Limerick unchanged for Munster final

With no late injury worries, Mickey Ned O'Sullivan has settled on an unchanged Limerick team for Sunday's Munster SFC final against Kerry in Killarney (throw-in 2pm).

With no late injury worries, Mickey Ned O'Sullivan has settled on an unchanged Limerick team for Sunday's Munster SFC final against Kerry in Killarney (throw-in 2pm).

Conor Mullane is back in full training after missing the semi-final win over Waterford with a hamstring injury, but will have to be content with a place on the bench as Johnny McCarthy continues at full-back.

O'Sullivan's charges won the NFL Division 4 title in April and beat the Deise by 1-17 to 1-09 earlier this month in their only Championship game to date.

Limerick have not won the Munster title since 1896, and include 12 players from the side that lost last year's provincial decider to Cork by a point. Brian Scanlon, James Ryan and Andrew Lane will make their first Munster final starts this weekend.

The Shannonsiders have played in four Munster finals in the last decade, drawing with Kerry in 2004 before losing the replay, and they also lost finals to Kerry (2003) and Cork (2009).

Wing forward Seanie Buckley, Limerick's captain, said: "When you come close enough so often you're always looking to make the bigger jump. This year we are back in the final again.

"I suppose getting back there at the start of the year was our aim, but once you're there, at this stage of the year, you're hoping to go one better than last year and that's what we're hoping to do.

"A lot of teams in the Championship run teams close and don't quite get over the line. You see it week in, week out where the decisive team comes through by a point or two," he told the Limerick Leader.

"To actually make that step to where you're winning by a point or two is huge really. Now we've come close often enough. Last year we were beaten in two Championship games to knock us out by a point.

"This year the test is to be on the other side of a one-point win. That's going to be a huge challenge, but we're looking forward to it."

Buckley, who hails from the Drom-Broadford club, feels that the current squad, managed by Kerrymen O'Sullivan and Donie Buckley, is a stronger one than last year's panel.

He also admitted that their recent league success has given the players an extra boost of confidence.

"We're confident in our own ability and once we show up on the day and perform to the best of our ability, we definitely won't be too far off the mark.

"(Winning the league final) was definitely a boost. To know that when we get to a final that we can actually move that step further and win it. That has given us good confidence.

"It was our target at the start of the year; to get out of Division 4 and get back to a Munster final. Now we've done that and if we can draw on any of the experience we gained at Croke Park, hopefully it will add to our performance."

LIMERICK (SFC v Kerry): Brian Scanlon; Mark O'Riordan, Johnny McCarthy, Andrew Lane; Stephen Lavin, Stephen Lucey, Pa Ranahan; James O'Donovan, John Galvin; Padraig Browne, James Ryan, Seanie Buckley (capt); Ger Collins, Ian Ryan & Stephen Kelly.

Subs: Conor Ranahan, Shane Gallagher, Eoin Joy, Conor Fitzgerald, Eoghan O'Connor, John Mullane, Cormac Joyce-Power, Diarmiud Carroll, Raymond Hayes, Garrett Noonan, Seamus O'Carroll, Conor Mullane, John Cooke, Barry Fitzpatrick, Eoin Fitzigibbon.

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