Newcastle West on the trail of Munster honours

The Newcastle West team that will face Kerins O'Rahilly's in the Munster Club Football final.

HISTORY beckons for Newcastle West on Saturday when they take on Kerry’s Kerins O’Rahilly’s in the Munster Club SFC Final in Páirc Uí Rinn. The Magpies are in their second ever Munster decider, their last appearance being in the 1987 final.

That game ended in defeat to Cork’s Nemo Rangers, but Jimmy Lee’s men will be looking to go one step further this time around. 

If they are successful, Newcastle West will become the first Limerick side since Dromcollogher-Broadford in 2008 to take home the prize. A star-studded Thomond College side in the late 1970s are the only other Limerick outfit to taste provincial success.

Newcastle West come into Saturday’s clash on the back of a stunning extra time comeback win over Tipperary’s Clonmel Commercials in the semi-final. The side were underdogs going into that last four clash and are in the same position this weekend.

There are plenty of links for Newcastle West to look at from the last time they were in a Munster Final back in 1987. Liam Keane, selector, scored 1-1 in that defeat to Nemo, while former manager Michael Quilligan Snr, who joined Keane in midfield, is father to keeper Mike Jnr and panel member Thomas. 

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Billy Lee also lined out for the club in that game, while his brother Jimmy takes charge of the team in this final. Another ex-Limerick stalwart and Newcastle West legend, Stephen Kelly, is the coaching mastermind behind their current success. 

The six-time Limerick champions face a Kerins O’Rahilly’s side that have one Munster Final appearance to their name, a defeat to Clare’s Kilmurry-Ibrickane in 2009. However, they do have current Kerry All-Ireland champions David Moran and Jack Savage in their ranks. Savage has come back from working in Dubai to line out for the Kerry side recently. 

Newcastle West, despite their underdog status, should be confident that they can come out with a victory in this game. They have come through to this stage unbeaten and have attacking threats throughout their team. 

The team has also been miserly in defence throughout the 2022 season. All that is left is a bit of luck to get them over the line. Their game is live on TG4 and Live 95 on Saturday, throw in 7.30pm.

Elsewhere, Na Piarsaigh’s footballers are also in the hunt for Munster honours when they take on Kerry opposition as well on Sunday in Mallow. Rathmore are their opponents in the Munster Club IFC decider.

The Caherdavin outfit have beaten Waterford’s Roanmore and Ballina of Tipperary on their way to the final. 

Na Piarsaigh achieved their aim of returning to the senior ranks at the first attempt with victory over Drom-Broadford in the Limerick final last October. Mike Lynch and his backroom team will feel that they are in bonus territory. However, Na Piarsaigh are a club that feed off of silverware and will be keen to add to their trophy cabinet.