Joe McDonagh Cup final
Carlow v Offaly, Croke Park, 4.45pm
Leinster SHC round 5
Wexford v Kilkenny, Chadwicks Wexford Park, 2pm
Dublin v Galway, Croke Park, 2pm
Westmeath v Antrim, TEG Cusack Park, 2pm
Munster SHC round 5
Limerick v Cork, TUS Gaelic Grounds, 4pm
Tipperary v Waterford, FBD Semple Stadium, 4pm
Live blogs on RTÉ.ie and the RTÉ News app. Highlights also available across the weekend.
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Dublin v Galway and Limerick v Cork on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player.
Carlow v Offaly on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player.
Tipperary v Waterford on GAAGO.
Highlights of weekend action on The Saturday Game and The Sunday Game, both 9.30pm on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player.
Live commentary and updates on RTÉ Radio 1's Saturday and Sunday Sport. Also live updates on RTÉ Raidió na Gaeltachta's Spórt an Lae.
Saturday: Cloudy at times on Saturday with the odd shower possible. Mostly dry overall though, with occasional sunny breaks too. Light to moderate northwest breezes. Highs between 16 to 21 or 22 degrees, warmest in the south and southeast with the best of sunshine likely here.
Sunday: Somewhat cooler on Sunday with highs ranging from 14 degrees in the north to around 19 degrees in the south. Some cloud with sunny spells, becoming mostly sunny later in the afternoon. Just light northeast breezes.
Champions' titles on the line in Munster
They survived their first possible exit clause last weekend, but Limerick’s Munster and All-Ireland crowns could still be surrendered if they lose to Cork on Sunday. Even a draw could be fatal if Tipperary were to avoid defeat at home to Waterford.
John Kiely’s men drew with Tipp last week in a pulsating encounter, meaning their - and Cork’s - ambitions of reaching the All-Ireland stage comes down to the final round.
As Shane McGrath pointed out in his RTÉ column earlier this week, this is uncharted territory for four-in-a-row chasing Treaty as they have had their progression secured before the final round-robin game every time it has been run since its 2018 introduction [it was straight knock-out in 2020 and '21 due to Covid implications].
"The signs of this slippage are clear to see, no more so than when two former players of the year were substituted in the 50th and 57th minute in Thurles last Sunday," McGrath also said.
Those are the type of comments Kiely may be circling in the lead up to this game and passing onto those two players subbed off, Cian Lynch and Gearoird Hegarty.
Indeed, there has been plenty of punditry citing buzzwords such as hunger and fatigue in the lead up to this game.
It’s a far cry from what was said in the aftermath of their league title in April when people were wondering was this the best Limerick squad of all.
Kiely himself told The Sunday Game that the final win over Kilkenny "augers well in terms of the players’ attitude, their appetite for work, their appetite to play".
Sunday’s massive clash is a chance to remind the country of just how good this Limerick team really is.
Cork are the side hoping to spoil that ambition, and in doing so they would immediately make half a dozen counties sit up and think the Liam MacCarthy goal has become a bit more attainable. Not always the way, but the Rebels will have supporters from Clare to Kilkenny to Galway cheering them on in the hope that perhaps the best county team of all time will not be around for the red-hot summer battles.
This isn’t just a Limerick story, but a Cork one too. Defeat and they’re gone.
The margins are thin in Munster as Cork know all too well. After defeating Waterford, they needed a late surge to earn a draw with Tipperary. Last weekend, they looked on course for draw number two but Clare wing-back Diarmuid Ryan had other ideas with a last-gasp winner in Ennis.
In reality that lost point has had little impact on their situation. If they had drawn, they still would have needed to get something from Limerick unless Waterford shocked Tipp.
The Rebels have had a good spread of scorers in their three games to date, Patrick Horgan [1-25], Declan Dalton [2-06] and Darragh Fitzgibbon [1-07] leading the way.
What will be most pleasing for their fans this season is the presence of that bit of steel that they have been accused of lacking in recent seasons. No better place – and situation – to stress test that.
The winners of Limerick and Cork – and even the latter if it ends in a draw – could still find themselves meeting Clare in the Munster final, but that would take Tipperary to falter against Waterford and there just seems little chance of that.
The Premier County's preparations were briefly inconvenienced by a proposed four-week suspension for manager Liam Cahill after his red card against Limerick on Sunday. However his appeal was successful and he will be on the line in Thurles.
There will also be plenty of attention on Waterford boss Davy Fitzgerald and rather than being the walk-over many expect, the Déise will surely be up for this having taken their fair share of flak following three straight defeats.
That leaves their season over before it really got started but Fitzgerald delivered an emphatic message after their loss to Clare.
"I won’t take anything personal. I’m used to getting battered over the last few years and that’s fine, work away. I’m f**king going no place."
Much has been made of Waterford’s inability to compete in the round-robin stages – 15 games and 13 defeats speaks volumes – but they will be billing this in-house as a big one-off Munster derby.
Calum Lyons is available as his first-half red card against Clare was a second booking and with Waterford’s fate already decider, they may opt against being as defensive as they have been in earlier rounds.
Wexford facing the drop in Leinster
Too big to fail – a saying that may have caused some rolled eyes in Wexford this week. If they end the weekend in the Joe McDonagh Cup, they will be there because they deserve to be.
Offaly showed that big names can drop down the hurling levels when the house isn’t in order having played tier three hurling in 2020 and 2021 before bouncing back up to the Joe McDonagh Cup.
Two weeks after Offaly dropped into the Christy Ring in 2019, Wexford were crowned kings of Leinster after defeating Kilkenny at Croke Park.
How they would love another win over the Cats this weekend to maintain their Leinster championship status.
It’s not all or nothing at Chadwicks Wexford Park. Lose though and they’ll be needing a favour off their shock conquerors last weekend, Westmeath.
There is no Damien Reck in the squad but manager Darragh Egan has recalled Kevin Foley and Diarmuid O'Keeffe in midfield. He will be glad to have some leaders back in the fray. He said this week that they need them all to show up.
Kilkenny are not in the Leinster final, but they are as good as.
Even with a defeat here, they’d need Dublin to upset Galway at Croke Park to have any chance of missing out. If those two results occurred, they still enter the weekend with a scoring difference that is 37 points better off than Dublin’s.
Likewise, Galway and Dublin start the day knowing that a Leinster final spot is within their grasp, but it’s much more attainable for Henry Shefflin’s side who have amassed an incredible 12-112 in their four games to date. Eleven of those goals have come in their last two games – against Westmeath and Antrim – with Conor Whelan plundering five in that time.
Galway are four seasons without the Bob O’Keefe Cup, so there should be some determination to reach the final and a chance to end that wait.
Dublin missed out on the All-Ireland series on scoring difference last season, so to be through with a round to spare is a real positive for Micheál Donoghue’s side.
Donal Burke, of course, will lead their charge, but to have any chance they’ll need a lot more to be on their attacking game.
It was inevitable that Westmeath’s round five clash with Antrim would have serious relegation implications, but the picture is different that anyone expected.
That’s down to Westmeath’s aforementioned win over Wexford and as a result, they can lose here and still remain in Leinster if the Model County fall to Kilkenny due to the head-to-head rule.
They’ll want to avoid relying on other results though and you can only imagine the buoyancy at training this week as Joe Fortune’s side aim to add another win to their season.
That Westmeath-Wexford result also means that Antrim can no longer survive with a point, having already earned a draw with Dublin. They must win.
Darren Gleeson’s side are not renowned as good travellers with most of their recent good news stories coming at Corrigan Park, and the fact that a number of key men are injured, such as Neil McManus and Eoghan Campbell, only add to the task.
Daniel McKernan did make his return from long-term injury against Galway last week, nabbing two points after coming in off the bench, and he’ll surely see more action on Sunday.
Offaly and Carlow battle it out in Joe McDonagh final
The RTÉ cameras will be at Croke Park on Saturday as Offaly and Carlow battle it out in the Joe McDonagh Cup final.
The Faithful County are looking for their first title having missed out on a final spot last year on scoring difference. Carlow were the inaugural winners of the competition back in 2018 when they edged a high-scoring final with Westmeath.
These two sides met in the final round of this year's group stages and Carlow won out by 18 points, but keep in mind that Offaly had already booked their final place by then.
The Offaly teamsheet was very different than what will take to the field on Saturday as they aim to return to the Leinster Championship.
They may have endured tough times in recent years, but there is no doubt that the mood is changing with their under-20s claiming the Leinster title recently after a thrilling win over Wexford. The diminutive Adam Screeney has set pulses racing and how important would it be for Offaly to be back amongst the best when he and some of his team-mates make the step up?
Their U20 final with Cork has been pushed back a week meaning Charlie Mitchell, Sam Bourke and Joe Hoctor will enter tomorrow’s final without the strain of knowing they would miss out on the Rebel game if they played against Carlow.
Carlow have been a bit of a thorn in Offaly’s side – it was their final-round win that cost the Faithful a spot in the decider in 2022 – and Tom Mullally’s side bring real confidence into this. Before that win over Offaly’s second string, they went up to Ballycran – usually a fortress for the hosts – and put 6-23 on Down.
Mullally is a man who knows his way to silverware, having won plenty with Kilkenny’s Clara, where he was a coach, Carlow’s Mount Leinster Rangers and Kildare’s Naas.
With the exception of Laois’s 11-point win over Westmeath in 2019, McDonagh finals usually end up tight – Antrim coming close to throwing away a 12-point lead to Kerry last year – with an average winning margin of just north of four points if that final of four years ago is excluded.
Offaly are favourites, but expect this one to go the distance.
Watch the Joe McDonagh Cup final, Carlow v Offaly, live on Saturday from 4.30pm on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player. Follow updates on all of the day's GAA action on the RTÉ News app, RTÉ.ie/Sport or radio updates on Saturday Sport on RTÉ Radio 1
Watch a hurling double-header, Dublin v Galway and Limerick v Cork, from 1.30pm on Sunday on RTÉ2 and RTÉ Player, follow a live blog on the RTÉ News app or RTÉ.ie/Sport or listen to live radio updates on Sunday Sport on RTÉ Radio 1