Lynch poised to lead Limerick in Croke Park clash

Patrickswell titan Cian Lynch seems poised to stand in for captain Declan Hannonn in this weekend’s semi-final showdown with Galway. Photo: Ramsey Cardy.

CIAN LYNCH is poised to lead Limerick onto famed Croke Park for Saturday’s massive All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship semi-final showdown with Galway.

That’s the view of injured captain Declan Hannon, speaking recently to RTÉ at the launch of eir’s new Poc Tapa Challenge.

Lynch, vice-captain, has been hampered with a hamstring injury but, in the words of Hannon, is now “flying it”.

Hannon revealed: “Up and down the pitch. Looking forward to seeing him make waves, as he does, over the next few weeks.”

“The two injuries he got last year were sucker-punches for him. Your heart would go out to him, especially the second one when he was back for the All-Ireland semi-final and then did his ankle the week before the All-Ireland final. That was just a sickener. But he has come back all guns blazing. He’s in great form.”

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If versatile Lynch (27) appears at the weekend, it will be his 85th competitive outing with Limerick since making his debut (under TJ Ryan) back in 2015. The Patrickswell ace is a two-time Player of the Year and holder of three All-Stars.

Hannon, who limped off in the Munster Final win over Clare, is himself recovering from a knee issue but would come back into the reckoning if Limerick were to make it through to another final on July 23.

“There’s not really a timeline,” reckoned Hannon. “I just got a bit of a nick on my knee so it just depends on how it recovers now in the next few weeks. I’m just taking it day by day now, trying to get the rehab going and trying to get back on the pitch as soon as possible.”

Hannon (30) has missed only one of the 37 championship matches of John Kiely’s magnificent reign so far, namely the 2019 round-robin defeat to Tipperary at Semple Stadium in Thurles when Limerick were already assured of progression.