Former Limerick hurler Ciaran Carey believes that the current crop of Treaty players are the best he’s seen come out of the county.

Limerick travel to Croke Park on Sunday to take on Galway in the All-Ireland hurling final, seeking to bring the Liam MacCarthy cup back to the Treaty County for the first time in 45 years.

During his time as a Limerick player, Carey won two Munster titles and was named an All Star three times and while the All-Ireland title always eluded him and his county, he believes that’s about to change.

Carey - who has been named on the GAA's Team Of The 90s - has seen this young Limerick team grow in confidence and stature as the year has progressed and he insists that they current side is as good as they’ve produced in 30 years.

Speaking on 2fm’s Game On, he said: "I wasn’t surprised because at the start of the year I could see what was manifesting during the league campaign, that it was possibly the strongest and the best squad that I’ve seen coming out of Limerick in my time.

"When you see that, you have to say it as you see and it’s their time now. There’s a lot more in this squad, even when you get Sunday out of the way.

"I believe that Limerick have another two or three gears in them. When you’re facing an All-Ireland final, that is going to maximise the potential that you have as an individual and as a team."

The lack of experience for Limerick at this level and the relative youth of the squad has been pointed to in the build-up to the final, with many observers questioning whether Limerick will be able to cope with the big occasion.

However, Carey is confident that they’re more than ready to cope with the pressure and pointed to March’s league victory over Galway, in which Limerick battled from behind to win and seal promotion from Division 1B.

"They’ve had a lot of examinations this year and they had a great examination against Galway at the start of the year in Salthill when they were down 10 points and to be fair they passed that exam," Carey said.

"That will stand to them hugely going into this Sunday.

"There was a lot of talk in the semi-final, ‘is it going to be Clare?’; ‘will if suit Limerick if it’s Clare or will it suit Limerick if it’s Galway?’.

"It was irrelevant really because Limerick seem to be sticking to the process, sticking to their own game plan, irrespective of the colour of the jersey. I think Sunday won’t faze them.

"They had a lovely test drive in the semi-final and there is a lot of side-shows leading up to the quarter-final, the semi-final and the final, but at the end of the day the players are professional enough.

"They’ll be 110% focused on the actual match."

We need your consent to load this rte-player contentWe use rte-player to manage extra content that can set cookies on your device and collect data about your activity. Please review their details and accept them to load the content.Manage Preferences


Follow the All-Ireland senior hurling final via our live blog on RTÉ.ie and the News Now App, watch television coverage on The Sunday Game Live, RTÉ 2, from 2.15pm or listen to exclusive national radio commentary on Sunday Sport, RTÉ Radio 1. Highlights on The Sunday Game at 9.30pm on RTÉ 2.