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All set for rematch of ’09 nail-biter

They had to meet twice at this stage of the competition last year before there was a winner and it could well be that a replay will also be required this time around when Shannon’s St Caimin’s clash with Ard Scoil Rís Limerick in the semi-final of the Dr Harty Cup on Sunday.
Meelick is again the venue (2.30pm) as it was for both games 12 months ago and the match should attract another big attendance to the popular South Clare venue.
After a 1-12 each draw. St Caimin’s scored a four-point win, 0-11 to 1-4, in the replay and they will be attempting to repeat that result this time around.
Going on the respective line-outs from their quarter-final games, each side has seven members of last year’s starting 15 in this year’s teams.
For the second year in a row a Cratloe player captains the Limerick side. This year, wing-back Cathal McInerney shares the captaincy with Patrickswell’s Seán O’Brien, succeeding Conor Ryan who led the team from midfield last year. McInerney will come up against his clubmates Enda Boyce and Paudge Collins, who are members of the St Caimin’s side.
Both sides have joint captains this year as Kevin Lynch and Paudge Collins lead the Shannon school.
Sixmilebridge player Jamie Shanahan, a substitute last year, is a member of the starting line-up with Ard Scoil this year and he will face up to six of his clubmates in Eanna Byrnes, Noel Purcell, Kevin Lynch, Cathal O’Connor, Alan Mulready and Pa Sheehan. In fact, Shanahan will be in direct opposition to his clubmate Byrnes if both are chosen in the same positions they filled last time out.
Neither side has won this prestigious title and neither are hiding their determination to change that statistic. Indeed, Ard Scoil have never passed the semi-final stage, while St Caimin’s contested the final for the first time in the school’s history 12 months ago, following their victory over Sunday’s opponents.
A bright start which yielded 1-2 in the opening three minutes and a storming finish, which saw them claw back a two-point deficit in the last two minutes, were two of the big talking points from the drawn game which was played before a big attendance last year
The decision of the St Caimin’s mentors to switch Kevin Lynch from attack to centre-back during that tie proved crucial and centre-back is where the Sixmilebridge teenager is expected to play this week.
Other survivors from last year that St Caimin’s will be looking to for inspiration this time out include goalkeeper Tommy Griffin, full back Noel Purcell, Paudge Collins, who is expected to lead the attack, Alan Mulready and, Pa Sheehan
Ard Scoil will have three from Clare in their starting line-up with McInerney being joined by Shanahan and Parteen’s Martin Moroney, while Seán O’Connor from Meelick and Shane Crehan from O’Callaghan’s Mills may make an appearance during the course of the game.
Centre back Declan Hannon delivered some outstanding performances for his club, Adare, in Limerick this season, while others that the Limerick city school will be looking to include Alan Dempsey, Shane Dowling, Kevin Downes, Seán O’Brien and goalkeeper PJ Hall.
It has all the ingredients of a cracking contest that really could go either way.

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