It now seems certain that Limerick publicans will apply to the courts for a special exemption to open for business on Good Friday.

Representatives of publicans met with senior gardaí in the city this afternoon to discuss the dilemma facing them as a result of the current licensing legislation, which prohibits opening on Good Friday.

It means they will not be able to avail of the business that will be generated by the sell-out Magners League game between Munster and Leinster at Thomond Park on Good Friday night.

Vintners spokesperson Dave Hickey, owner of South’s bar in Limerick, said they had a very constructive meeting with gardaí.

He said it was the preferred option of publicans that the game not be played on Friday 2 April, and that it be switched to the night before or the day after.

He said gardaí told them they would have to present to the judge the law as it stands at present, in the event of any court application to have special permission granted on Good Friday.

It now seems likely vintners will make an application for a hearing of the matter at the District Court.

With just three weeks left to Good Friday, they could make an application for a hearing in the coming days.