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Dublin: 6 °C Sunday 16 December, 2018
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Good afternoon and welcome to The42′s coverage of the Munster SHC semi-final between Limerick and Tipperary at the Gaelic Grounds.

The visitors have, famously, yet to win a Munster Championship game under Eamon O’Shea but will hope to put that right today as they bid to go one better than their All-Ireland runners-up spot last season.

For Limerick, they’ve already had a taste of provincial hurling this season with a hard-fought win over Clare last month ago and will look to use that to their advantage today.

There’s only one way to find out – throw-in is at 4pm.

25 minutes to throw-in here and hopefully this game will be a bit closer than what we’ve just witnessed in Nowlan Park.

Before the weekend, Tipp were just about the bookies favourites but, after that, are Kilkenny the new leaders in the race for the Liam MacCarthy?

Here are the two teams and there appears to be now changes from those named during the week…

Limerick:

1. Barry Hennessy (Kilmallock)

2. Stephen Walsh (Glenroe)
3. Richie McCarthy (Blackrock)
4.  Seamus Hickey (Murroe Boher)

5. Seanie O’Brien (Patrickswell)
6. Gavin O’ Mahony (Kilmallock)
7. Tom Condon (Knockaderry)

8. James Ryan (Garryspillane)
9. Paudie O’Brien (Kilmallock)

10. Donal O’Grady (Granagh Ballingarry)
11. Declan Hannon (Adare)
12. David Breen (Na Piarsaigh)

13. Graeme Mulcahy (Kilmallock)
14. Shane Dowling (Na Piarsaigh)
15. Cian Lynch (Patrickswell)

Tipperary:

1. Darren Gleeson (Portroe)

2. Paddy Stapleton (Borrisoleigh)
3. James Barry (Upperchurch Drombane)
4. Conor O’Brien (Éire Óg Annacarty-Donohill)

5. Kieran Bergin (Killenaule)
6. Pádraic Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)
7. Ronan Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)

8. James Woodlock (Drom & Inch)
9. Shane McGrath (Ballinahinch)
10. Jason Forde (Silvermines)
11. Brendan Maher (Borrisoleigh)
12. Patrick Maher (Lorrha/Dorrha)

13. John O’Dwyer (Killenaule)
14. Seamus Callanan (Drom & Inch)
15. Niall O’Meara (Kilruane MacDonaghs)

And here are the subs…

Limerick

17. Wayne McNamara (Adare)
18. Dan Morrissey (Ahane)
19. Conor Allis (Croom)
20. Cathal King (Na Piarsiagh)
21. Paul Browne (Bruff)
22. John Fitzgibbon (Adare)
23. David Reidy (Dromin-Athlacca)
24. Kevin Downes (Na Piarsiagh)
25. Thomas O’Brien (Patrickswell)
26. Adrian Breen  (Na Piarsiagh)

Tipperary

16. Darragh Egan (Kildangan)
17. Michael Breen (Ballina)
18. Shane Bourke (JK Brackens)
19. Michael Cahill (Thurles Sarsfields)
20. Barry Heffernan (Nenagh Éire Óg)
21. Conor Kenny (Borris Ileigh)
22. Conor O’Mahony (Newport)
23. Bill Maher (Kilsheelan-Kilcash)
24. Denis Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)
25. John McGrath (Loughmore-Castleiney
26. Gearoid Ryan (Templederry Kenyons)

We’re almost ready from throw-in here. Where’s your money going?

1Mins

And we’re off. Tippeary playing against the wind in the first half.

2Mins

Tipperary 0-0 Limerick 0-0: Both sides have had chances to open the scoring but neither has troubled the umpires just yet.

3Mins

Limerick 0-1 Tipperary 0-0: And Declan Hannon opens the scoring for the home side with a well taken point.

5Mins

Yellow – Tipperary: Paddy Stapleton picks up the game’s first yellow card for an off-the-ball incident.

7Mins

Limerick 0-2 Tipperary 0-0: The game has yet to settle down really with Limerick dominating possession but failing to make it count on the scoreboard other than Hannon who adds his second point of the semi-final.

9Mins

Limerick 0-3 Tipperary 0-0: Shane Dowling has his first score of the game and their lead is now three. Tipperary offering nothing in attack so far.

Seamus Callanan with the brilliant finish there out of nowhere. Of course, that’s what I get for hitting publish on an entry saying his side are “offering nothing in attack” literally seconds earlier.

The curse of the liveblogger.

12Mins

Tipperary 1-2 Limerick 0-3: Callanan adds a 65 to his goal and the Premier County lead for the first time.

John O’Dwyer adds another score to stretch their lead to two points.

14Mins

Tipperary 1-2 Limerick 0-3: Another wide for Limerick but they do look to be trying to play everything through Declan Hannon. Tipp will have to keep an eye on the Adare clubman.

Tipperary 1-3 Limerick 0-3: Bonner Maher has his first point of the game and there’s a goal between the teams.

17Mins

Tipperary 1-4 Limerick 0-4: After Tipp stretched their lead to four, Shane Dowling settles the ship for Limerick will a well-taken free.

19Mins

Tipperary 1-5 Limerick 0-4: Goal chance for Tipperary but Bonner Maher runs into a cul de sac. There’s some confusion after his shot but, after a bit of consultation, the umpire awards a point.

20Mins

Tipperary 1-6 Limerick 0-4: Shane McGrath adds a second point, Tipp’s lead is now five and remember, they’re playing against the breeze in this half.

21Mins

Tipperary 1-7 Limerick 0-5: Niall O’Meara becomes the fourth forward to score for Tipperary. David Breen scores a well-needed point for the home side down the other end.

23Mins

Tipperary 2-7 Limerick 0-6: That was Callanan with his second goal of the game and he brings his total to 2-1.

Limerick really need to get back into this game quickly and Gavin O’ Mahony’s score from distance will help.

25Mins

Tipperary 2-7 Limerick 0-7: Shane Dowling opts to take his point with the close range free to reduce the gap to six points.

27Mins

Tipperary 2-8 Limerick 0-7: Jason Forde with a fine point to leave Brendan Maher as the only Tipp forward not to score.

27Mins

Tipperary 2-9 Limerick 0-8: Bubbles with his second point but Limerick answer immediately through Graeme Mulcahy.

30Mins

Tipperary 2-9 Limerick 0-9: Limerick score from the 65 after Seamus Dowling attempts to goal from a close-range free.

31Mins

Tipperary 2-9 Limerick 0-10: Seanie O’Brien scores from the wing and the gap is down to five points.

32Mins

Tipperary 2-10 Limerick 0-10: 2-2 for Callanan in the opening half now. Limerick just can’t get a handle on the Drom & Inch forward.

34Mins

Tipperary 2-11 Limerick 0-10: Bonner Maher with another nice point from play to bring his total to 0-3.

35Mins

Tipperary 2-12 Limerick 0-10: Glorious point from the sideline from John O’Dwyer there. Lovely hurling. The gap is back up to eight.

35Mins

Tipperary 2-12 Limerick 0-11: Hannon reduces the gap to seven with his third of the game.

35Mins

Tipperary 2-12 Limerick 0-12: Donal O’Grady with his first score of the half in injury time.

Substitution: Paddy Stapleton is replaced by Michael Cahill.

Limerick started the half the stronger of the two sides racing into a three point lead but since Seamus Callanan found his scoring boots, this game has looked like there was only going to be one winner and they’re wearing blue.

And the second half is under way.

36Mins

Substitution: Paul Browne (21) replaced David Breen at the half.

Tipperary 2-12 Limerick 0-12: Not a great start to the second half wide the sides sharing three wides.

39Mins

Tipperary 2-12 Limerick 0-12: Three glorious chances to score a goal but they can’t find a way past Darren Gleeson.

Yellow card for Michael Cahill as he gives away a penalty.

40Mins

Tipperary 2-12 Limerick 1-12: That’s a super penalty from Dowling and the gap is down to three. We all agree one-on-one penalties are the best thing, right?

43Mins

Tipperary 2-12 Limerick 1-12: The game’s a lot more exciting this half but the quality can’t match the intensity so far.

45Mins

Tipperary 2-12 Limerick 1-13: Dowling and Limerick have started the second half with 1-1 to no reply after he points a 65 to take his total to 1-5.

47Mins

Tipperary 2-12 Limerick 1-14: A masterful long-range free from Dowling — against the wind — and there’s just a point in it.

49Mins

Tipperary 2-13 Limerick 1-14: Controversy in the Gaelic Grounds as Mulcahy thinks he’s pointed but none of the officals agree with him. One for The Sunday Game tonight.

It’s taken Tipp 14 minutes of the second half to score through Forde.

51Mins

Tipperary 2-15 Limerick 1-14: Callanan points two quick scores to put four between the sides again.

Substitution – Kevin Downes (24) comes on for Donal O’Grady as Limerick make their second change.

53Mins

Tipperary 2-16 Limerick 1-14: Looked a foul on Seamus Callanan there by Limerick goalkeeper Barry Hennessey but Brian Gavin sees nothing wrong with it.

The full-forward goes off temporarily with Michael Breen (17) coming on in his place.

John O’Dwyer points a lovely free and all Limerick’s good work is being undone.

55Mins

Tipperary 3-16 Limerick 1-14: Jason Forde with his first ever Championship goal and that could well be that for Limerick. Tipp lead by eight.

57Mins

Tipperary 3-17 Limerick 1-15: Shane Dowling brings his total to 1-7 but it’s goals Limerick need with 13 minutes remaining.

59Mins

Tipperary 3-17 Limerick 1-15: Woodlock’s point extends Tipp’s lead again.

Tipperary 3-18 Limerick 1-16: John O’Dwyer scores his fourth point to put nine between them. Mulcahy replies down the other end.

Substitution: John Fitzgibbon (22) for Paudie O’Brien and Wayne McNamara (17) for Richie McCarthy

63Mins

Tipperary 3-19 Limerick 1-16: Another point from Bubbles as Tipp finish the game strongly.

65Mins

Tipperary 3-20 Limerick 1-16: The Limerick fans are heading for the exists and Seamus Callanan brings his personal total to 2-5 and there are 10 points in it with five to play.

70Mins

Tipperary 3-22 Limerick 1-16: Shane Bourke has just replaced Niall O’Meara and points immediately. Jason Forde follows up from the puck out

70Mins

Tipperary 3-23 Limerick 1-16: John O’Dwyer adds his seventh point as some of the Limerick players look like they’ve headed for an early exit alongside the fans.

70Mins

GOAL! Tipperary 4-23 Limerick 1-16: And there’s the icing on the cake as Michael Breen scores Tipperary’s fourth goal of the game.

For ten minutes after the break, it looked like Limerick were going to make a real game of this by getting within a single score but they lose by 16 points in the end.

Eamon O’Shea gets his first Munster SHC win and they’ll face Waterford in the final.

That’s it from me. Thanks as always for joining us but — as has been suggested — should we just skip ahead to September and let Kilkenny and Tipperary go at it again or is there life in the Championship yet?

We’ll have the match report up soon and all the reaction you’ve come to expect.

About the author:

Steve O'Rourke

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