Limerick triumph over Clare in Munster Hurling Cup Final
Co-Op Superstores Munster Hurling Cup Final
Limerick 0-27 Clare 0-18
By Eoin Brennan at Cusack Park
Limerick not only retained their Munster Cup crown but just as significantly secured a first Shannonside derby victory over Clare in Cusack Park in eleven years on Sunday afternoon.
The first of three guaranteed clashes in Ennis in 2022, it was as much as psychological boost as anything else as the reigning All-ireland champions had suffered an eleven point reverse in their last outing at the venue in the Munster Championship in 2018.
The roles would be reversed this time around as Limerick, despite 19 wides, impressed with ten different scorers. The hosts began on the front-foot thanks in the main to three David Reidy points at 0-3 to 0-1 by the seventh minute but were quickly turned over by a more physically dominant Limerick who settled into their stride with a six point unanswered rally including two monster Colin Coughlan points on their way to a 0-8 to 0-5 first quarter cushion.
Cathal Malone passed up a goal chance to stop the rot but any brief resistance would be punished by a rampant Limerick that were guided by David Reidy frees as they finished the half with nine of the last eleven points at 0-17 to 0-09.
The only way was up for the hosts but replacement Ryan Taylor would be denied any early goal as Limerick managed to weather the storm and actually soar eleven clear entering the final ten minutes at 0-24 to 0-13 following scoring bursts through Reidy (4) and midfielder Brian O’Grady.
Clare’s fresher legs that included scoring debuts for Patrick Crotty and Ronin Mounsey did lessen the final damage but Limerick’s young guns were equally effective with Adam English and Cathal O’Neill also getting in on the scoring action to maintain their provincial dominance.
Scorers for Limerick: David Reidy (0-12, 11f); Darren O’Connell (0-3); Colin Coughlan, Oisin O’Reilly, Brian O’Grady, Adam English (0-2 each); Pat Ryan, Gearoid Hegarty, Richie English, Cathal O’Neill (0-1 each)
Scorers for Clare: David Reidy (0-9, 6f, 2’65); Diarmuid Ryan, Cathal Malone, Mark Rodgers, Robin Mounsey (1’65) (0-2 each); Patrick Crotty (0-1)
Limerick: David McCarthy; Barry Nash, Dan Morrissey, Richie English; Colin Coughlan, Ronan Connolly, Paddy O’Loughlin; Brian O'Grady, William O’Donoghue; Cathal O’Neill, David Reidy, Gearoid Hegarty; Oisín O’Reilly, Pat Ryan, Darren O’Connell Subs: Adam English for Ryan (46), Rory Duff for O’Donoghue (54), Conor Boylan for Hegarty (54)
Clare: Eibhear Quilligan; Mike Gough, Conor Cleary, Paul Flanagan; Diarmuid Ryan Jason McCarthy, Aaron Fitzgerald; Jack Browne, Paddy Donnellan; Cathal Malone, David Reidy, Shane Golden; Domhnall McMahon, Mark Rodgers, Gary Cooney Subs: Ryan Taylor for Golden (HT), David McInerney for Donnellan (HT), Shane Meehan for McMahon (44), Darragh Lohan for Fitzgerald (46), Patrick Crotty for Cooney (52), Robin Mounsey for McCarthy (53)
Referee: Conor Doyle (Tipperary)