Hurling and camogie


EAMONN HIGH: Eamonn Dillon and Dublin will look to take out another big gun after their shock win in Tipperary Picture Seamus Loughran
Compiled by Padraig Kelly

National Hurling League semi-finals

Limerick v Dublin

(tomorrow, Nowlan Park, 1.30pm, live on TG4)

DUBLIN are the surprise packets in the last four and their win over Tipperary opens the door to a first final appearance since 2011.

Limerick also won League silverware that year, but it was the old Division Two title after a run of wins that included a victory in Portaferry against a Down side that was on level terms until the 58th minute.

A lot has changed for the Treaty county since then and the current All-Ireland holders are favourites to claim a first Division One title since 1997.

They ruthlessly tore Laois apart in the quarter-final with Seamus Flanagan and Conor Boylan grabbing the goals in the 2-22 to 0-11 win at O'Moore Park.

John Kiely started only six of the players who lined out in last year's All-Ireland final but they are expected to be stronger tomorrow. Two more options have popped up in the form of Na Piarsaigh duo Mike Casey and William O'Donoghue who recently returned to training.

Mattie Kenny's Dublin showed real heart in their surprise 1-21 to 0-23 win over Tipp in Thurles.

They led by four points at half-time thanks to Eamonn Dillon's goal but the hosts, backed by a strong wind, had wiped that lead out just three minutes into the second half.

Only one outcome looked possible from there on in but Dillon, Seán Moran and Oisín O'Rourke all made big scoring contributions to secure the county's first win over Tipperary at the venue since 1946.

When all was said and done one statistic stood out though, and that was Tipperary's wide count of 18.

Limerick are unlikely to be as wasteful tomorrow and they should qualify for their first Division One final in 13 years.

Odds: Limerick: 2/9 D: 10/1 Dublin: 9/2

Verdict: Limerick

Galway v Waterford

(tomorrow, Nowlan Park, 3.30pm, live on TG4)

RECENT League meetings between these two counties have been closely run affairs with the last three clashes delivering a draw, a three-point Galway win and a two-point success for Waterford.

The latest of those came just a few weeks ago when the Déise produced a magnificent wind inspired comeback to overturn a 10-point interval deficit to win by two with Shane Bennett grabbing the winning goal in injury time.

It was his brother Stephen who took centre stage in the quarter-final as he hit 16 points, including 14 frees, in the 0-31 to 1-14 win over Clare.

It was his second time hitting that total this season having done likewise against Offaly and he now has 3-69 after just six games.

It would appear that Páraic Fanning has let his attackers off the leash somewhat compared to predecessor Derek McGrath but the current manager puts their high scoring simply down to good decision making.

It's unlikely that the Tribesmen will have their St Thomas' contingent back after their All-Ireland final loss to Ballyhale last week, likewise Daithi Burke who played a key role as Corofin lifted the football title at the expense of Dr Croke's.

Micheál Donoghue's side produced a superb 35 minutes of hurling to dump out Wexford in the quarter-final.

They had the wind in the first half but trailed 3-5 to 0-13 at half-time. Then came a third quarter charge as they hit 2-5 to Wexford's single point to take complete control.

Once again Joe Canning was at the heart of everything they did that was good and he can be the match winner here.

Odds: Galway: 4/5 D: 8/1 Waterford: 11/8

Verdict: Galway

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