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Thursday 26 January 2023 Dublin: 6°C
# Young Guns
6 players to watch in Limerick and Tipperary's Munster minor hurling final
The two counties will battle it out for provincial silverware at Semple Stadium on Sunday.

1. Brian McGrath (Tipperary)

McGrath is the latest member of the Loughmore-Castleiney clan to make his mark in the colours of Tipperary.

Younger brother of Noel and John, and cousin of Liam, Brian looks set to emerge as another key player for the county in years to come.

He’s anchoring the pivotal centre back position for Tipp and the dual star is an accomplished long-range striker.

McGrath will hope to avoid Munster final heartbreak for the second successive weekend after lining out for the footballers against Kerry in Killarney.

Noel McGrath and Ciaran Sheehan 13/7/2008 Lorraine O'Sullivan / INPHO Brian McGrath is following in the footsteps of his brother Noel (pictured). Lorraine O'Sullivan / INPHO / INPHO

2. Peter Casey (Limerick)

Yes, we know we’ve mentioned him before but how can we ignore Peter Casey?

He settled the semi-final against Cork with a dramatic late goal to finish with a personal haul of 1-6.

He was also Limerick’s leading scorer in their playoff victory against Waterford, a win that rekindled a faltering campaign for Leo O’Connor’s Shannonsiders.

They lost to Cork first time out but six points from Casey saw Limerick past Waterford, before he had a decisive say against the young Rebels.

Peter Casey Donall Farmer / INPHO Donall Farmer / INPHO / INPHO

3. Lyndon Fairbrother (Tipperary)

Fairbrother was brought on as sub in the first half of Tipp’s quarter-final victory over Waterford and hasn’t looked back since.

He shot two points from play against the Déise and that cameo display earned the JK Brackens man a start against Clare in the last four.

The lively corner forward didn’t disappoint either as he collected five points, including four from placed balls.

Keen observers of underage hurling will also recall a four-point haul from Fairbrother for Our Lady’s Templemore against Midleton CBS in last year’s Dean Ryan final.

Liam Cahill carries his son Billy Cahill Cathal Noonan / INPHO Liam Cahill takes charge of the Tipperary minor hurling team on Sunday. Cathal Noonan / INPHO / INPHO

4. Seamus Flanagan (Limerick)

Flanagan is hoping to collect a third successive Munster minor hurling medal tomorrow afternoon.

The Feoghanagh-Castlemahon player was a member of the 2013 panel before nailing down a regular stating place last year.

Limerick may have lost their opening fixture in 2015 against Cork but operating in attack, Flanagan finished with 1-4, including four pointed frees.

Flanagan, who can play at centre or full forward, added a point in the victory over Waterford but was held scoreless against Cork as Limerick battled to victory.

Seamus Flanagan celebrates the final whistle Morgan Treacy / INPHO Morgan Treacy / INPHO / INPHO

5. Tommy Nolan (Drom & Inch)

Tipperary’s ‘fox in the box’ scored a lovely goal against Clare in the Munster semi-final, controlling Alan Tynan’s delivery with his first touch, and swiping home with his second.

Nolan is another highly-rated dual star who featured against Kerry in last Sunday’s Munster minor football final defeat.

And he appears to be a man on a mission as the Drom & Inch starlet was one of three Tipperary players sent off against Clare in last year’s Munster hurling semi-final defeat.

A winner’s medal would help to banish any lingering memories from 2014 and ease the heartache from last Sunday.

Tommy Nolan dejected Ryan Byrne / INPHO Tommy Nolan was left devastated by last Sunday's Munster minor football final defeat to Kerry. Ryan Byrne / INPHO / INPHO

6. Thomas Grimes (Limerick)

Grimes was very much to the fore as Limerick launched that late semi-final fightback against Cork.

The Na Piarsaigh dynamo has been named at midfield for Sunday’s decider with Tipperary and has the potential to hurt the opposition with hard running.

2014 Harty Cup winner Grimes is another survivor from last year’s Munster championship winning team and he lined out in the All-Ireland final against Kilkenny at Croke Park.

He’s made the switch from wing-back on that occasion to midfield now and blessed with a tremendous engine and scoring touch, Grimes is a player that will need watching from a Tipperary viewpoint.

Thomas Grimes and Robbie Hanley celebrate Donall Farmer / INPHO Thomas Grimes and Robbie Hanley celebrate last year's All-Ireland minor semi-final victory over Galway. Donall Farmer / INPHO / INPHO

Originally published Saturday at 07.00

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