Limerick hurler Cian Lynch with MIC student Cian Lynch with Professor Eugene Wall of Mary Immaculate College
MANY of the Limerick players hit both the pitch and books together, with most of the team cutting their teeth together as students in Limerick.
With the University of Limerick taking home the prestigious Fitzgibbon Cup earlier this year, Mary Immaculate College were previously crowned champions of the All-Ireland college tournament, picking up the trophy twice in 2016 and 2017.
“There would be a strong connection between this Limerick All Ireland team and the Fitzgibbon hurling team in UL,” UL GAA games development officer Ronan Keane told the Limerick Leader. “It would have been nice for such a big number of the Limerick panel to have success early in the year, around February.”
“It would have also been nice to see the likes of Kyle Hayes and Barry Nash, who were injured for the Fitzgibbon campaign, coming good at this stage in the year. Gearoid Hegarty would have also won a Fitzgibbon All Star but he would have been played in the half-back line for us so it's interesting to see that he’s doing great work for Limerick this year in the half-forward line,” he added.
Sean Finn, Gearoid Hegarty, Tom Morrissey, Barry Murphy, Pat Ryan, Michael Casey, Kyle Hayes and Barry Nash are currently studying at UL, with Dan Morrissey, Oisin O’ Reilly, Seamus Hickey and William O’Donoghue among past-students of the university.
UL president Des Fitzgerald wished the students well: “On behalf of the UL community I wish the very best of luck to the Limerick Senior Hurling Team in their All Ireland Final against Galway. We are particularly proud that so much of the team is made up of UL students and graduates and that there are also UL alumni representing Galway. Go n-éirí an t-ádh leo go léir.’
Patrickswell’s Aaron Gillane and Cian Lynch are both currently studying Arts at MIC, with Cian due to graduate this October. Other Limerick players who came through MIC include Ritchie English, Declan Hannon, Darragh O’Donovan and David Reidy.
“We are so proud of the determination and tenacity that these players have demonstrated on the field of play, as Fitzgibbon Cup Champions in 2016 and 2017 and now for their County,” MIC president Eugene Wall said.
“We know that they will bring all of their experience to bear when they line out for Limerick on the 19th August. We are inspired by their achievements and wish them every success in the final - Luimneach Abú!”
Monaleen-man Andrew La Touche Cosgrave and Patrickswell’s Diarmaid Byrnes are both currently studying at Limerick Institute of Technology (LIT). However, some Limerick players will face off against their former university colleagues as they get ready to take on the defending champions.
Galway players David Burke, Jonathan Glynn and Johnny Coen are past-students at UL, with Connor Conney, Sean Linnane, Thomas Monaghan coming through MIC.
Galway star hurler Joe Canning, franchise owner of Camile Thai at the Parkway Retail Park, is also a past LIT pupil.
Wonder if he makes it to work on Monday August 20!