It's hard to believe the Championship has rolled around so quickly again.

Munster is really starting off with fireworks on Sunday  when Tipperary and Cork meet in Thurles.

The first round is always tough to call as you don't know where teams are at.

You have Tipperary coming off a 17-point drubbing by Galway in the league final but then Cork had a very disappointing League quarter-final against Limerick.

The start is crucial for Cork; if they can get a bit of momentum going and stop Tipperary scoring goals in the first 20/25 minutes, it would give them a realistic chance of causing an upset.

Cork beat Tipperary by a point in the League, which is a big psychological advantage. They put up a big score and should probably have beaten them by more.

Even though Tipp had rested a few players, that will give them confidence.

It will be at the back of Tipperary minds that they've lost to this Cork team as well.

I always found that playing a team you had beaten recently gives you that extra bit of belief and sows a doubt in the heads of the opposition.

Cork have been very quiet since they were knocked out of the League.

Listening to Patrick Horgan last week, I feel they've really put their heads down and started to work hard but I don't think they will be physical enough for this Tipperary side.

Galway bullied Tipperary off the field. They were stronger, bigger men and the Tipp guys shied away a bit in the forwards, which you don't normally see.

But you can see Tipperary's half-back line being too strong for Cork. It's going to be a big test for the likes of Shane Kingston, in his first year, going into the lion's den on Sunday against guys like Padraic Maher or Seamus Kennedy.

Up front, they are very dependent on Horgan and Seamus Harnedy.

Tipp have injury worries. I don't think Bonner Maher is going to make it and he will be a huge loss. In defence, Michael Cahill is struggling and Tomás Hamill is doubtful as well.

That definitely weakens them but, even with the injuries, I think they'll be too cute on the day.

John and Noel McGrath, Seamie Callanan and Michael Breen are just going to have too much firepower.

Callanan will be fresh after missing the league final. He had a quiet campaign by his standards and will be out to prove a point.

Unless Cork have really tightened up at No 3 and No 6, I can see a bit of damage being done down the centre.

Tipperary need to get back to winning ways after the blow of the League final.

I felt before that that they were only running in third gear and that they would lift it ahead of the Championship but for them to fall so flat must be a huge worry to Michael Ryan.

If they use it in a positive way, it could be a catalyst for their year.

Brian Cody used to always tell us that if we were one per cent off, we could be very poor, but if we were 100 per cent focused and ready we would perform on the day.

I think Tipp now know that unless they're 100 per cent right that can happen.

If they were to lose again on Sunday it would be a massive blow, and their year could be on the way to a premature end.

But I fully expect them to hit the ground running and Cork are still a little bit too naive to cause an upset.

Lighting up Leinster

I'd give both qualifiers from the Leinster round-robin a chance in the quarter-finals.

If Wexford are going to be caught in the Leinster Championship, it could be Sunday week.

You'd hope they're not being complacent and focusing all their energy on expecting to face Kilkenny two weeks later.

Laois have won all their games so far and could give them a scare.

I wouldn't be surprised if Westmeath put one over on Offaly.

Offaly hurling is in dire straits. There were once a powerhouse and you'd love to see them get back to that but I don't know if the hurlers and confidence are there.

Westmeath have done good underage work in recent years and I'd give them a serious chance of an upset.

Watch Tipperary v Cork (throw-in 4pm) live on RTÉ 2 and listen live on RTÉ Radio 1 on Sunday May 21. You can also keep up-to-date with our online match tracker on Sunday afternoon.