All-Ireland SHC: Ulster players call the final

We asked players from across Ulster to call the meeting of Limerick and Tipperary.

Meehaul McGrath, Derry

My heart says Cork, my head says Limerick. I would love to see Patrick Horgan win an All-Ireland but I think Limerick’s big-game experience will just see them over the line.

I would expect a fairly physical, hard-hitting game with plenty of good hurling to go along with it.

I will be looking out for Robert Downey. I thought he was very impressive the last day against Kilkenny but it will be interesting to see how he performs against Seamus Flanagan.

Verdict: Limerick


I think Limerick will win in the end up but it’ll be a close game for about 55, 60 minutes.

If Cork are to win, they’ll have to bring something new to the table as this Limerick team are just as comfortable playing a finesse brand of hurling as they are a physical brand.

If Gearóid Hegarty and Tom Morrissey click like they did in last year’s final, Limerick should win by five or six points.

Verdict: Limerick


Although I’d be a fan of Cork and would love to see them do the business, I think it’s very hard to look past Limerick on Sunday.

They seem to be operating on a different level than most teams in the past couple of years and their squad has basically no weak link in my opinion. However if Cork can tighten up their full-back line, and stay in the game until the last 10 or 15 minutes, then who knows what could happen?

Going by the semi-finals, you’d imagine a fairly high-scoring game.

I think one of the biggest match-ups to look out for is Mark Coleman and Cian Lynch. I’d be watching to see if Coleman goes man-to-man or does he sit back and hold. You’d imagine for Cork to win, Mark Coleman would need to win this battle.

Verdict: Limerick


It’s hard to look past Limerick. They seem to have all the tools, with quality players all over the pitch and also on their bench. However, Cork were very impressive in their semi-final and have a very sharp forward line, so I think it will be a close game. Limerick to edge it.

I expect a very fast and high-scoring game. Both teams have shown throughout the year that they can rack up big scores. I expect the same on Sunday.

As a goalkeeper, Nickie Quaid and Patrick Collins are the players that I will be looking out for. Two top all-round goalkeepers. They both made several crucial saves in the semi-finals and their distribution is key to setting up their teams’ attacks, which will be a huge factor on Sunday.

Verdict: Limerick


It’s going to be a big, high-scoring match. I think it’s going to be a very physical match as well because the two teams are well made up.

Limerick are huge, and they play with such a good system at the moment, but both teams are playing well at the minute.

Kyle Hayes is a player I’ll be looking out for. It’ll be interesting to see what Cork do with him. Will they put a man on him to run at him and make him defend or will they let him attack and put someone there nearly to defend him?

Cian Lynch will have a lot to say on the day as well.

I’ll tip Limerick. I just can’t see them being beat at the minute. Four years together playing now and playing well, they know each other and the system. They’re too strong.

Verdict: Limerick


I think Limerick will win, with all the experience and quality they have, and they still seem to have the hunger to win.

I’d expect a close game, Limerick normally finish strongly but Cork’s bench was excellent against Kilkenny. Patrick Horgan, if he has another good day, then Cork have a great chance.

Verdict: Limerick


I’d be surprised if someone doesn’t think Limerick are going to win it. They just seem so much stronger and faster on and off the ball.

Their performance in the semi-final was outrageous. Cork will need to be at their absolute best to rattle them.

It’s hard to know what sort of game it will be. I say Limerick will win it but the All-Ireland final has generally always produced some cracking games of hurling.

I imagine it will be a high-scoring game. The winning will likely come down to who can keep their discipline.

I’ve a few players in mind that I will want to keep an eye on but I will probably watch Cian Lynch the closest, simply because of the skill he has.

You never know what kind of magic he’ll produce. I always enjoy a bit of flair on a hurling field.

Verdict: Limerick


I think Limerick will win, they have a great system in place and they play it with near perfection every time and never panic regardless of the scoreboard as we saw against Tipperary at half time.

Obviously their physicality is a big advantage out around the middle third also.

I expect a good, fast-paced game of hurling with plenty of scores. Both teams play a lovely style of hurling and really get their forwards on the ball with quality movement inside.

I think the main battle is between two players, Cian lynch and Mark Coleman. I’m looking out for these two players because it will be interesting to see if Lynch lets Coleman play that free sweeper role he has been playing all year which he supplies great ball into the forward line or will he push up on him and put him under pressure to stop the supply going in. It will be a key match-up for sure.

Verdict: Limerick


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