Limerick hurlers off to Thurles

Jerome O’Connell

Reporter:

Jerome O’Connell

LIMERICK’S All-Ireland hurling qualifier have been fixed for Semple Stadium in Thurles this Saturday.

LIMERICK’S All-Ireland hurling qualifier have been fixed for Semple Stadium in Thurles this Saturday.

The round three Shannonside derby between Limerick and Clare will have a 7.00 start and will be the third of a triple-decker of qualifier games in Thurles.

And, RTE television have confirmed that they will be showing the Limerick v Clare game live.

There will be a midlands road-trip for Limerick GAA supporters, who wish to attend both the hurlers and footballers on Saturday.

Last week the Limerick v Longford football game was fixed for this Saturday at 7.00 in Longford but now the football clash in Pearse Park has been brought forward to 2.00 - thus giving supporters the opportunity to attend both games.

A cross-country journey from Longford to Thurles will take supporters in green and white just about two hours.

The hectic schedule in Semple Stadium will get underway at 3.00 when Tipperary host Wexford in round two of the football qualifiers. Then at 5,00 will be the hurling game between Wexford and Cork, with Limerick and Clare bringing the curtain down on the hat-trick of games.

Confirmation of the Thurles game for the Limerick hurlers ended a Monday morning full of speculation after the draws had taken place on TV3 at 8.30.

Initial rumours suggested that Limerick and Clare could have been off to Fitzgerald Stadium in Thurles.

That was because a toss for home advantage was ruled out as Cusack Park in Ennis was not seen to be suitable given it’s down grading last season to a 12,000 capacity stadium after a health and safety audit.

It is understood that Limerick GAA officials have sought Clare to play in the Gaelic Grounds, given the proximity to both counties, both Clare did not accept the offer.

Thurles was initially not thought to be runner because of a football fixture, between Tipperary and Wexford but this game has been brought forward to allow for the hurling fixtures.

Had Limerick been draw to play Cork, the counties had agreed to a new home and away agreement and Limerick had lost the toss and would have had to travel to Pairc Ui Chaoimh on Saturday evening.