Limerick manager John Kiely says that they are prepared for a “dog-eat-dog” Munster championship.
Cork and Limerick will go head to head on Sunday at the LIT Gaelic Grounds, with a crowd of up to 35,000 expected to attend.
In an interview for Bon Secours Hospital Limerick, the new sponsors of the Limerick senior club championship, Kiely said that the league defeat to Cork is a reminder of the challenge ahead.
“We’ve got Cork coming to town first game. They gave us a timely reminder (in the league) that when they do come to Limerick, they’ll be a force to be reckoned with.
“So, you can’t really look far beyond your first match in the competition. We know there are four games in it. But the latter games won’t mean anything unless you get something out of the early games.”
Kiely said there were enough reminders in the league of how big the challenge can be on any given day. He said it was impressive how the team conquered those challenges and contended with drops in performance.
“We’ve seen a couple of dips in our performances levels during the league but we were expecting them and we knew they’d come. It’s how you react, how you deal with those dips that’s important. That’s key to it.
“The boys I think dealt with it very well during the course of the league, in that game against Cork, in particular. We bounced back afterwards and got a couple of wins.
So, it’s going to be dog eat dog, it’s going be really, really difficult. Ultimately, we’re in a good place going into it. Confidence is high and we’re very much looking forward to it.
All-star Shane Dowling said there is a raw hunger for success among the team.
“I think Limerick’s greatest difficulty is actually getting out of Munster Championship. It’s so competitive. We’ve Waterford away, Limerick versus Clare; God only knows what could happen in that game. Liam Sheedy back in Tipp is obviously going to have them primed for that so it’s going to be difficult.
I think there’s only a handful of us that have Munster medals, the rest of lads don’t. And I know that’s something that they have on their agenda.