Limerick Minor Manager Antoin Power
WHEN Tipperary’s Sean Hayes hit two goals in quick succession in the final quarter of the Munster MHC opener, it looked like Limerick were headed for defeat.
But there is a great never-say-die attitude to this Limerick side, who got their campaign in the new-look U-17 competition off and running with an impressive victory after outscoring the Premier 1-7 to 0-3 from the 51st minute to the final whistle.
Limerick manager Antoin Power was quick to praise the young side’s attitude after the 1-17 to 2-12 success in the Gaelic Grounds.
“There was great fight there, great belief in the lads,” the Claughaun man said.
“They really worked hard in training and we finished well. We have been finishing well all year in the challenge games and we really finished well (today) with the few scores there at the end to run out as winners – I’m absolutely delighted.”
The new-look structure sees Limerick play four games in the round robin phase of the championship. Games with Cork (away), Waterford (home) and Clare (away) are in the pipeline for Power’s side as they look to secure a top two finish in the group.
“(It is) a new experience for everyone – the players, the management and all the backroom staff. We got off to a good start,” he said.
“(It is only) round one we move onto round two now. We were only focussing on Tipperary and I suppose we have to regroup now and recover and prepare now for the next one.”
A number of this Limerick side have played in the Harty Cup and Power feels this experience was key in the closing stages as the home side hit three injury time points to secure the narrow win.
“(They showed) good maturity, good experience to bring them into this as well and they showed that in the last five or 10 minutes there,” he reflected outside the winning dressing room.
“It’s onwards and upwards now and we’ll just move to round two and move onto the next one.”
Tipperary manager Tommy Dunne praised Limerick’s coolness in front of goal. The visitors hit 14 wides, including 10 in the first half – a stat that cost them dearly in the end as Limerick were able to take their opportunities.
“We created a lot of chances but didn’t create enough of them to win the game and Limerick came back,” he said.
“Their conversion rate was much better and they finished the game much better (but) we faded away after going five points ahead,” the former South Liberties coach added.
The Limerick Leader will continue to cover the Minor hurling campaign this season. Next match is June 2 against Cork. See #LLSport for more on social media.
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