SHC Preview | Na Piarsaigh and Kilmallock the pick of the second round ties in the Limerick SHC

After a busy opening weekend, the Limerick SHC second round takes place this weekend.

The repeat of the 2017 Limerick SHC final is the pick of the second round ties this weekend as Kilmallock take on Na Piarsaigh in Doon.

Five years ago, Na Piarsaigh were comprehensive in that final win over Kilmallock but the Balbec come into the game as defending champions.

Elsewhere, Patrickswell and Doon will look to bounce back after day one losses when they face Ahane and Adare respectively.

In group two, Mungret St Pauls and Ballybrown meet in a clash of round one winners, Kildimo Pallaskenry take on South Liberties while Garryspillane face Blackrock.

Na Piarsaigh v Kilmallock

Saturday 6 August at 7pm in Doon

The standout tie of the round pits defending champions Kilmallock against 2020 kingpins Na Piarsaigh. These teams have dominated the Limerick hurling landscape for the last decade with ten of the last twelve championships headed their way (Na Piarsaigh x6, Kilmallock x4).

Both started their campaigns with wins, Kilmallock running riot against Patrickswell in a repeat of the 2021 final while Na Piarsaigh left it late to get the W against Doon.

There will be a host of intercounty talent in action when these sides meet and it is one that is very hard to call. Kilmallock will be keen to lay down a marker against a side that have come out on top in the majority of their recent clashes while Nap are favoured to annex the title for the seventh time since 2011.

Limerick Senior Hurling Championship Semi-Final, LIT Gaelic Grounds, Limerick 22/9/2019 Kilmallock vs Na Piarsaigh Na Piarsaigh’s Kevin Downes with Aaron Costello of Kilmallock Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Oisin Keniry

A mouthwatering contest and one that will be streamed live.

Patrickswell v Ahane

Saturday 6 August at 7pm in Caherconlish

Both sides will be looking for a win when Patrickswell take on Ahane on Saturday evening. Patrickswell were 14-point losers against Kilmallock while Ahane were held to a draw against Adare.

Without the likes of Cian Lynch, Kevin O’Brien and Josh Considine as well as the retired Brian Murray, the ‘Well looked limited and will need to find a better strategy without those ahead of the Ahane clash. The East Limerick side will rue missed chances in their draw with Adare, hitting 19 wides over the course of the hour.

Last year, Patrickswell were comfortable 3-21 to 0-17 winners as Ahane were resigned to a second successive relegation final. But the gap seems to have shortened between the teams with Ahane surely sensing blood after the opening weekend.

Doon v Adare

Friday 5 August at 7pm in Claughaun

The action in the Limerick SHC kicks off on Friday evening when Doon and Adare meet on the Childers Rd. Again it is a meeting of winless teams, Doon losing to Na Piarsaigh and Adare playing out a stalemate with Ahane.

Doon will have huge regrets from their loss to the Caherdavin outfit as they led for 50 minutes. Dean Coleman’s early goal gave them the initiative which they maintained for a five point advantage with ten to play.

But a late burst saw Nap overturn that for a 2-20 to 1-18 win as Doon’s search for a victory over the City side continues. They now must turn attention to an Adare side who will have their own regrets from the draw with Ahane.

Pat Ryan gets his strike away as David O’Mahony looks on in the Limerick SHC tie between Doon and Adare. CREDIT: Sport Action Photography.

Adare were promoted from group two last year and missed out on the opportunity to make a statement in round one. This will be the first meeting since 2020 when they played out a memorable draw in the Gaelic Grounds.

Mungret St Pauls v Ballybrown

Saturday 6 August at 7pm in Claughaun

A meeting of two first round winners, this is arguably the pick of the contests in group two of the Limerick SHC. Such were the results in the first round, it is safe to say that the winner of this meeting will have one foot in the knockout stages.

Ballybrown were preseason favourites to finish in the top two having suffered relegation last year. The city side should have beaten Kilmallock in the group stages last year that would have booked a quarter-final spot, but were reeled in by the eventual champions. This year, they started with a bang, seeing off Blackrock with minimal fuss and they will look forward to a first meeting with Mungret St Pauls since 2012.

On that occasion, Ballybrown were 1-20 to 0-9 victors as they went on to claim the Intermediate title. Mungret followed suit in 2016, but had to negotiate through the Premier Intermediate tanks, claiming the title in devastating fashion last October. And in their return to the senior ranks, they defeated Kildimo Pallaskenry, without a couple of key men including All-Ireland winner Rory Duff.

Ballybrown will prove a step up but the meeting of the city sides is an intriguing one.

Kildimo Pallaskenry v South Liberties

Saturday 6 August at 7pm in Ballybrown

For last year’s County Cup champions, a win on Saturday is the minimum following their round one loss to Mungret St Pauls. Outside of Kyle Hayes, KP failed to fire and will need more from the supporting cast if they are to get their season back on track against Liberties.

6 October 2019; Kyle Hayes of Kildimo/Pallaskenry during the Limerick County Premier Intermediate Club Hurling Championship Final match between Blackrock and Kildimo/Pallaskenry at LIT Gaelic Grounds in Limerick. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

In the opening round, Liberties did enough to see off Garryspillane, with a 1-19 to 0-20 victory. That was their first championship game since they pushed the eventual champions Kilmallock to extra-time in their quarter-final last Autumn. On that day, the East side hit the net five times but couldn’t shake off the Balbec.

They will take confidence from that result and their first round win but in KP they are facing a very dangerous outfit who have only lost to Mungret and Adare since 2016.

Garryspillane v Blackrock

Friday 5 August at 7pm in Kilmallock

If last year’s meeting is anything to go by, this one could go either way. In 2021, Blackrock recovered from a heavy loss to South Liberties to defeat Garryspillane by three points. The Bouncers then went on to beat Liberties, condemning Blackrock to the relegation spots.

This year, both started with defeats, Garryspillane falling to Liberties by a pair of points while Blackrock were on the wrong side of 1-18 to 0-13 result against Ballybrown. And even though it is only round two, this could already be seen as a relegation four-pointer.

Garryspillane were victorious over Blackrock for five successive years in the Premier Intermediate ranks and will look for more of the same while the Rockies will hope to emulate the result of their most recent clash.

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