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Mark Schutte, Dublin, in action against Wayne McNamara, Limerick

Mark Schutte, Dublin, in action against Wayne McNamara, Limerick

SPORTSFILE

Mark Schutte, Dublin, in action against Wayne McNamara, Limerick

It's just a week ago that Dublin were seriously concerned about succumbing to back-to-back relegation play-offs.

But two big wins have transformed their campaign and nobody has done more in those two games than young forward, Mark Schutte.

The Cuala clubman shot 1-5 at Croke Park last night to see off Limerick and secure a semi-final clash with Cork or Wexford on April 19.

The man of the match was unable to give his speech afterwards as he was receiving stitches for a minor wound.

Schutte was equally superb at nearby Parnell Park last weekend, when he scored five points in Dublin's win over Galway.

Free-taker David Treacy also shot 0-9 as the 2011 champions moved within touching distance of another league decider.

Limerick were rocked by the early loss of captain Donal O'Grady, who limped off with a leg injury. They also lost the vastly-experienced Seamus Hickey to a 34th-minute injury.

Liam Rushe was moved out of full-forward for the first time this season, and started at centre-forward with Schutte on the edge of the square, where he excelled.

His third point moved Dublin into a double-scores 0-10 to 0-5 lead after 24 minutes. Shane Dowling kept Limerick in touch with five frees in the half, but three Dublin points in a row at one stage before the break left them comfortably ahead by 0-14 to 0-8.

They effectively sealed victory after the restart when they shot 1-1 inside three minutes. David O'Callaghan, who'd earlier won a penalty that Treacy pointed from, firstly split the posts.

And, in the 37th minute, Schutte escaped Richie McCarthy with a speedy run and low shot that ended up in the bottom left corner of Limerick's net.

There was a brief rally from the Shannonsiders midway through the half when they reduced the gap to six points, but Dublin's response was emphatic. They hit six points on the spin themselves to ensure Limerick wouldn't be let off the hook.

Scorers - Dublin: D Treacy 0-9 (7f, 1pen), M Schutte 1-5, J McCaffrey, D O'Callaghan, D Sutcliffe, N McMorrow 0-2 each; C Crummey, C Boland, L Rushe 0-1 each. Limerick: S Dowling 0-8 (7f, 1 '65), G Mulcahy 0-4, C Lynch, J Ryan, P O'Brien, T Morrissey 0-1 each.

Dublin: G Maguire; C O'Callaghan, P Kelly, P Schutte; S Durkin, C Crummey, C Keaney; J McCaffrey, N McMorrow; R O'Dwyer, L Rushe, D Sutcliffe; D O'Callaghan, M Schutte, D Treacy. Subs: P Ryan for O'Callaghan (45), C Cronin for McCaffrey (56), C Boland for M Schutte (67), D Plunkett for O'Dwyer (67), C McBride for Sutcliffe (71).

Limerick: N Quaid; S Walsh, R McCarthy, S Hickey; P O'Brien, W McNamara, D Morrissey; P Browne, J Ryan; D Breen, D Hannon, D O'Grady; G Mulcahy, S Dowling, S Tobin. Subs: C Lynch for O'Grady (11), S O'Brien for Hickey (34), D Reidy for Tobin (54), C King for Ryan (65), T Morrissey for Mulcahy (65).

Referee: D Kirwan (Cork).

Sunday Indo Sport