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Brian Adam
Professional Blogger, V logger, traveler and explorer of new horizons.

This NHL 1A opener went to Limerick after a dramatic second half in which they improved hugely to overcome Tipperary.

The home side opened with Jason Forde (two) and Jake Morris points, leading 0-3 to 0-0 after ten minutes.

Aaron Gillane (free) and Dan Morrissey opened Limerick’s account, but Morris, Forde (sideline) and John McGrath (two) responded: 0-7 to 0-2 at the end of the first quarter.

Tipp were far sharper and livelier, particularly up front: Willie Connors and David Dempsey swapped points but three more Forde frees made it 0-11 to 0-3 on 25 minutes, and Paddy Cadell lofted over another Tipp point soon after.

Tom Morrissey hit a good Limerick point but Forde pointed yet another free: 0-13 to 0-4 at the half.

The second half resumed with Morris and Gillane (free) swapping points but another Gillane free, David Dempsey and Diarmaid Byrnes cut into Tipp’s lead: 0-14 to 0-8, 44 minutes in.

John McGrath hit a good point on the run and then Gillane struck, coming onto a Will O’Donoghue pass to finish well: 1-8 to 0-15 on 47 minutes and the initiative well and truly Limerick’s.

Dempsey and Gillane (free) added points soon after for Limerick to make it 1-10 to 0-15, though Forde pointed in response: 1-10 to 0-16 entering the third quarter.

In the 53rd minute Limerick sub Gearoid Hegarty then got on the end of a loose ball to finish to the net from an acute angle: 2-10 to 0-16.

Forde and Gillane swapped scores, leaving the sides level, before Gillane nudged his side ahead and Byrnes added a long-range free: 2-13 to 0-17 with five minutes left.

Forde, inevitably, cut that lead to one but sub Seamus Flanagan pointed on the puck-out. Forde – equally inevitably – went for goal with a late, late free but Limerick held out for a terrific win.

Scorers for Tipperary: J. Forde (0-10) (0-8 frees, 1 sideline); J. McGrath J. Morris (0-3 each); P. Cadell, W. Connors (0-1 each).

Scorers for Limerick: A. Gillane (1-6)(6 frees), G. Hegarty (1-0), D. Dempsey (0-3); T. Morrissey, D. Byrnes (0-2 each); S. Flanagan (0-1).

TIPPERARY: B. Hogan, C. Barrett, R. Maher, S. O’Brien, A. Flynn, S. Kennedy, P. Maher, M. Breen, P. Cadell, W. Connors, J. McGrath, B. O’Mara, M. Kehoe, J. Forde (c), J. Morris.

Subs: P. Flynn and D. Quirke for Connors and Kehoe (53); C. Morgan for A. Flynn (60); C. Darcy for Breen (65); J. Moloney for Kennedy (67)

LIMERICK: B. Hennessy, T. Condon, M. Casey, R. English, D. Byrnes, D. Morrissey, B. Nash, R. Hanley, C. Lynch (c), D. O’Donovan, T. Morrissey, D. Reidy, A. Gillane, G. Mulcahy, D. Dempsey.

Subs: S. Finn for M. Casey (25); W. O’Donoghue for Hanley (30); G. Hegarty for Reidy (48); S. Flanagan for Mulcahy (55)

Referee: P. Murphy (Carlow).

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