HURLING

Tipperary Minor Hurlers reach the end of the road as Limerick turn the screw

Eamonn Wynne

Reporter:

Eamonn Wynne

Email:

ewynne@nationalist.ie

Jack Leamy

Jack Leamy was the Tipperary minor team's top scorer when they were beaten by Limerick on Sunday

Limerick 3-24 Tipperary 1-15

Tipperary's faint hopes of reaching the Munster Minor Hurling Championship were crushed when they suffered a heavy defeat by Limerick at Semple Stadium on Sunday.
To reach the decider, Tipp needed to win by a big margin and hope that Cork would do the same against Clare.
But it was evident from an early stage that they had a mountain to climb against a sharper Limerick side, who will meet Clare in the final on June 30.
Tipp were in big trouble at half-time, when they trailed by 2-13 to 0-9. Limerick struck for their first goal in the ninth minute when the outstanding Cathal O'Neill, despite being under pressure, managed to shoot low to the net.
Limerick were ahead by seven points when they piled more misery on Tipp in the 29th minute. This time Liam Lynch raced away from Tipp's Ed Connolly and passed to the unmarked Aidan O'Connor, who had no difficulty shooting their second goal.
Limerick's Patrick Kirby, who scored the last point of the first half, shot the first point of the second after just eight seconds. By the 36th minute, Limerick's lead was unassailable, when Adam English cut in from the wing and planted a low shot in the net to open up a 13-points lead.
Despite playing second fiddle to their rampant opponents, Tipp never threw in the towel and were rewarded with a consolation goal from substitute Kyle Shelly, who had been introduced only moments earlier, seven minutes from the end of normal time.
With just one win from their four matches, this has been a chastening campaign for a young Tipperary outfit, many of whom are underage again next year. But it's hoped that the experience will stand them in good stead for the future, as they reach the end of the championship road this season.
It was evident from an early stage that they had their work cut out against a sleek Limerick team. However midfielders Conor O'Dwyer and captain John Campion, Stephen Ferncombe, Tony Cahill and especially Jack Leamy all featured prominently for the home team in the opening half.
Paddy Creedon tried hard on the turnover while substitutes Kenneth Ryan and Kyle Shelly also gave them a boost.
Limerick's best were Cathal O'Neill, Patrick O'Donovan, Cian Casey, Patrick Kirby, Aidan O'Connor and Adam English.
Tipperary - Shane Gleeson (Kiladangan), Sam Loughran (Ballina), Ed Connolly (Loughmore/Castleiney), Jamie Duncan (Knockavilla/Donaskeigh Kickhams), Eoin Marnane (Golden/Kilfeacle), Ciaran Lloyd (Moyne-Templetuohy), Ryan Walsh (Fethard), Conor O'Dwyer (Cashel King Cormacs 0-2), John Campion (Drom/Inch, captain 0-1), Conor Ryan (Borrisokane 0-1), Stephen Ferncombe (Clonoulty/Rossmore), Paddy Creedon (Thurles Sarsfields), Colm Fogarty (Lorrha-Dorrha 0-1), Tony Cahill (Drom/Inch 0-1) and Jack Leamy (Golden/Kilfeacle 0-7, 5 frees).
Substitutes - Kenneth Ryan (Toomevara 0-1) for Stephen Ferncombe (half-time), Michael Corcoran (Silvermines) for Ed Connolly (half-time), Cathal Deely (St. Mary's Clonmel) for Conor Ryan (38 minutes), Conor McKelvey (Silvermines 0-1) for Tony Cahill (44 minutes) and Kyle Shelly (Moycarkey-Borris 1-0) for Col Fogarty (52 minutes).
Limerick - Jack Franklin, Ronan Lyons, Michael Cremin, Fergal O'Connor, Jimmy Quilty, Ethan Hurkey, Adam Murrihy, Patrick Kirby (0-2), Patrick Reale (0-2), Liam Lynch (0-1), Cathal O'Neill (1-10, 0-7 frees), Cian Casey (0-2), Aidan O'Connor (1-2 0-1 free), Adam English (1-1) and Patrick O'Donovan (0-3).
Substitutes - Diarmuid Hegarty for Cian Casey (44 minutes), Eddie Stokes (0-1) for Patrick Kirby (49 minutes), Conor Hanley Clarke for Adam English (51 minutes), Brian O'Meara for Fergal O'Connor (54 minutes) and Darragh Casey for Patrick Reale (57 minutes).
Referee - Thomas Walsh (Waterford).