gillane

The star forward has no concerns about missing out on an extra game in this year’s championship.

Aaron Gillane was speaking at the All-Ireland SHC series national launch.
Aaron Gillane was speaking at the All-Ireland SHC series national launch.
Image: Brendan Moran/SPORTSFILE

LIMERICK’S AARON GILLANE has no concerns about his side’s preparation for their All-Ireland semi-final against Kilkenny thanks to the intensity of their in-house training games.

After last year’s success, the defending All-Ireland champions have taken a more direct route through the 2019 campaign, with their Munster triumph propelling them straight into the last four of the competition. 

Kilkenny had to overcome Cork to reach the semi-finals, but Gillane isn’t worried about having one less competitive game to play this year as they prepare for Saturday’s showdown.

“Last year the extra match helped us so I can’t fault the route we went last year.

I am not sure it will make much of a difference because I am sure we will have plenty in-house matches and they are just as competitive as an All-Ireland quarter final.

Elaborating on that point, Gillane also commented on Limerick’s squad depth and said that players on the fringes of the panel have never lost their hunger to break into the team.

“No one is guaranteed their position to be honest and even some people who aren’t making the 26 for match-day panels they come to training ready and prepared because they know a good performance can help them get a jersey – I think that competition is really important and keeps everyone really focused and clued in.”

Aaron Gillane celebrates with fans Gillane after Limerick's Munster final win. Source: James Crombie/INPHO

 Limerick sealed their place in the All-Ireland semi-final after a clinical 12-point victory over Tipperary in the Munster decider.

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Along with their league and All-Ireland titles, that result leaves John Kiely’s men in possession of three major trophies. 

Gillane notes that the players squad took an appropriate amount of time to toast their success before getting back to work on the training field, but acknowledges that the supporters deserve to savour these moments.

“I think it means a lot to the people of Limerick to have the three major trophies here at once.

The support is mad to be fair to them. I think it’s important they enjoy these days too. They fall us up and down the country and follow us all over the place – even some over to Boston. They deserve to enjoy these moments.”

“I suppose you have to celebrate these achievements because they don’t come around too often but at the same time you don’t want to go over the top – we had a day or two to remember what we were after doing but after that you would be mad to get back training and kick on again.”

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