Langers to Lead Limerick from Pillar to Post
Cork v Limerick
TJ Ryan commented that reigning Munster champions Limerick used their dismissal on the betting front as motivation to beat 2/7 shots Tipperary back in May. Five weeks on and they face 4/9 shots Cork on Rebel soil. Is that insulting enough to get them going again?
Limerick’s barnstorming finish saw them record a fantastic two point win over Tipp in Thurles. Three points down with two minutes left, the Treatysiders rocked Tipp with 1-02 before the long whistle. It was justice for Limerick who were wrongly denied a Graeme Mulcahy goal when trailing by two points minutes earlier.
Cork have the benefit of three championship games, thanks to a first round draw with Waterford on 1-21 apiece. Cork fought back from nine points down to take it to a replay they won by double scores (0-28 to 0-14). Having conceded 0-9 from frees in the first game, Cork limited the Deise to 0-3 from frees this time out.
Cork then beat Clare by five, 2-23 to 2-18, as James McGrath drew the wrath of Davy Fitz as the Rebels’ Pat Horgan hit 2-11 from frees while Clare scored a measly 0-5.
Big David Breen replaces Sean Toibin in Limerick’s full-forward line while Cork remain unchanged from the side that beat Clare.
The battle of the free-takers will be central to this game. Pat Horgan and Shane Dowling are ace marksmen as testified by their last match contributions, 2-11 and 2-9 respectively.
Looking at Cork’s low concession rate since the nine scored by Waterford on the first day (three in the replay, and five pointed frees against Clare) it can be assumed that JBM has worked hard with them on disciplined tackling. Limerick only coughed up four pointed frees against Tipp in Thurles, so it’ll be vital that the chances on offer are taken.
Aside from the free-takers, Cork look to have the advantage in scorers. They had ten different scorers in their replay hammering of Waterford, up from six on day one. Against Clare they had eight scorers. Daniel Kearney has his eye in with 0-3 from midfield in Cork’s last two games while Alan Cadogan has also come on for matches, hitting 0-3 against Clare.
If Cork can manage to keep the free count down as low as they did in their last two games it’s difficult to see Limerick hit the mid-20’s score-line they’re likely to need to win.
Though 4/9 about the home side is by no means an ‘un-backable price’, the 5/6 about them leading at half time and full time fits the bill.
They should be considerably more up to speed than Limerick, just as Galway were initially against Tipp last weekend. However, unlike Galway, Cork shouldn’t be fatigued. The exceptions are their dual stars, Walsh and Cahalane, who have had to physically and mentally recover from their Munster Final flop last weekend.
Aidan Walsh’s power and fielding was a perfect compliment to Kearney’s movement in their lowering of the Banner.
Limerick are champions and have some teak tough leaders in their ranks, but Cork should have enough to start well and hold on.