Limerick’s 2020 McGrath Cup Review

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Limerick’s first triumph in the competition since 2005 against Cork last Saturday brought the 2020 McGrath Cup to an end.

Limerick’s 0-20 to 0-16 victory over the Rebels in the Gaelic Grounds puts them in good stead for the Allianz National Football League which kicks-off for Billy Lee’s side on January 25 away to Waterford.

McGrath Cup Final, LIT Gaelic Grounds, Co. Limerick 11/1/2020 Cork vs Limerick Limerick’s Iain Corbett and Donal O’Sullivan with the McGrath Cup Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Ken Sutton

En route to claiming the preseason title, Billy Lee’s side accounted for Clare, Waterford and Cork.

Limerick’s 2020 McGrath Cup Results

  • Limerick 0-14 : 2-6 Clare
  • Waterford 0-10 : 2-10 Limerick
  • Limerick 0-20 : 0-16

Limerick 0-14 : 2-6 Clare

Limerick’s first outing of the season took place on December 29 in Rathkeale against neighbours Clare.

Limerick controlled much of the game but a brace of Kealan Sexton goals kept the Banner in touch.

The win meant another against Waterford would secure their place in the decider.

Waterford 0-10 : 2-10 Limerick

Billy Lee’s side dominated the opening half against Waterford in the Fraher Field taking a commanding 1-7 to 0-2 lead into the break.

However, Waterford leveled middway through the second half before Limerick pulled away again with Danny Neville and Ger Stack notching the goals.

Limerick 0-20 : 0-16 Cork

Limerick saved their best for last when they outplayed Cork in the Gaelic Grounds in the McGrath Cup Final.

Limerick lead for the majority of the game with Danny Neville to the fore with 0-7.

The victory was Lee’s first as manager of the Limerick footballers.

11 January 2020; Limerick manager Billy Lee before the McGrath Cup Final match between Cork and Limerick at LIT Gaelic Grounds in Limerick. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

Players

Overall, Billy Lee used 27 players across the three games with four players making their debuts in Bob Childs, Darren O’Doherty, Ryan Glynn and Ger Stack.

Childs was one of seven players to start each game alongside joint captains Donal O’Sullivan & Iain Corbett, Tony McCarthy, Adrian Enright, Jamie Lee and Danny Neville.

Neville was one of two returning players to panel with Josh Ryan with the pair stepping away from the intercounty scene in 2019. Neville was named Man Of The Match in the McGrath Cup final scoring 0-7.

11 January 2020; Danny Neville of Limerick in action against Cian Kiely, left, and Thomas Clancy of Cork during the McGrath Cup Final match between Cork and Limerick at LIT Gaelic Grounds in Limerick. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

Of the 21 players that featured against Westmeath in Limerick’s final championship game of 2019, there were seven that did not play any minutes in the McGrath Cup.

Sean McSweeney and Darragh Treacy are travelling for the year while Colm MacSweeney, Gordon Browne, Sean O’Dea, Mike Fitzgibbon and Peter Nash also didn’t feature.


Scorers

Jamie Lee and Danny Neville top scored for the side over the three games with Lee notching 0-11 (8f) and Neville getting 1-8 (3m).

Munster GAA Football Senior Championship Semi-Final, Pairc Ui Rinn, Cork 1/6/2019
Cork vs Limerick
Limerick’s Jamie Lee
Mandatory Credit ©INPHO/Laszlo Geczo

They were joined by Seamus O’Carroll (0-4) as the only players to score in each game.

Iain Corbett also chipped in with 0-4 in total, with all coming from centre-back including a brace in a dominant display in the McGrath Cup final.

In total, Limerick had a fine spread of scorers with fifteen different players getting on the scoresheet.


Next Up

Limerick travel to the Fraher Field on Saturday January 25 to face Waterford in the first round of the Allianz National Football League.

A week later Limerick welcome London to Kilmallock.

Incidentally, these were the only counties Limerick beat in the League last year with both games occurring in the opening two weekends.

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