LIMERICK look to defy the odds in today's Munster senior football championship final.
It's Limerick v Kerry in the 2022 provincial decider in Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney at 3pm.
A 126 year gap has to be bridged if Billy Lee’s side are to return a fairytale second ever Munster SFC to Limerick.
Kerry are 82-time provincial winners and appear in their 107th final on Saturday – Limerick’s lone title was in 1896 and are set for just a 15th final appearance.
Limerick’s last final appearance was in 2010 – meaning none of Sunday’s 34-man panel have Munster SFC final experience.
And, the Shannonsiders have to go to Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney to play Kerry in their home patch, where they have won the last three finals staged in the shadows of the Macgillycuddy Reeks by an average of 11-points.
All that makes Limerick the 16/1 outsiders and Kerry the hottest of 100/1 favourites for a final live on RTE television at 3pm.
But this group of Limerick footballers have long shown they enjoy the challenge of defying the odds.
It’s just 2019 since the Allianz League standings ranked Limerick at no31 – they are now at 16 after two promotions in three years.
They were also seven years without a win in the Munster SFC until 2019. Limerick have now won a game in each campaign since – four years of victories is a first in 30 years. And, to reach Saturday’s final, Limerick have beaten Clare and Tipperary – back-to-back Munster SFC wins for the first time since 2009.
There have been seven previous Limerick-Kerry finals - 1905, ‘34, ‘65, 91, 2003, ‘04 and 2010.
It’s just a seventh Munster SFC final appearance in living memory for Limerick with the football fraternity in the county still recounting the near misses and some injustices.
This Saturday, Limerick look to write a another chapter in their football history in the first championship meeting of the counties since the 2011 All-Ireland quarter final in Croke Park.
This afternoon’s Munster SFC winners will advance into the June 25/26 All-Ireland SFC quarter finals, while defeat means a June 11/12 All-Ireland SFC Round Two Qualifier tie against Armagh/Tyrone, Mayo/Monaghan, Cork/Louth or Clare/Meath.
The Limerick panel of 34 players is spread across 21 clubs.
PANEL: Iain Corbett, Cian Sheehan, Diarmaid Kelly (all Newcastle West); Donal O'Sullivan, Brian Donovan, Luke Murphy (all Monaleen); Jim Liston, Tommy Griffin, Colm McSweeney, Dara Noonan (all Gerald Griffins); Paul Maher, Hugh Bourke, Robbie Bourke (all Adare); Darragh Treacy and Liam Kennedy (both St Kierans); Peter Nash and Tony McCarthy (both Kildimo-Pallaskenry); Brian Fanning and Aaron O'Sullivan (both Pallasgreen); Gordon Brown and Eoghan Sherlock (both Na Piarsaigh); Sean O’Dea (Kilteely-Dromkeen), Killian Ryan (Mungret St Pauls), Cillian Fahy (Dromcollogher-Broadford), Adrian Enright (Fr Caseys), James Naughton (St Senans), Josh Ryan (Oola), Michael Donovan (Galbally), Bob Childs (Galtee Gaels), Eoghan Cregan (Croom), Barry Coleman (Rathkeale), Darragh Ranahan (Ballysteen), Kevin Howard (Claughaun), Padraig de Brun (Firies, Kerry).
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