U-21 hurlers surrender crown after humbling defeat to Tipperary

Peter Casey tries to break away from Killian O'Dwyer during Limerick's 1-22 to 1-13 defeat to Tipperary. Photo: Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile

Limerick’s reign as Munster and All-Ireland U-21 hurling champions is over after they were comprehensively beaten by Tipperary in the Munster semi final in Thurles.

Pat Donnelly’s men suffered a nine point defeat to a red hot Tipperary side at Semple Stadium and the Limerick manager announced after the game that it was to be his last in charge.

The game was effectively over at half time as Tipperary went in 0-13 to 0-5 in front thanks to some outstanding scores from the impressive Mark Kehoe and Jake Morris.

Limerick had a great chance to reduce that lead just before the break with a Barry Murphy penalty but the Doon man’s effort crashed off the crossbar.

Tipperary made a fast start to the contest with the opening four points but Limerick responded with efforts from Brian Ryan and Conor Boylan.

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Limerick were unable to get going at any stage thanks to Tipperary’s fight and expertise in front of goal that helped them to a six point advantage after 23 minutes.

That lead was stretched to eight before Murphy was afforded the penalty chance after he was fouled by Tipperary corner back Killian O’Dwyer. However, he was unable to find the net and Limerick’s hopes of a comeback evaporated.

Limerick rallied late on with impressive cameos from Darren O’Connell and Oisin O’Reilly, while Kevin Howard’s late goal put on a gloss on the scoreline. Tipperary now play Cork in the Munster Final following the 1-22 to 1-13 victory.

Scorers – Limerick: Barry Murphy 0-4 (3fs), Kevin Howard 1-0, Paddy O’Loughlin (1f) and Michael Houlihan (2fs) 0-2 each, Brian Ryan, Conor Boylan, Willie O’Meara, Oisin O’Reilly and Peter Casey (1f), 0-1 each.

Scorers – Tipperary: Mark Kehoe 0-5, Brian McGrath (3fs), Jake Morris, Colin English and Lyndon Fairbrother (3fs), 0-3 each, David Gleeson 1-0, Ger Browne 0-2, Jerome Cahill, Cian Darcy and Darragh Woods 0-1 each.

Limerick: Jamie Power; Brian Timmons, Josh Adams, John Flynn; Willie O’Meara, Kyle Hayes, Thomas Grimes; Paddy O’Loughlin, Mike Mackey; Brian Ryan, Barry Murphy, Conor Boylan; Peter Casey, Seamus Flanagan, Mark O’Dwyer; Subs: Darren O’Connell for O’Dwyer (h-t), Oisin O’Reilly for Flanagan (42 mins), Michael Houlihan for Ryan (43 mins), Kevin Howard for Mackey (48 mins), Brian O’Grady for Murphy (52 mins).

Tipperary: Ciaran Barrett; Podge Campion, Brian McGrath, Killian O’Dwyer; Cian Flanagan, Paddy Caddell, Dillon Quirke; Ger Browne, Colin English; Jerome Cahill, Paudie Feehan, Mark Kehoe; David Gleeson, Jake Morris, Lyndon Fairbrother; Subs: Cian Darcy for Fairbrother (51 mins), Craig Morgan for Quirke (53 mins), Darragh Woods for Gleeson (56 mins), Conor Stakelum for Cahill (58 mins), Michael Purcell for Flanagan (61 mins).

Referee: Rory McGann (Clare)