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Limerick secure home semi-final after impressive Munster U20 hurling win over Cork

Six points separated the teams in Páirc Uí Rinn.

Limerick's Patrick Kirby gets by the Cork defence.
Limerick's Patrick Kirby gets by the Cork defence.
Image: Ken Sutton/INPHO

Limerick 1-25

Cork 1-19

LIMERICK’S DOMINANCE OF their hurling meetings with Cork teams continued tonight, their U20 outfit enjoying a successful away trip as they emerged with six points to spare in this Munster championship tie.

Both teams had already booked spots in the semi-finals after winning their respective games against Clare. The prize on offer was to see who topped the group and Limerick seized that to ensure they will have the benefit of home advantage for next Wednesday’s semi-final against Waterford.

Cork must travel to Semple Stadium to take on Tipperary and will reflect on a display where they paid for a lethargic showing before the break, always forced to chase this encounter thereafter.

A powerful second quarter display paved the way for Limerick to triumph. They outscored Cork in that time frame 0-11 to 0-3, stitching together seven points without reply between the 17th and 26th minutes.

Senior star Cathal O’Neill, their scoring hero in the opening round win over Clare, may have been declared unavailable due to his appearance for John Kiely’s team in Páirc Uí Chaoimh last Sunday, but Limerick coped impressively.

Another senior panellist Colin Coughlan flighted over three first-half points while Aidan O’Connor was top scorer with 0-6. 

ethan-twomey-in-action-against-patrick-kirby Ethan Twomey in action against Patrick Kirby. Source: Ken Sutton/INPHO

O’Connor finished with 0-9 to his credit and in total Limerick had ten different players that inked their names on the scoresheet. 

Cork had began the game brightly as they fashioned an advantage by 0-7 to 0-5 but were staring at a six-point interval deficit. Ben Cunningham, who struck 0-10, and midfielder Brian O’Sullivan, who supplied four shots between the posts, were their principal sources of scores.

They threatened to fight back on a couple of occasions in the second half. Substitute Daniel Hogan did excellently in the 35th minute to create a chance that Jack Cahalane stylishly finished to the net. Cork had cut the gap to four points with twelve minutes remaining when Limerick pounced for their only goal of the game.

Eddie Stokes surged clear to unleash a shot that Cork goalkeeper Brion Saunderson did well to tip onto the upright but corner-forward Donnacha Ó Dalaigh reacted quickest to send the rebound to the net. Cork rallied from seven points down with six minutes left to trail by four in injury time but Limerick’s strength and authority surfaced once more.

Substitute John Kirby and commanding defender Coughlan registered the points that saw them round off the evening with a six-point cushion on the scoreboard.

Scorers for Limerick: Aidan O’Connor 0-9 (0-6f), Colin Coughlan 0-4 (0-1f), Donnacha Ó Dalaigh 1-1, Joe Sweeney 0-2, Shane O’Brien 0-2, John Kirby 0-2, Eddie Stokes 0-2, Jimmy Quilty 0-1, Adam English 0-1, Patrick Kirby 0-1.

Scorers for Cork: Ben Cunnigham 0-10 (0-7f), Brian O’Sullivan 0-4, Jack Cahalane 1-0, Ciarmhac Smyth 0-1, Brian Keating 0-1, Luke Horgan 0-1, Eoin O’Leary 0-1, Daniel Hogan 0-1.

Limerick

1. Conor Hanley Clarke (Kilmallock)

2. Chris Thomas (Doon), 3. Fergal O’Connor (Effin), 4. Evan O’Leary (Ahane)

5. Cian Scully (Dromin Athlacca Banogue), 6. Ethan Hurley (Newcastlewest), 7. Colin Coughlan (Ballybrown)

8. Jimmy Quilty (Blackrock – captain), 9. Joe Sweeney (Adare)

10. Adam English (Doon), 11. Aidan O’Connor (Ballybrown – vice captain), 12. Eddie Stokes (Doon)

13. Shane O’Brien (Kilmallock), 14. Patrick Kirby (Patrickswell), 15. Donnacha O’Dalaigh (Monaleen)

Subs

20. John Kirby (Patrickswell) for Sweeney (40)

24. Patrick O’Donovan (Effin) for English (50)

17. Brian O’Meara (Mungret St Paul’s) for Ó Dalaigh (53)

18. Patrick Reale (Knockainey) for Stokes (56)

21. Barry Duff (Mungret St Paul’s) for Scully (63)

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Cork

1. Brion Saunderson (Midleton)

2. Darragh O’Sullivan (Ballinhassig), 3. Kevin Lyons (Ballygarvan), 4. Ciarmhac Smyth (Midleton)

5. Eoin Downey (Glen Rovers), 6. Ethan Twomey (St Finbarr’s), 7. Luke Horgan (Glen Rovers)

8. Brian O’Sullivan (Kanturk), 9. Michael Mullins (Whitechurch),

10. Brian Keating (Ballincollig), 11. Ben Cunningham (St Finbarr’s), 12. Denis McSweeney (Blarney)

13. Eoin O’Leary (Glen Rovers), 14. Jack Cahalane (St Finbarr’s – captain), 15. Diarmuid Healy (Lisgoold)

Subs

24. Colin Walsh (Kanturk) for McSweeney (half-time)

23. Daniel Hogan (Sarsfields) for Mullins (half-time)

17. Cathal McCarthy (Sarsfields) for Lyons (38)

20. Sean Walsh (Carrigtwohill) for Healy (45)

22. Jack Leahy (Dungourney) for O’Leary (55)

Referee: Michael Kennedy (Tipperary)

About the author:

Fintan O'Toole  / Reports from Páirc Uí Rinn

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