Irony will probably have it that Justin McCarthy’s last stand as Limerick hurling manager could have been in Fraher Field, of all places, last Sunday.
Clubs on Shannonside are expected to finally move a vote of no-confidence in the Corkman at an emergency county board meeting, if he doesn’t pack his bags beforehand.
On the field, the serious head injury suffered by Limerick ’keeper Tadhg Flynn — which was to Waterford’s advantage after a nightmare start — saw an embarrassing 14-minute delay in getting him treated/stretchered off. The GAA really needs to up its game first-aid facilities-wise, while it also begs the question about the supposed safety of helmets and faceguards.
At Páirc Uí Chaoimh Kilkenny’s Willie O’Dwyer came close to being decapitated by John Gardiner and was probably lucky his chin strap had come loose which meant the Corkman’s arm took his helmet off rather than his head. Apart from ruining the spectacle, the headgear rule isn’t workable. (See hungforalamb.com)
As for any hard and fast conclusions about Cork’s credentials, it’s still the best part of six months to the All-Ireland final. But their Munster opener against Tipp could be the game of the summer. And God help Limerick, even under new management, in the semi.