Defending champions Limerick draw Clare in Munster U21 opener

Defending champions Limerick will have to go the long route if they are to retain the Munster U21 hurling title following last night’s draw at Aras na Mumhan in Castletroy.

The All-Ireland holders were drawn with Clare in the preliminary round of the 2018 competition, with the winners advancing to meet Tipperary in the semi-final.

Cork will clash with Waterford in the other last-four tie, a repeat of the counties’ meeting this year, when Declan Dalton scored a late penalty to gain victory for the Rebels.

In the new U20 football championship, Tipperary will meet Cork, and Limerick will clash with Kerry in the quarter-finals.

Clare await the winners of the Tipp/Cork tie while Waterford will face the side to come through from the other game.

The Munster Council have opted to employ a round-robin system for next year’s provincial minor hurling championship, in tandem with the new senior structure.

Each game in the minor championship will act as a curtain-raiser for its senior equivalent, with the top two sides then advancing to the final.

However, while the third-placed senior side will take part in a play-off for a place in the All-Ireland semi-finals, at minor level only the two finalists will advance to the All-Ireland series.

Meanwhile, the draw for the minor football championship was deferred to a later date, again pending agreement on the format.

Clare, Cork, Kerry and Limerick are set to contest the Co-Op Munster HL. The fixtures will be determined on Friday, December 8, with the first round of games on Saturday, December 30 and the final pencilled in for January 21.

Munster U21HC quarter-final:

Clare v Limerick; semi-finals: Cork v Waterford, Tipperary v Clare/Limerick.

Munster U20FC quarter-finals:

Tipperary v Cork, Limerick v Kerry; semi-finals: Clare v Tipperary/Cork, Waterford v Limerick/Kerry.

Meanwhile, The Munster Council announced last night details of the 2017 Development Grant Scheme, which has provided €1,004,700 in funding for club and school capital development projects across the province.

Under the scheme, Clare received €118,600 from 10 applications, Cork received €344,229 from 38 applications, Limerick received €185,258 from 18 applications, Kerry received €93,308 from 15 applications, Tipperary received €202,413 from 23 applications and Waterford received €60,886 from 7 applications.

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