Limerick v Dublin - Mattie Kenny


Despite a late surge, Mattie Kenny’s Dublin came up short against All Ireland Champions Limerick


Dublin 1-16
Limerick 1-19

Nowlan Park, Kilkenny

A defeat for Dublin this afternoon in the Allianz Hurling League Semi Final, but nothing to be disappointed about for Mattie Kenny in his first year in charge. The former Cuala manager has already improved on last year’s campaign under Pat Gilroy. And today will have given the boss a very good sense of where the Dubs are ahead of this year provincial championships.

The game was pretty much a stalemate for a long time, with Dublin only trailing the All Ireland Champions by one score at the break. But around the 52nd minute, Limerick upped the tempo to run 1-05 unanswered, which Dublin never fully recovered from.

From the start, Dublin matched Limerick almost point for point. The teams were level on seven occasions before Aaron Gillane’s point, which could easily have been a goal, put Limerick a score ahead. And at 0-10 to 0-09 on any other day, Mattie Kenny would have been pleased. But By the 25th minute the Dublin boss had been forced to make four changes. Oisin O’Rorke, Sean Treacy and Riain McBride all left the action injured. And Daire Gray had to be blood substituted until half time.

Several stepped up to the mark on both sides to make a thrilling encounter

Greame Mulcahy was an annoyance to Dublin for Limerick, registering three of his own scores and contributing to others. But Danny Sutcliffe and Eamonn Dillon were equally busy for the Dubs. Dillon’s pace was as ferocious as usual, grabbing an early brace. And the forward was also the source of some attention from the Limerick defence, yielding some much welcomed frees to keep Dublin ticking over.

Sutcliffe registered three first half scores, his third, an absolute beauty from the right wing following a drive out from defence by Eoghan O’Donnell.

Things stayed tight until around 20 minutes to go. Peter Casey’s 52nd minute point kickstarted Limerick’s drive home, as Dublin were on the backfoot for the first time in the game. 6 scores went without reply, including substitute Séamus Flanagan’s 61st minute goal, which looked to have his side in their first league final since 2006. A perfect long ball sent in from Diarmuid Byrnes was received by Cian Lynch. Lynch sent a cross-field ball to Flanagan, who fired past Alan Nolan and into the net.

Byrnes put Limerick nine clear soon after. But Ronan Hayes’ catch and batted goal rallied Dublin in the 64th minute, spurring his side down the home straight. Cian Lynch responded with a point, but it would be Limerick’s last of the day. Dublin finished the game cutting 0-04 off Limerick’s lead to leave their winning margin at 0-03.

Scorers for Dublin:

Paul Ryan 0-06 (6f)
Ronan Hayes 1-00
Danny Sutcliffe 0-03
Eamonn Dillon 0-03
Chris Crummey 0-01
Sean Moran 0-01 (1f)
Tomás Connolly 0-01
David Treacy 0-01

Scorers for Limerick:

Diarmaid Byrnes 0-05 (4f)
Aaron Gillane 0-05 (3f)
Séamus Flanagan 1-00
Graeme Mulcahy 0-03
Darragh O’Donovan 0-02
Cian Lynch 0-01
Gearoid Hegarty 0-01
Tom Morrissey 0-01
Peter Casey 0-01


1. Alan Nolan
2. Paddy Smyth
3. Eoghan O’Donnell
4. Dáire Gray
5. Chris Crummey
6. Seán Moran
7. Darragh O’Connell
8. Rian McBride
9. Seán Treacy
26. Shane Barrett
11. John Hetherton
12. Danny Sutcliffe
22. Cian Boland
14. Oisín O’Rourke
15. Eamonn Dillon

Dublin Substitutes:

23. Paul Ryan for O’Rorke (11)
17. Tomás Connolly for Gray (blood sub) (14)
13. Fergal Whitely for S. Treacy (21)
10. Jake Malone for McBride (25)
30. Gray for Connolly (HT)
25. Ronan Hayes for Hetherton (43)
19. David Treacy for Boland (52)


1. Nicky Quaid (Effin)
2. Tom Condon (Knockaderry)
3. Seán Finn (Bruff)
4. Richie English (Doon)
5. Diarmaid Byrnes (Patrickswell)
6. Dan Morrissey (Ahane)
7. Paddy O’Loughlin (Kilmallock)
8. Cian Lynch (Patrickswell)
9. Darragh O’Donovan (Doon)
10. Gearoid Hegarty (St. Patrick’s)
11. Kyle Hayes (Kildimo-Pallaskenry)
12. Tom Morrissey (Ahane) (captain)
13. Aaron Gillane (Patrickswell)
14. Peter Casey (Na Piarsaigh)
15. Graeme Mulcahy (Kilmallock)

Limerick Substitutes:

18. David Dempsey for T. Morrissey (52)
20. Séamus Flanagan for Mulcahy (55)
19. Conor Boylan for Hegarty (59)