TJ Ryan is to wait until Na Piarsaigh’s All Ireland club SHC run is over before finalising the 2016 Limerick senior hurling panel.
Ryan and selectors Davy Clarke and Don Flynn have a panel of 42 at present but the eight Na Piarsaigh players won’t be called upon until their campaign ends – be it after February 6 or March 17.
The extended panel includes every member of the starting team, plus substitute Kevin O’Brien, from September’s All Ireland U-21 final apart from the unfortunate Colin Ryan who is ruled out for the season through injury.
In total there are 18 new faces into the panel at present – Mike Reidy, John Riordan and Kieran O’Rourke the only ‘non 2015 U-21 players’.
Remaining from last season’s senior panel are 24 players. Departed are Stephen Walsh (retired), David Breen (opted out), Conor Allis, Aaron Murphy and Patrick Begley.
Former captain Donal O’Grady is to confirm his plans in the near future.
The panel includes dual player Gearoid Hegarty, while John Riordan has put his football commitments on hold to try earn a permanent hurling spot.
“There are a good lot of young fellas in the squad at the moment and over the next three Sundays the new format to the Munster League will give us the opportunity to give them game time and have a proper look at the fellas we want to have a look at,” explained manager TJ Ryan.
”You will see a different team next week with new players,” said Ryan of Limerick’s trip to Waterford this Sunday.
“To be honest a competition like this is better than challenge games because they is something to play for and you want to win the games and you get a proper look at fellas. The format allows us to go and try players because we have four structured games over four weekends and I think its a good idea,” said Ryan of the new-look Munster Senior Hurling League.
Limerick travel to the WIT GAA grounds in Carriganore this Sunday and then play Cork in Mallow the following week before the final group game at home to Clare on January 24.
“We have a couple of knocks Richie McCarthy (finger) and James Ryan (chest) but nothing to keep anyone out for a while or a period of time. We are without the Na Piarsaigh players of course,” said Ryan of the January games.
”February 13 is in our mind to make sure our team is right for that and hopefully beat Wexford,” he said, referencing the opening of the Allianz League Division 1B campaign.
”The ideal scenario would have been to finalise a panel before the league starts but we have to consider that we have eight guys from Na Piarsaigh on our books at the moment and we could be without them until April 1 so it will be towards the end of the spring before its finalised,” said Ryan.
LIMERICK SENIOR HURLING PANEL: Shane Dowling, Kevin Downes, Cathal King, Adrian Breen, Ronan Lynch, Michael Casey, David Dempsey, William O’Donoghue (all Na Piarsaigh), Thomas, Seanie and Kevin O’Brien, Diarmaid Byrnes, Cian Lynch (all Patrickswell), Barry Hennessy, Paudie O’Brien, Gavin O’Mahony, Graeme Mulcahy (Kilmallock), Seamus Hickey, Seanie Tobin, Mikey Ryan (all Murroe-Boher), Declan Hannon, Wayne McNamara, John Fitzgibbon (all Adare), Richie English, Darragh O’Donovan, Pat Ryan (all Doon), Paul Browne, Sean Finn (both Bruff), Dan and Tom Morrissey (both Ahane), Mike and David Reidy (both Dromin-Athlacca), Kieran O’Rourke (Bruree), Barry Nash (South Liberties), Nickie Quaid (Effin), Richie McCarthy (Blackrock), James Ryan (Garryspillane), David McCarthy (Glenroe), Tom Condon (Knockaderry), Barry O’Connell (Kildimo-Pallaskenry), John Riordan (Templeglantine), Gearoid Hegarty (St Patricks).