“We’re still here” | John Kiely defiant after booking Munster final spot

Kiely said he was “delighted” that his team’s “average performance level is up,” but conceded that his players will have to work on “the shooting aspect”.

John Kiely was impressed with his side’s defensive display against Waterford on Sunday afternoon, as Limerick booked their place in a sixth consecutive Munster SHC final with a 10-point win in the TUS Gaelic Grounds.

Kiely’s men will now lock horns with Clare once more, the tie fixed for June 9th in FBD Semple Stadium.

Speaking after Sunday’s game, the Limerick boss said that “possession is one thing, dominance is another,” as he reflected on the events on the Ennis Road.

“It’s all very well having that amount of possession and that amount of opportunities to score, yet you end of three quarters of the way through the game with only a couple of points in it. Possession is one thing, dominance is another, ultimately you’ve got to get the scores on the board. When you leak a goal or two like that, it leaves the door open for the opposition to get a bit of oxygen and to come at you and hurt you, maybe stun you in that stage of the game. Our response to the goals was very good.”

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Na Piarsaigh’s Mike Casey returned from a hamstring injury to take his place in the full-backline alongside Dan Morrissey and Barry Nash, and Kiely said he was “delighted to see him play well” having completed “a fantastic rehab”.

In fact, the Galbally native was pleased with his defensive unit as a whole, saying he thought they “were really solid” and “very mean”.

“Delighted with him, you’re always concerned when fellas are coming back from injury, will they hold up? In fairness he had done a fantastic rehab, he had been very strong we could see that he was very fresh in the last two weeks. We never had any concerns for him really come into the game, just delighted to see him play well. As a unit I think defensively we were super, I thought we were really solid, gave up very few chances. Okay, they’ll be disappointed with the couple of goals, but I think in the overall scheme of things we were very mean as a defence today.”

26 May 2024; Barry Nash of Limerick in action against Neil Montgomery, centre, and Darragh Lyons of Waterford during the Munster GAA Hurling Senior Championship Round 5 match between Limerick and Waterford at TUS Gaelic Grounds in Limerick Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

So Limerick have made it to there sixth consecutive Munster SHC final, although this is the first time they have qualified top of the round robin format.

Kiely said he was “delighted” that his team’s “average performance level is up,” but conceded that his players will have to work on “the shooting aspect”.

“What I do know is that our performance levels are higher than what they were last year and the year before, when you look at the data that’s there. It’s the most important part of it for me that our average performance level is up a nice little bit, delighted with that. Our trajectory is upwards as well, so we just have to keep going after those games now, we know the shooting aspect is one we’re going to have to go back and reengage for the next two weeks. There was a lot said about us needing to be knocked out from the Munster Championship, we’re still here. Great sense of achievement after coming through the round robin in the manner that we have, there were dips here and there but at the same time I think we’re in a good place to push on.”

11 June 2023; Cathal Malone of Clare gets to the ball ahead of William O’Donoghue of Limerick during the Munster GAA Hurling Championship Final match between Clare and Limerick at TUS Gaelic Grounds in Limerick. Photo by Daire Brennan/Sportsfile

Limerick will meet Clare in the Munster SHC final for the third time in a row on June 9th, as they look to make it six Mick Mackey Cups on the bounce.


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