Waterford's Tadhg De Búrca and Limerick's Gearoid Hegarty. James Crombie/INPHO

Limerick fire 0-30 in win over Waterford to book Munster final place

John Kiely’s side will meet Clare in the provincial decider.

Limerick 0-30

Waterford 2-14

ONCE AGAIN ON the day when Munster hurling round-robin business was wrapped up, Limerick provided the right answers on home soil.

It was not as nervy a finish as last year’s one-point success over Cork, Limerick ultimately achieving victory here with a degree of greater comfort as they had ten to spare over Waterford by the final whistle.

However it was still a game which generated anxious moments for the champions, their struggles to put Waterford away were compounded by the resilience of their opponents. Shane Bennett’s second goal of the game arrived in the 46th minute and that sparked a mini-revival for his team.

When substitute Patrick Fitzgerald knocked over a 55th minute score the gap had been pared to two, but Limerick stood tall from there and outscored Waterford 0-9 to 0-1 in the remainder of the action. 

Another instalment of their Munster final rivalry with Clare now awaits, Waterford’s interest in this year’s championship extinguished by defeats over the past two Sundays.

william-odonoghue-cathal-oneill-and-cian-lynch-tackle-neil-montgomery Limerick’s William O'Donoghue, Cathal O'Neill and Cian Lynch tackle Neil Montgomery of Waterford. James Crombie / INPHO James Crombie / INPHO / INPHO

Limerick entered the game stung by the nature of their late loss to Cork. The home fans were expectant, yet also concerned, with their championship interest on the line. They shipped the opening point of the game to a free from Stephen Bennett, but recovered to rattle off four without reply. But it soon became abundantly clear that for all Limerick’s good approach work and dominance around the middle, their shooting was a major problem.

In the first 15 minutes they took 13 shots on goal and only registered four scores. They finished the first half with 14 wides and the tally had swelled to 19 by full-time.

Their early profligacy provided a window into the game for Waterford. They exploited it, firing an unanswered 1-3 between the 9th and 16th minutes. The points from Stephen Bennett (two) and Paddy Leavey tied the match, before the younger Bennett raised the first green flag. Shane rose to divert a drilled head height free from older brother Stephen, the ball sailing into an unguarded part of the net.

That was as good as it got for Waterford in the first half. as Limerick slipped into a groove. They had corrected matters to an extent in attack as the action unfolded. Shane O’Brien came off the bench for the injured Seamus Flanagan and helped himself to two tidily-struck points. Kyle Hayes and Tom Morrissey hit three apiece in that opening phase.

cian-lynch-celebrares-scoring-a-point Cian Lynch celebrates scoring a point for Limerick. James Crombie / INPHO James Crombie / INPHO / INPHO

Ahead 0-14 to 1-6 at the break, Limerick looked in powerful form, Waterford’s struggles visible around the field. 

They made an attempt to rectify matters by parachuting Michael Kiely in to their second-half attack, some badly-needed heft provided. Limerick had extended their advantage to seven, 0-19 to 1-9, when Waterford received a lifeline.

Kevin Mahony drilled in a low shot that Nickie Quaid dived to block, Dessie Hutchinson kept the move alive by squaring the rebound and Bennett displayed the opportunism to bundle home his shot.

It gave Waterford some impetus. Stephen Bennett, Hutchinson, Calum Lyons and Fitzgerald all split the posts over the next ten minutes, Limerick shooting just two in response, a Gilliane free and an effort from William O’Donoghue.

The scoreline of 0-22 to 2-13 set up a grandstand finish, but Waterford saw three shots fly wide and they could not make further inroads into the Limerick advantage.

The kingpins hit back, producing a powerful scoring punch. Seven different Limerick players contributed points in the finale. If there was any doubt lingering, they removed it. Limerick march on, Waterford head to the exit door.

cathal-oneill-and-calum-lyon Cathal O'Neill and Calum Lyons. James Crombie / INPHO James Crombie / INPHO / INPHO

Scorers for Limerick: Aaron Gillane 0-7 (0-7f), Tom Morrissey 0-4, Kyle Hayes 0-3, Shane O’Brien 0-3, Cathal O’Neill 0-2, Diarmaid Byrnes 0-2 (0-1f), David Reidy 0-2, Gearóid Hegarty 0-2, Barry Nash 0-1, William O’Donoghue 0-1, Cian Lynch 0-1, Adam English 0-1, Conor Boylan 0-1.

Scorers for Waterford: Shane Bennett 2-0, Stephen Bennett 0-5 (0-4f), Calum Lyons 0-2, Dessie Hutchinson 0-2 (0-1f), Jamie Barron 0-1, Kevin Mahony 0-1, Paddy Leavey 0-1, Patrick Fitzgerald 0-1. Jack Prendergast 0-1.


1. Nickie Quaid (Effin)

2. Mike Casey (Na Piarsaigh), 3. Dan Morrissey (Ahane), 4. Barry Nash (South Liberties)

5. Diarmuid Byrnes (Patrickswell), 6. Declan Hannon (Adare), 7. Kyle Hayes (Kildimo/Pallaskenry)

8. Will O’Donoghue (Na Piarsaigh), 9. Cathal O’Neill (Crecora)

12. Tom Morrissey (Ahane), 11. Cian Lynch (Patrickswell), 10. Gearóid Hegarty (St Patrick’s)

13. Aaron Gillane (Patrickswell), 14. Séamus Flanagan (Feohanagh/Castlemahon), 15. 11. David Reidy (Dromin-Athlacca) 


22. Shane O’Brien (Kilmallock) for Flanagan (inj) (20)

19. Adam English (Doon) for Tom Morrissey (55)

24. Fergal O’Connor (Effin) for Casey (61)

17. Conor Boylan (Na Piarsaigh) for Reidy (62)

25. Donnacha Ó Dálaigh (Monaleen) for Gillane (71)


1. Shaun O’Brien (De La Salle)

3. Iarlaith Daly (Lismore), 8. Conor Prunty (Abbeyside-Ballinacourty), 4. Ian Kenny (Ballgunner)

7. Calum Lyons (Ballyduff Lower), 6. Tadhg de Búrca (Clashmore/Kinsalebeg), 5. Mark Fitzgerald (Passage)

9. Jamie Barron (Fourmilewater, joint-capt), 20. Paddy Leavey (Ballygunner)

24. Neil Montgomery (Abbeyside/Ballinacourty), 14. Stephen Bennett (Ballysaggart), 11. Jack Prendergast (Lismore)

13. Dessie Hutchinson (Ballygunner),  10. Shane Bennett (Ballysaggart), 15. Kevin Mahony (Ballygunner)


12. Michael Kiely (Abbeyside/Ballinacourty) for Montgomery (half-time)

22. Patrick Fitzgerald (Ballygunner) for Barron (47)

21. Padraig Fitzgerald (Kilrossanty) for Stephen Bennett (56)

2. Kieran Bennett (Ballysaggart) for Shane Bennett (64)

17. Jack Fagan (De La Salle) for Prendergast (67)

Referee: Michael Kennedy (Tipperary)

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