Brian Cody and Mattie Kenny remain in charge of Kilkenny and Dublin.
Brian Cody and Mattie Kenny remain in charge of Kilkenny and Dublin.

Preview: Weekend's Leinster and Munster SHC action

Leinster Senior Hurling Championship

Saturday May 14

Laois v Galway, MW Hire O'Moore Park, 5pm

Westmeath v Wexford, TEG Cusack Park, 6.30pm

Dublin v Kilkenny, Parnell Park, 7pm

Parnell Park provides the backdrop for an eagerly anticipated and crucial encounter.

Three wins on the spin ensures Mattie Kenny's Dublin, with Donal Burke efficient, currently top the table, but two vital fixtures remain against Kilkenny and Galway.

How will Brian Cody's outfit respond following a harrowing loss in Salthill.

That afternoon in Pearse Stadium illustrated Eoin Cody's relevance to the Kilkenny cause.

Despite trailing by seven points Kilkenny levelled before Conor Cooney's last gasp free.

Ultimately it means Kilkenny need a positive result at the Donnycarney venue against a pumped up Dublin.

In Portlaoise Laois will be eager to cause an upset against Henry Shefflin's Galway.

Galway forward Brian Concannon.
Galway forward Brian Concannon.

Joseph Cooney, Thomas Monaghan, and Brian Concannon have starred for Galway in the Leinster Championship so far.

Séamus 'Cheddar' Plunkett's Laois have looked to Enda Rowland and PJ Scully for inspiration at opposite ends of the pitch.

Defeats to Dublin, Kilkenny, and Wexford mean Laois want to finish the round robin series strongly.

Having drawn with Galway and lost to Dublin on home turf, Wexford overcame Laois.

Lee Chin's availability is a significant boost, while Conor McDonald and Rory O'Connor have been prominent for Darragh Egan's team.

Westmeath, managed by the well regarded Joe Fortune, continue to be prompted by Killian Doyle, who has contributed 0-39 in three games.

Saturday week's game between Laois and Westmeath will be revealing.

Dessie Hutchinson is an influential figure for Waterford.
Dessie Hutchinson is an influential figure for Waterford.

Munster Senior Hurling Championship

Sunday May 15

Waterford v Cork, Walsh Park, 2pm

Clare v Limerick, Cusack Park, 4pm

After losing to Limerick, Waterford will be striving to summon a response against Cork at Walsh Park.

The fact that Kieran Kingston's team were beaten by Limerick and Clare merely adds to the importance of this game.

Cork know that an improved performance will be necessary to remain in the race for Championship honours.

In the Allianz Hurling League decider last month Waterford, inspired by Stephen Bennett, produced a splendid performance to defeat Cork 4-20 to 1-23.

Dessie Hutchinson has been influential in Waterford's first two matches registering 1-8 from play.

Much debate and interest surrounds what approach and style Cork will implement, but eking out a victory is critical.

Diarmuid Byrnes continues to impress for Limerick.
Diarmuid Byrnes continues to impress for Limerick.

In Cusack Park neighbours Clare and Limerick, both enjoying productive campaigns, collide.

John Kiely's decorated team finished with a real flourish to claim the spoils against a gritty Tipperary.

Aaron Gillane's attacking pedigree is well documented, while the promise of Cathal O'Neill and the determination of Tom Morrissey bodes well.

Diarmaid Byrnes' sweet long range striking is reflected with a remarkable 0-15 from three contests.

Clare, though, have reason to be satisfied too considering the manner of the wins over Tipperary and Cork in Thurles.

Brian Lohan has also quietly introduced some new and returning players to good effect.

Tony Kelly's class will always be central, while Peter Duggan's aerial threat should test Limerick.