Tuesday 26 September 2017

Revenge on the cards for Lohan's UL

Independent.ie Fitzgibbon Cup semi-final (extra-time if necessary) University Limerick v Limerick IT, LIT Grounds, 2.45, J McGrath (Westmeath)

Brian Lohan, University of Limerick manager
Brian Lohan, University of Limerick manager
Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

This is a rivalry on a couple of different fronts, with these Limerick opponents renewing acquaintances after meeting in the competition last year, while they are both managed by former Clare All-Ireland winning team-mates Davy Fitzgerald (LIT) and Brian Lohan (UL).

LIT were rank outsiders for that quarter-final 12 months ago but thanks largely to 1-10 from Tony Kelly, they upset the odds. That day famously saw Fitzgerald's side emerge from the bushes and on to the pitch just minutes before throw-in after getting changed away from the UL venue.

To add to the intrigue of this derby, former Hurler of the Year Kelly has switched sides this time around but after missing out for Clare through injury last weekend, his participation is in doubt.

Despite losing Kelly, Fitzgerald still has plenty of talent at his disposal and LIT will look to his Banner team-mates Peter Duggan, David Reidy and Jamie Shanahan for inspiration.

UL go into the weekend as short-priced favourites to win the competition outright, though they also have doubts surrounding the availability of the injured David McInerney.

There's still plenty of talent available to Lohan, including the likes of Jason Forde (Tipperary) and Shane Bennett (Waterford), and they showed that they are gutsy when overturning a four-point half-time deficit in their quarter-final win over Nicky English's UCD side.

Small margins will decide this one and the appetite to avenge the defeat of a year ago could tip the balance and see Lohan's UL advance to tomorrow night's final in the Gaelic Grounds.

Odds: UL 1/3 LIT 11/4 Draw 10/1

Verdict: UL

Irish Independent

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