Na Piarsiagh showed that they have every intent in holding onto their title after they swept aside South Liberties by 4-20 to 0-10 in Mungret.
Two goals in each half helped Michael Ryan’s men to a deserved victory. Kevin Downes and David Dempsey raised green flags in the opening half hour, while fellow county stars Conor Boylan and Peter Casey repeated the trick in the second half.
Shane Dowling’s second free of the game put Na Piarsaigh 0-3 to 0-2 ahead on 11 minutes and Downes’s first time finish accounted for their opening goal moments later.
Dempsey then fired in the second Na Piarsaigh goal seven minutes before half time, which helped the Daly Cup holders to a 2-7 to 0-5 lead at the break.
It was all Na Piarsaigh in the second half and by the time Boylan and Casey hit their third and fourth goals, the game was long over as a contest.
Patrickswell also got off to a win in the first round by beating Doon 1-13 to 0-10 in an ill-tempered game in Kilmallock.
John Flynn’s goal edged the game Patrickswell’s way early in the second half but Doon’s cause wasn’t helped by the straight red cards shown to Richie English and Darragh Stapleton in the 50th and 52nd minutes.
The sides were level six times in a fiery first half with Diarmaid Byrnes slotting four of Patrickswell’s seven points from placed balls.
Jason Gillane put Patrickswell 0-8 to 0-7 ahead four minutes into the second half before Flynn bagged the only goal of the game that set them on their way to a six-point victory.
Kilmallock made a winning start to the championship by seeing off Adare on a 0-18 to 0-13 scoreline in Bruff.
The game was level three times in the opening 10 minutes but Kilmallock hit form with points from Robbie Hanley, Michael Houlihan and Jake Mulcahy.
Charlie McCarthy got Adare’s first point from play in the 26th minute and further scores from Willie Griffin (two frees) and a sublime John Fitzgibbon sideline cut saw Brian Foley’s side lead 0-8 to 0-7 at the break.
Kilmallock were the dominant side in the second half with long-range efforts from Hanley and Paddy O'Loughlin putting them back ahead.
Further efforts by Oisin O'Reilly and Houlihan quickly followed, helping Kilmallock to a comfortable win.
Ballybrown made a victorious start to their campaign in Group 2 by sweeping Knockainey aside on a 1-23 to 0-13 scoreline in Bruff.
Having been relegated to from Group 1 last season, Ballybrown will be fully intent in making a return to the top flight and showed no mercy to Knockainey.
Andrew Cliffe and Shane Kenny impressed with two points apiece as Ballybrown powered into a 0-13 to 0-5 advantage at the short whistle.
The game continued in the same vein after the break with Ballybrown dominating and Ross Griffin’s goal saw them to the easiest of victories.
Monaleen came out on top of their Group 2 tie with Ahane on a 1-17 to 0-17 with a Ger Collins goal proving crucial on Friday night.
The city side were four points down at half time thanks to some ace shooting from Ahane’s Tom Morrissey. He helped himself to an impressive tally of 0-12 but it was not enough to earn Ahane an opening win.
Aided by a strong breeze in the second half, Monaleen soon drew level. Morrissey put Ahane ahead once more but Collins was the game-winner with the late goal.
The 2018 Premier Intermediate Championship winners, Garryspillane, were denied at the death in their Group 2 game with Murroe-Boher after Seanie Tobin’s injury-time free saw the game finish 2-12 to 0-18.
Murroe-Boher had the advantage of a strong breeze in Caherconlish and scored the first three points of the contest but the evergreen Donie Ryan got Garryspillane back into it with a well-taken goal.
Garryspillane trailed by 0-11 to 1-4 at half time but reduced the deficit to one point when James Ryan’s long delivery went all the way to the net 13 seconds into the second half.
That looked to have put Garryspillane on the road to victory but Tobin’s late salvo ensured that the spoils were shared.