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We played our get out of jail free card admits Na Piarsaigh star

Shane Dowling’s side needed a late goal to advance.

Shane Dowling warming up.
Shane Dowling warming up.
Image: INPHO/James Crombie

LIMERICK ACE SHANE DOWLING admitted that his Na Piarsaigh side got out of jail against Loughmore-Castleiney in yesterday’s AIB Munster senior club hurling quarter-final at Semple Stadium.

Despite the fact that Loughmore played with just 13 men from the 34th minute, Na Piarsaigh needed a late goal from David Dempsey to set up a provincial semi-final showdown against Waterford champions Passage on November 10.

Na Piarsaigh had to dig desperately deep to advance, as they trailed by 0-8 to 2-12 early in the second half.

And the Shannonside representatives lost a player themselves late on when full-back Kieran Breen was dismissed.

There were frayed nerves in stoppage time as Tipperary star Noel McGrath reduced the deficit to a point, shortly after Dempsey’s second goal.

But Dowling stepped forward with a monstrous wind-assisted free that floated over the Town End crossbar to secure victory.

And Dowling, 20, admitted: “It was a poor performance on my behalf. So when the free came, I just said I had to do something.

“I had a little bit of a breeze with me and it went over. But we made very hard work of it.

“Just because we won and got out of jail, it doesn’t hide the performance. “I thought we were poor for a lot of it – they looked like they wanted it more.

“Why, I don’t know. That’s something that has to be addressed.

“We’re just lucky now to get another chance to show that we’re not that bad. Often when you win, it paints over the cracks but that certainly wasn’t good enough and we’ll have to be better.”

Meanwhile, Loughmore-Castleiney manager Declan Laffan was crushed by the manner of his side’s defeat.

But with a Clean Ireland Recycling county senior football final to look forward to next Sunday, Loughmore-Castleiney could become the first club in the history of Tipperary GAA to win a county senior hurling and football double.

Laffan reflected: “We’ll just knuckle down and get on with it because what’s what we’ll do. We’ll move on, we can’t turn back the clock. It’s gone. It’s devastating but it’s gone. We have an opportunity to create a bit of history next weekend and we’ll give it everything again. It’s been a long year, highs and lows. Today’s a real low.”

‘It’s really hurt me to the core in terms of some of our efforts’ – Michael O’Loughlin

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Jackie Cahill

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