Limerick DL, holders of the Oscar Traynor Trophy were brought crashing back to earth on Tuesday evening when they were comprehensively beaten 4-0 by their county neighbours from the Desmond League in Askeaton. A good comeback in their opening game with Clare gave Limerick DL the perfect start to their campaign but once again tonight they were slow and cumbersome in their build up play and paid the price against a more direct home side who showed more enthusiasm for the tie.
The Desmond League took the lead early on when the visitors failed to clear their lines and Pat Aherne teed up Darren Murphy who volleyed in from 15 yards.
Thinks got worse ten minutes later when Aherne was tripped in the area and took the resultant spot kick to double the home side's lead.
With John Grehan hoping to get his side into the dressing room to regroup, disaster struck just before the break when Aherne forced a save from Gary Neville and Timmy Larkin, following up, tucked away the rebound to make it 3-0.
Limerick decided to play forward ball in the second half and did create more half chances but as expected they left gaps at the back and an Aherne topped off a superb performance when he intercepted an attempted back pass to score his second and his side's fourth.
The visitors continued to press but had no ideas on how to break down a solid back four for the winners.
It's back to the drawing board for the holders who meet Kerry (away) in the final group game where a win is a must if they hope to progress.
Limerick Desmond: Pat Stack; Cormac Roche; Alan O'Shea; Gary Enright; Sean O'Shea; Fiachra Cotter; Kevin Murphy; Joe McAuliffe; Pat Aherne; Tim Larkin; Darren Murphy. Subs: Bryan Hannigan; Gary Culhane; Sean Brosnan
Limerick DL: Gary Neville; Danny O'Neill; Mike Guerin; Pat Mullins; John Mullane; Shane Walsh; Colin Daly; AJ O'Connor; Adrian Power; Kieran Hanlon; Keith Mawdsley. Subs: Conor Ellis; Clyde O'Connell; James Fitzgerald; Thomas Clarke