/ GAA

Hurling preview: Wounded Cats ready to attack Limerick

Updated: Sunday, 29 Jul 2012 10:39 | Comments

Beware the wounded Cat - Henry's not happy and Limerick are set to face the wrath of Kilkenny
Beware the wounded Cat - Henry's not happy and Limerick are set to face the wrath of Kilkenny

By Micil Glennon

Limerick face the daunting task of dealing with a Kilkenny backlash in Thurles on Sunday, throw-in 4.00pm.

After Tipperary beat Waterford in the Munster final, a few commentators ventured the opinion that nobody would be looking forward to meeting The Déise in the quarters.

But that cliché should have been expressly reserved for whoever came out of the pot with the All-Ireland champions.

Another voice compared the Kildare footballers to the New Zealand rugby team but that analogy also belongs to Kilkenny.

They have no other significant sport to niggle away at their resources. Rightly or wrongly, the Black and Amber are the All Blacks of GAA.

For the first time in recent history, Brian Cody’s men had no answer to what Galway threw at them.

It was hard to recall a Brian Cody team scrimping such a measly first-half total as they did in the Leinster decider. Even Tipp’s blistering start to the 2010 final spurred a response from the Cats.

But we all know what happens when you kick the hornets’ nest.

Poor Limerick. Since pushing Tipperary close in the Munster quarter-final, they’ve gone on a fine run, beating Laois, Antrim and rivals Clare.

Now they face a wounded Cats team that will show no mercy.

Manager John Allen has named Declan Hannon to start at centre-forward ahead of Brian Geary in the only change to the team that beat Clare.

Like Galway, Limerick, to stand any chance, will need to outdo Kilkenny in the physicality stakes but it’s just hard to imagine the Cats getting caught out like that twice in a row.

And just like New Zealand made Ireland pay for having the temerity to get within a score of a win, someone is going to have to pay for the Leinster final.

Poor Limerick.

Verdict: Kilkenny

Limerick: N Quaid, S Walsh, R McCarthy, T Condon, W McNamara, D O’Grady, G O’Mahony, J Ryan, P O’Brien, S Dowling, D Hannon, D Breen, G Mulcahy, N Moran, S Tobin.

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