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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…


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)


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…


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)


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?


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


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


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


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


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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.


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


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


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


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


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.


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


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.


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


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.


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.


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.


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?


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.


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.


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


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.


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.


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.


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.


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


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


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


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.


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


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.


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