Limerick hurlers set to add new faces for qualifiers

Jerome O’Connell

Reporter:

Jerome O’Connell

Limerick hurling manager TJ Ryan, with coach Paul Beary
LIMERICK hurling manager TJ Ryan looks set to freshen up his county senior hurling panel ahead of the All Ireland SHC Qualifiers.

LIMERICK hurling manager TJ Ryan looks set to freshen up his county senior hurling panel ahead of the All Ireland SHC Qualifiers.

Due to the hectic club championship schedule this week, the hurlers don’t regroup until Sunday evening to commence preparations for the May 5 clash away to Westmeath.

TJ Ryan and selectors Paul Beary, Mark Lyons and Davy Clarke have a 30-man panel at present but could dip into the current intermediate panel and last year’s All Ireland minor panel to bolster their options.

Ronan Lynch, Andrew La Touche Cosgrave, Diarmuid Byrnes and Sean Finn are among those that could be set for a senior call-up.

Options will also be helped by the return from injury of Nickie Quaid and Seanie Tobin from suspension.

After avoiding any of the big guns in this Monday’s Qualifier draw, Limerick are currently the hottest of 1/66 favourites to advance past Westmeath.

The game against the Leinster minnows will take place on Sunday July 5 in Cusack Park in Mullingar at 2.00.

Victory against Westmeath would progress TJ Ryan’s men to round two on the weekend of July 11/12 when Limerick would play Laois, Dublin, Wexford, Cork or Offaly. A repeat pairing against Clare would be avoided.

Westmeath are seen as 16/1 outsiders to beat Limerick. Managed by former Waterford Michael Ryan, Westmeath beat Carlow and Antrim but lost to Laois and Wexford in the Leinster SHC. Their exit came at the hands of an eight point loss to Wexford in Mullingar.

Limerick are bidding to bounce back from the worst Munster SHC loss to Tipperary in over 50 years.

“We have work to do,” he sighed.

“When you get a beating like this there has to be changes,” said Ryan.

“It’s back to the drawing board and see what we can do for the next day with a plan and see if we can build a bit of momentum again. We got to regroup - this is a bad beating for us that we got to take on the chin and move on and try and build a platform for again,” said Ryan.