Na Piarsaigh prepare for Munster club championship

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Seán Finn, who was unlucky to lose out at the All-Star awards

NEWLY crowned Limerick senior hurling kingpins Na Piarsaigh have been installed as second favourites to win the upcoming Munster club championship. 

Waterford’s Ballygunner are tipped by the bookmakers to land back-to-back Munster crowns.

Kieran Berminghan’s side swept past Kilmallock at the Gaelic Grounds on Sunday to land a remarkable seventh title inside a decade and will now play either Ballygunner or Kilruane MacDonaghs of Tipperary in the provincial semi-final in a fortnights time.

For the moment, however, Na Piarsaigh remain in celebratory mood with full-back Mike Casey saying: ” We  are going to concentrate for a few days on celebrating as we’ve worked really, really hard over the year.

“Later in the week, of course, we will knuckle down again and look at the next stage of the championship,” he added.

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Two-goal hero Adrian Breen added: “Reclaiming Limerick was obviously the primary goal for us this season. We have achieved that now, so it’s about soaking that in over a few days. Definitely we feel like we can match any team in the country, and please God, there will be a few more steps left in us this year.”

With no Kerry representatives in the Munster club championship, the other semi-final involves Ballyea of Clare and Cork champions, St Finbarr’s.

Although Limerick should be fairly content with seven All-Stars – Nickie Quaid, Barry Nash, Diarmaid Byrnes, Declan Hannon, Gearóid Hegarty, Kyle Hayes and Aaron Gillane –five-in-a-row seeking Seán Finn was unlucky to be pipped for the number two slot by Kilkenny rookie Mikie Butler, who was man-of-the-match in the Leinster Final and managed to keep  Clare’s Tony Kelly scoreless.