Limerick march through to Munster final after Waterford success

Limerick reached a sixth Munster final in a row after eventually shaking off Waterford to defeat their Munster rivals by ten points.

On a far from straightforward afternoon, Limerick made sure their hunt for more honors continues, despite a wasteful afternoon on home soil.

In the end, it was death by 1000 cuts for Waterford, as Limerick fired over the magic thirty-points, despite hitting 19-wides. Waterford clung on in the clash for a period, with two Shane Bennett goals keeping them in touch for long spells.

In the end, there was points from subs Adam English, Conor Boylan and Shane O’Brien to push Waterford aside. John Kiely’s men led, wind-assisted, by 0-14 to 1-6 with Cathal O’Neill, Kyle Hayes and Gearoid Hegarty influential.

There was a couple of early Déise scores which would have encouraged them, but then arrived points from Hegarty, Aaron Gillane and Cathal O’Neill. Waterford’s second goal made it a one score game.

After an initial save from Nickie Quaid Waterford scrambled the ball home, with Dessie Hutchinson’s pull finding Bennett for his second. But Davy Fitzgerald’s men were unable to sustain a scoring burst.

Instead, Gillane, William O’Donnoghue and O’Brien fired over efforts. The latter of those the third from debutant O’Brien. He’d replaced the injured Flanagan after just 20 minutes.

In the end, Limerick won too much breaking ball, too many puck-outs and got away too many shots.

This sets up a three-peat Munster final with Clare, in Thurles on June 9th, while Cork come through in second place.

In Leinster, Dublin and Kilkenny will meet in the decider, after their wins over Galway and Wexford.
Henry Shefflin’s Galway are now gone, with Wexford advancing in third spot.



Scorers for Waterford: Shane Bennett 2-0; Stephen Bennett 0-5 (0-4 frees); Calum Lyons,
Dessie Hutchinson (0-1 free) 0-2 each; Paddy Leavy, Jamie Barron, Jack Prendergast, Patrick Fitzgerald, Kevin Mahony 0-1 each.
Limerick: Nickie Quaid; Mike Casey, Dan Morrissey, Barry Nash; Diarmaid Byrnes, Declan Hannon (Capt), Kyle Hayes; Cian Lynch, William O’Donoghue; Gearoid Hegarty, Cathal O’Neill, Tom Morrissey; David Reidy, Seamus Flanagan, Aaron Gillane.

Subs: Shane O’Brien for Flanagan (20); Adam English for T. Morrissey (55); Fergal O’Connor for Casey (61); Conor Boylan for Reidy (62); Donnacha Ó Dálaigh for Gillane (71).

Waterford: Shaun O’Brien; Conor Prunty, Iarlaith Daly, Ian Kenny; Mark Fitzgerald, Tadhg de Burca, Calum Lyons; Paddy Leavy, Neil Montgomery; Shane Bennett, Jamie Barron (J/C), Jack Prendergast; Dessie Hutchinson, Stephen Bennett, Kevin Mahony.

Subs: Michael Kiely for Sh Bennett (blood – 25-26); Michael Kiely for Montgomery (half-time); Patrick Fitzgerald for Barron (46); Pádraig Fitzgerald for St Bennett (56); Kieran Bennett for Sh Bennett (64); Jack Fagan for Prendergast (68).
 

Referee: Michael Kennedy (Tipperary).

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