Limerick minor football manager Jerry O’Sullivan reckons his side can still have a good campaign, despite Wednesday’s 2-15 to 2-7 loss to Cork in the Gaelic Grounds.
Limerick now go into a qualifier game against Waterford next Wednesday - and a win there would give them a quarter-final clash with Clare.
Despite two first-half goals from Adare’s Mark Connolly, Limerick trailed the Rebels by 2-9 to 2-2 at the break, and couldn’t make any real inroads into the deficit in the second half.
“Look, I’m disappointed but I’m not devastated, said O’Sullivan afterwards .”We’ve a game against Waterford and it’s a night to look forward to. We’ve already forgotten tonight’s match. Hopefully, we can put up the same type of performance as we did tonight.
“We started sluggish enough, they got three points on the board straight away and we were at sixes and sevens but, all of a sudden, we came into it and started delivering the ball good into the full-forward line.”
“The boys were winning it inside and we were 1-1 on the board but they went up the field, got two points, then tagged on a penalty and we were playing catch-up from then on. Every time we came down and got a score, they went up the field to get a reply and kept that gap between
us we weren’t able to breach.”
The Newcastle West man had particular praise for inside forwards Connolly and James Ryan and reckons they can do damage to any side.
“Mark Connolly and James Ryan just put the head down and make it for the goals. What they lack for in size, they make up for in heart. If you play the right type of ball into them, they’ll beat any team in the country. They put the head down, get an eye for goal and they’re gone.”
SCORERS, CORK: Stephen Sherlock 1-5 (1-0 penalty, 0-2 frees), Stephen Leonard 0-4 (2 frees), David Lowney 1-1, Gary Murphy 0-2, Eoin O’Brien, Conor Hughes, Daniel Ó Duinnín 0-1 each; LIMERICK: Mark Connolly 2-0, Andrew White 0-4 (4 frees), Paul Maher, Diarmuid Kelly, James Ryan (free) 0-1 each.
CORK: Chris Kelly; Nathan Walsh, Tiernan O’Connell, Conor Dennehy; Seán Powter, Ronan Walsh, Kevin Dwyer; Daniel Ó Duinnín, Eoin O’Brien; David Lowney, Gary Murphy, Conor Hughes; Seán McEvoy, Stephen Leonard, Stephen Sherlock. Subs: Séamus Madigan for Tiernan O’Connell (injured - 10 mins), Ryan Fowley for Conor Hughes (42 mins), Shane O’Dowd for Daniel Ó Duinnín (52 mins), Seán Lucey for Conor Dennehy (53 mins), Shane O’Driscoll for Gary Murphy (57 mins), Shane O’Neill for Stephen Sherlock (57 mins).
LIMERICK: Aaron Murphy; David Hanley, Luke O’Connell, Fionn Murphy; John Wallace, Seán Ivess, Seán Murphy; Adam Kerins, Michael Whelan; Andrew White, Mikey Morrissey, Ed Sheehy; Diarmuid Kelly, Mark Connolly, James Ryan. Subs: Adam Storan for Mikey Morrissey (25 mins), Paul Maher for Ed Sheehy (half-time), Richard Hayes for Andrew White (50 mins), Dillon Corrigan for Diarmuid Kelly (53 mins), Gearóid Brennan for Fionn Murphy (59 mins), Cameron Stephenson for John Wallace (59 mins).
REFEREE: Seán Lonergan (Tipperary).