Friday 31 August 2007

All Ireland Hurling Final 2007

Unsurprisingly, Kilkenny return to Croke Park this Sunday to defend the title they reclaimed from Cork a year ago. Big surprise, it's Limerick who they face in this year's decider.
Earlier in the season it seemed likely that Cork or Waterford would be the Cats' opponents, but it's the Shannon-siders who fought back from a Munster final defeat to gain their revenge on the Deise in the All-Ireland semi.

I'm a bit torn as to the outcome on Sunday. My head screams Kilkenny all the way; that they are too experienced; that they have too many All-Stars in their team; that Limerick have only one player who has been this far before; that the semi-final win was the best Limerick could have hoped for; and on and on.

At the same time I can see them do it. They are riding a crest at the moment. Confidence is high and the team is hurling very well. Andrew O'Shaughnessy is obviously key, as well as goals. I don't think the men in green score enough points and I can't see them matching Kilkenny point for point (the Cats regularly score 20+ in a game).
Also, I think five finals in six years may actually be a disadvantage. Looking at last years final I couldn't help but feel Cork were a tired team - it must be incredibly draining on both the body and mind to play at that high a level, year in, year out. Limerick are hungry and that will be important, equally so how they deal with the nerves.

My head says Kilkenny by six, but if limerick can stay in it, they may just nick it at the death.

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