Limerick and Clare ring the changes ahead of minor hurling qualifier

THE Limerick team to play Clare in the ESB Munster MHC semi-final qualifier in Cusack Park tonight (6.30pm), shows six changes from the team trounced by Cork in the first round.

Nicky Quaid, who played wing back against Cork, replaces Brian Hennessy, with Mark Fenton taking Quaid's place in the half back line. John O'Riordan takes over from Padraig Behan at left corner back, Paudie O'Brien moves from midfield to right half back in place of James Mann; Ger Collins moves from left half forward to midfield; Damien Quaid comes in at left half forward, while Thomas Crawford and Donie Reale replace Tiernan Ryan and Tom O'Brien in the full forward line.

Clare have made five changes from the team which defeated Kerry last time out. Gone are James Gunning, Derek Ryan, Keith Whelan, Jack Neylon and John Reidy who are replaced by Eamon Glynn, Colm Madden, Enda Barrett, John Conlon and Joe O'Connor respectively.

Positional switches see Donal O'Donovan move from right half to right corner back and team captain Conor Tierney cross from right corner to left corner forward.

The winners will join Cork, Tipperary and Waterford in the semi-finals with the losers going out for another year.

Meanwhile, Cork will be forced into making at least one change in their U-21 team from the side which crushed Waterford in the Munster final, for Sunday's All-Ireland football semi-final against Laois in the Gaelic Grounds, Limerick (3.30pm).

Corner forward Roy Leahy broke his arm playing with his club in the county SFC at the weekend and will be out for at least eight weeks. The selectors have postponed naming their team in the hope that John Hayes will be fit.

The Carbery Rangers man broke a bone in his hand in the Munster semi-final win over Tipperary and missed the final. He is due to have the plaster removed at the weekend, and would be more than an adequate replacement for Leahy.

Cork announce their team tonight after training.

LIMERICK (MHC v Clare):N. Quaid (Effin); B. Moloney (Blackrock), C. Cagney (Granagh/Ballingarry), J. Riordan (Templeglentine); P. O'Brien (Kilmallock), B. Quinn (Ballybrown), M. Fenton (Doon); G. Collins (Milford), D. O'Connor (Granagh/Ballingarry); J. Carroll (Croom), S. O'Donnell (Kilmallock), D. Quaid (St. Marys Rathkeale); M. Ryan (Doon), T. Crawford (Glenroe), D. Reale (Hospital/Herbertstown).

Subs:M. Conway (Patrickswell), P. Behan (Croom), T. O'Brien (Murroe/Boher); D. Walsh (Knockainey), J. Mann (Patrickswell), E. O'Brien (Kildimo), S. Donohue (Crecora), G. Murphy (Caherline), J. Moroney (Tournafulla), C. Casey (Croagh/Kilfinny), M. Doyle (Monaleen), P. Riordan (Dromin/Athlacca), T. Ryan (do.).

CLARE (MHC v Limerick): C. Hannon (Clooney Quinn); D. O'Donovan (Clonlara), J. Moloney (do.), N. O'Connell (do.); E. Glynn (Kilnamona), C. Duggan (Clooney Quinn), C. Madden (Bodyke); C. Ryan (Newmarket-on-Fergus), E. Barrett (do.); C. O'Donovan (Clonlara), C. Morey (Sixmilebridge), J. Conlon (Clonlara); J. O'Connor (Parteen), D. Reidy (Wolfe Tones), C. Tierney (Kilnamona).

Subs: A. Murnane (Parteen), J. Gunning (Broadford), D. Ryan (Clooney Quinn), E. O'Brien (Newmarket on Fergus), K. Whelan (St. Josephs Doora/Barefield), J. Neylon (Tubber), C. Neylon (Kilmaley), D. McMahon (Eire Og Ennis), C. O'Doherty (Crusheen).

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