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gaa preview 09/06/2023 clare ready to inflict telling wound on limerick sport preview

GAA Preview 09/06/2023: Clare ready to inflict telling wound on Limerick

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Selections

GAA Preview 09/06/2023: Sunday from 1:45pm

Hurling is back on centre stage this weekend with a Super Sunday double bill featuring the Munster and Leinster provincial finals.

First up it’s to the Gaelic Grounds, with Clare travelling into the Lion’s Den to face off against Limerick, while later in the afternoon, Galway will tackle Kilkenny in Croke Park to decide the Leinster final.

The Hurling championship has been an absolute firecracker so far and there’s no reason to believe these two high-octane collisions will let it down.

Selections

  • Clare to beat Limerick – 37/20
  • Kilkenny & Galway to draw – 8/1

*Prices subject to fluctuation.

Clare may have Limerick’s number

Clare vs Limerick, Gaelic Grounds, Limerick – Sunday 11th June, 1.45pm

– Live on RTE2

If Clare are to win the Munster Championship on Sunday, it will end a 25-year wait since they last engineered provincial glory and, in doing so, they will have had to beat four-in-a-row winners Limerick not once, but twice, in their own backyard.

A point was all that split these sides when they met in the final days of April, the Banner coming out best on a 1-24 to 2-20 scoreline after a typically rousing joust.

Both teams are missing key players; Conor Cleary for Clare and Sean Finn for Limerick. John Kiely has more strength in depth at his disposal but it still seems a certainty that his hand is weakened with Finn’s absence.

Clare boss Brian Lohan has adopted an aggressive man-to-man approach in recent clashes between these sides and that manic willingness to go after Limerick will be key again here.

For Limerick, this season has uncovered some apparent weaknesses. Clare don’t seem burdened by a fear-factor when they enter the battlefield against the Treaty.

It required extra time in Semple Stadium last June to separate these sides and, a year on, Clare have added depth to their panel via some excellent graduates from the U-20 set-up while the air of invincibility around Limerick has been punctured to some degree.

Limerick are not the irresistible force of old, but they are worthy favourites nonetheless. Clare, trading at 9/4, are likely to be within a score either way coming down the home straight and for that reason, they are the best bet in what promises to be a pulsating game.


Cats may struggle to corner King Henry

Kilkenny vs Galway, Croke Park, Dublin – Sunday 11th June, 4.00pm

– Live on RTE2

Galway qualified for the Leinster SHC final after a remarkable comeback draw against Dublin last time out but it was a performance that left reason for fear.

Henry Shefflin saw his side hit 16 wides in the first half, trailing by ten at the break and by as many as 12 soon after half-time, only for an inspired comeback aided by Evan Niland’s ten points.

Indeed, it looked as if they would win the game only for Donal Burke’s late free to give Dublin a draw that sent them to an All-Ireland preliminary quarter-final.

Galway, for their part, face Kilkenny in the Leinster decider most had forecast from some way out.

Helping to cloud any judgement was their round robin stalemate at Nowlan Park in April, a contest that had a hint of shadow boxing about it so early in the championship race.

Kilkenny still have the ace up their sleeve in TJ Reid but he is being managed to last in games now more so than ever. Galway must be wary of allowing the veteran sharp-shooter have a decisive role from dead balls.

Derek Lyng would love a Leinster title to mark his first season after stepping into the breach left by Brian Cody. His opposite number Shefflin knows only too well that Galway need a statement success.

The Cats have leaked goals at times this season and Galway will take heart in that. The Tribesmen have come close on the big stage in the past without completing the job. They may well do that now, but it could require extra time to split this pair and at 8/1 the draw is forecast after 70 minutes.


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