Limerick through to Co-Op Superstores Munster SHL Final
Co-Op Superstores Munster Senior Hurling League
LIMERICK 1-27 CLARE 1-19
By Declan Rooney in Sixmilebridge
David Reidys goal 13 minutes from time wrapped up victory for Limerick and set up a Co-Op Superstores Munster Hurling League final against Cork next weekend.
In front of 3,312 at a packed Sixmilebridge, Limerick dominated for long stretches, but with Niall Deasy keeping Clare in touch from placed balls, it wasnt until the closing stages that Limerick made sure of victory.
Reidy struck 1-12 for John Kielys side, while Adrian Breen and Tom Morrissey combined for eight points from play in an impressive outing, while Aron Shanaghers late goal only softened Limericks winning margin.
After winning the toss and electing to play into the strong wind Limerick would have been thrilled with their opening quarter, but they slackened off in the approach to half time. By the 16thminute the Munster champions were 0-9 to 0-1 ahead, while only four points separated the sides at the interval as Deasys frees kept Clare in touch.
Clare were outclassed in that first 20 minutes as Limericks half-back line of Barry Nash, Dan Morrissey and Paddy OLoughlin totally shut out their opponents. With accurate passing out from the back, the Limerick inside duo of Adrian Breen and Darren OConnell caused havoc with a good supply of ball.
Breen got Limerick up and running after less than a minute, and although Deasy levelled Limerick hit eight unanswered points as Clares wide tally mounted and the standard of their general play was poor at best.
A couple of Reidy frees worked Limerick into a lead, but there was some excellent points from open play too with Breen, Tom Morrissey and OConnell in particular finishing off great moves for points.
It took a great score from halfway from wing back Stephen OHalloran to light Clares fuse in the 18thminute, and after Aron Shanagher also found the target, two excellent points in the space of 30 seconds from Diarmuid Ryan meant Clare did well to only trail by 0-13 to 0-9.
Tony Kelly was a late call up to the starting side for his first action of the season, but he had a quiet introduction to the game, although his side started the second half well thanks to points from Deasy and Michael ONeill.
But Breen was on form from placed balls and he hit two of his sides first three points of the half, the other coming from Tom Morrisseys excellent effort from the left.
Colin Guilfoyle struck back for Clare, but either side of Breen frees Morrissey gave Limerick a 0-9 to 0-14 lead after 52 minutes, and after Graeme Mulcahys break Reidys ground stroke found the bet to clinch the win for Limerick.
Shanagher flicked Kellys delivery to the net three minutes from the end, but Limerick were never in danger of losing out.
In today's other Co-Op Superstores Munster SHL match, Waterford defeated Kerry by 4-23 to 1-10.
Scorers for Limerick: David Reidy 1-12 9f, 165, Adrian Breen 0-4, Tom Morrissey 0-4, Ronan Connolly 0-2, Josh Considine 0-2, Darragh ODonovan 0-1, Darren OConnell 0-1, Robbie Hanley 0-1.
Scorers for Clare: Niall Deasy 0-11 8f, 265, Aron Shanagher 1-1, Diarmuid Ryan 0-2, Stephen OHalloran 0-1, Michael ONeill 0-1, Tony Kelly 0-1, Colin Guilfoyle 0-1, Liam Corry 0-1
LIMERICK: Barry Hennessy; Tom Condon, Mike Casey, Aaron Costello; Barry Nash, Dan Morrissey, Paddy OLoughlin; Ronan Connolly, Robbie Hanley; Darragh ODonovan, Tom Morrissey, Conor Boylan; Adrian Breen, David Reidy, Darren OConnell. Subs: Josh Considine for Hanley 53, David Dempsey for Boylan 55, Graeme Mulcahy for OConnell 55, Brian OGrady for Condon 61, Brian Ryan for Reidy 65.
CLARE: Eibhear Quilligan; Paidi Fitzpatrick, Conor Cleary, Aidan McCarthy; Michael OMalley, Jack Browne, Stephen OHalloran; Tony Kelly, Shane Golden c; Aron Shanagher, Ryan Taylor, Diarmuid Ryan; Michael ONeill, Niall Deasy, Colin Guilfoyle. Subs: Domhnall McMahon for Ryan 43, Stiofan McMahon for ONeill 43, Gary Cooney for Taylor 54, Liam Corry for OMalley 58.
Referee: Kevin Joran Tipperary.