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Dublin: 3 °C Sunday 16 February, 2020

Limerick claw back 10-point deficit to carve out thrilling win over hosts Tipp

Last year’s league champions trailed the All-Ireland winners by 0-14 to 0-4 before producing a stirring second-half fightback.

Dan Morrissey celebrates at full-time.
Dan Morrissey celebrates at full-time.
Image: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

Limerick 2-14

Tipperary 0-18

John Fallon reports from Semple Stadium

LIMERICK CAME FROM 10 points down just after half-time to carve out a thrilling win in the Allianz League at Semple Stadium.

Goals from Aaron Gillane and Gearoid Hegarty paved the way for the comeback win, albeit Tipperary had a chance to snatch it at the death only for a free from Jason Forde to be deflected onto the crossbar and cleared in the final play.

Tipperary looked much more sharp in the opening half and were good value for their 0-13 to 0-4 interval lead in a game played in ideal conditions.

Forde led the way with 0-7, five of them frees one from a sideline, while Jake Morris chipped in with a couple of good points from play.

John McGrath also looked sharp and aside from picking off two points was also instrumental in a few other scores, with debutant Paddy Cadell landing one from distance.

sean-finn-celebrates-at-the-final-whistle Limerick sub Sean Finn pumps the air as the final whistle blows. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

The quality of ball into the Limerick forwards was poor and the Tipp defence got on top, with only a couple of good points from Tom Morrissey lighting up their opening half display.

Indeed, Limerick would be further behind had goalkeeper Barry Hennessy not pulled off a good save to deny Morris after 16 minutes when he did well to get to his low shot to the bottom-left corner.

But it was a different story after the break as Limerick came out with all guns blazing and outscored Tipp by 1-6 to 0-2 in the third quarter.

Limerick chipped away at the lead with three points from Gillane, Dempsey, while Diarmuid Byrnes hit one from 75 metres after some good passing out of defence.

tempers-flare-between-the-sides-during-the-game Limerick came out fighting in the second half. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

But the key score came after 49 minutes when sub William O’Donoghue soloed through and set up Gillane, the Patrickswell man blasting it low into the bottom-right corner.

That helped cut the gap to 0-15 to 1-10 at the end of the third quarter, with McGrath getting his third point in response for Tipp.

Another Forde free pushed Tipp three in front but then O’Donoghue again was instrumental in setting up a Limerick goal. He found fellow replacement Hegarty who dispatched the ball neatly and levelled the match at 0-16 to 2-10.

The sides swapped points but then Gillane and Byrnes landed key scores, and when Forde reduced the gap to the minimum, Seamus Flanagan put two between them again in the dying moments.

john-mcgrath-and-barry-nash Limerick's Barry Nash was named man of the match. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

There was still time for Tipp to snatch it: Jake Morris was hauled down about 20 yards from goal, giving Forde the chance to strike for goal with a last-gasp free after William O’Donoghue received his marching orders by way of a second yellow.

Forde’s low effort was partially blocked, deflecting onto the crossbar and away before Limerick emerged with the sliotar and victory.

Scorers for Limerick: Aaron Gillane 1-6 (0-4f, 0-1 sideline), David Dempsey 0-3, Gearoid Hegarty 1-0, Tom Morrissey 0-2, Diarmuid Byrnes 0-2 (0-1ff), Seamus Flanagan 0-1.

Scorers for Tipperary: Jason Forde 0-10 (0-8f, 0-1 sideline), Jake Morris 0-3, John McGarth 0-3, Paddy Cadell 0-1, Willie Connors 0-1.


1. Barry Hennessy (Kilmallock)

2. Tom Condon (Knockaderry)
3. Mike Casey (Na Piarsaigh)
4. Richie English (Doon)

5. Diarmuid Byrnes (Patrickswell)
6. Dan Morrissey (Ahane)
7. Barry Nash (South Liberties)

8. Robbie Hanley (Kilmallock)
9. Cian Lynch (Patrickswell)

10. Darragh O’Donovan (Doon)
11. Tom Morrissey (Ahane)
12. David Reidy (Dromin-Athlacca)

13. Aaron Gillane (Patrickswell)
14. Graeme Mulcahy (Kilmallock)
15. David Dempsey (Na Piarsaigh)


20. Sean Finn (Bruff) for Casey (24)
25. William O’Donoghue (Na Piarsaigh) for Hanley (28)
23. Gearóid Hegarty (St Patrick’s) for Reidy (49)
21. Seamus Flanagan (Feohanagh-Castlemahon) for Mulcahy (70)


1. Brian Hogan (Lorrha-Dorrha)

2. Cathal Barrett (Holycross-Ballycahill)
3. Ronan Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)
4. Seán O’Brien (Newport)

6. Séamus Kennedy (St Mary’s)
7. Padraic Maher (Thurles Sarsfields)
12. Bryan O’Meara (Holycross-Ballycahill)

5. Alan Flynn (Kiladangan)
9. Paddy Cadell (JK Bracken’s)

10. Willie Connors (Kiladangan)
11. John McGrath (Loughmore-Castleiney)
8. Michael Breen (Ballina)

13. Mark Kehoe (Kilsheelan-Kilcash)
14. Jason Forde (Silvermines)
15. Jake Morris (Nenagh Éire Óg)


25. Dylan Quirke (Clonoulty-Rossmore) for Kehoe (55)
20. Paul Flynn (Kiladangan) for Connors (55)
23. Craig Morgan (Kilruane MacDonaghs) for Flynn (60)
19. Cian Darcy (Kilruane MacDonaghs) for Breen (66)
22. Jamie Moloney (Drom & Inch) for Kennedy (69)

Referee: Patrick Murphy (Carlow)

Bernard Jackman joins Murray Kinsella and Gavan Casey to discuss the ever-greying Saracens saga and pick his personal Ireland XV to face Scotland

Source: The42 Rugby Weekly/SoundCloud

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John Fallon

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