‘We can prove we are a quality team’

JOHN QUANE has experienced many heartbreaking afternoons in 15 years as a Limerick senior footballer.

Yesterday’s defeat to Kerry in the Munster SFC semi-final will rank among the worst.

After gifting the visitors a dream start, Limerick produced another battling display that caused more than a few palpitations for the All-Ireland champions.

But Quane, who once again produced an inspirational display,was magnanimous in defeat.

“Yes, it goes without saying that this was a major disappointment,” he admitted.

“We failed to get out of blocks and found ourselves a goal down after seconds. We could have been hit for three but for two fantastic saves by Seamus O’Donnell.

“It was the worse possible start but things began to look up for us when we led by three points at half-time and increased our advantage to four with a point from Stephen Lavin immediately after the resumption.

“But,” said Quane, “a combination of factors heralded our demise.

“First there was the brilliant accuracy of Colm Cooper, who brought them back into the game with a vengeance.

“Then there was the sending off of Mark O’Riordan and when Kerry put on their fresh legs they closed the game out.”

Quane believes Kerry’s strength in depth may be the key to them retaining the All-Ireland title.

“In my opinion Kerry’s strength lies within their substitutes. What team could afford to start a match with the likes of Seamus Moynihan and William Kirby sitting on the bench?”

“Overall though I would have to say that Kerry’s greater penetration up front won the game for them.”

So another disappointing post mortem for Limerick football, but Quane is convinced, that Limerick can bounce back in the qualifiers.

“Hopefully we will pick ourselves up and prove in the qualifiers that we are a quality team.

“We have had a lot of knockers in recent times but the bones of the side is the same that gave Kerry such a fright last year. And we proved on occasions in this game that we can still live with the best.”

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