AHANE duo Mick Mackey and Timmy Ryan have done it and now Declan Hannon bids to become a Limerick captain to lift Munster, All-Ireland and league trophies.
Hannon is one of six members of the Limerick panel to have started in two Munster SHC finals.
“It’s a day that everyone wants to be involved in,” said the Adare man, who started in attack in the 2013 and 2014 finals.
“It’s brilliant and puts a smile on your face when you think of being involved. It’s a day that everyone wants to be involved in – especially in Limerick, they don’t come around too often so you want to make the most of them and enjoy them as much as you can,” outlined Hannon at this Tuesday night's pre-final media event.
“From a players point of view we have to take ourselves away from the whole rigmarole outside of the game and focus on performance and what happens inside the four lines of the field,” he said.
“2013 here was incredible for a lot of Limerick people. We never thought that would happen and to see the scenes on the field afterwards was amazing and to be involved was fantastic. Obviously in 2014 we went down to Cork and were beaten and that’s the other side of the table and it was massively disappointing,” he recalled of his Munster final experiences.
“Limerick were craving success for so long that to get a bit of it was fantastic – the year ended disappointingly from our point of view but it gave us a feel of what it was like to win a Munster championship and to be involved in those big days in front of 40-50,000 people,” he said of the 2013 break through.
“2013 is a long time ago too and it’s a pretty much new group of players that will be involved.”
He added: “Munster is so competitive that you have to take chances when they come – everyone wants to tick the box of having a Munster Championship,” stressed the centre back.
“It is a big strange for a Limerick team to go into a Munster final as All-Ireland champions and league champions but we are just taking it game by game and this is another game and we want to tick off the list that we are Munster champions but it is going to take one hell of an effort from the 15 that start and the five or six that come in.”
Hannon explained: “we will primarily focus on ourselves for the 70-75 minutes, as Tipp will do as well. We will obviously look back at the video from the last day and see areas we can improve on – the percentages more we can get out of that game”.
“Its about us putting in a solid performance and if it’s good enough to win then that's great and if it’s not, well then we move on again. It’s a massive take for us on Sunday and a big task but we are there and there with a shout and we will be giving it everything.”
This time last year Limerick were destined for the backdoor route and a trip to Carlow.
“We didn’t make a Munster final last year so in those terms that’s a positive for this year so far – our performances have been a bit up and down but that is the Munster Championship and the way it is. It’s so competitive and Tipperary are obviously top of the pile by winning all their games but everybody else was fighting for second and third.
“Everybody wants to go the direct route and the great thing about Sunday is that if you win there is a trophy there too which would be fantastic for this group of players to add to the cabinet and especially here in the Gaelic Grounds.”
“There will always be nerves but last year gave us a lot of confidence going into this year and we brought that into the league and obviously started the Munster Championship quite poorly with the Cork game but we got back on the horse and ended up in a Munster final,” said the former Ardscoil Ris underage hurling star.
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