Cork U20 hurling team is backboned by trio from Na Piarsaigh

Cork U20 hurling team is backboned by trio from Na Piarsaigh
Evan Sheehan hit a stunning goal in the 2017 minor All-Ireland final. Picture: Eóin Noonan/Sportsfile

THREE Na Piarsaigh players have been named on the Cork starting 15 for tomorrow night’s Munster championship U20 opener against Limerick at Páirc Uí Rinn, 7.30pm.

All of them feature in the Cork attack with Craig Hanafin at centre-forward, Daire Connery alongside him at left half-forward and Evan Sheehan at 15.

Craig Hanifin. Picture: Eoin Noonan/Sportsfile
Craig Hanifin. Picture: Eoin Noonan/Sportsfile

Cork senior player Robert Downey is named at left half-back while panelist Ger Millerick is named on the subs bench.

He would have been an automatic starter but an ongoing injury concern rules that out.

Ballinhassig’s Ger Collins is the only starting member of last season’s U21 team that lost the All-Ireland final to Tipperary to feature while Brian Turnbull, who was introduced as a sub in that game, is pencilled in at right corner-forward.

Turnbull suffered a cruciate injury two years ago after the core of this group of hurlers made the All-Ireland final, where they fell short to Galway, but the Douglas native has been moving well in recent months.

There are two Midleton players on the team, Sean O’Leary-Hayes is at centre-back while Tommy O’Connell is at midfield alongside Brian Roche from Bride Rovers.

Roche’s twin brother Eoin is named at left corner-back.

The team is captained by James Keating from Kildorrery who mans the full-back berth.

Glen Rovers’ Simon Kennefick gets the left half-forward slot while promising Watergrasshill player Shane O’Regan is at No 14.

There is a strong bench too with the likes of Courcey Rovers forward Sean Twomey, Padraig Power and Declan Hanlon from Blarney and Liam O’Shea (Lisgoold).

The winners will play Clare next week, and Cork will be at home again should they win tomorrow.

Tipp and Waterford are on the other side of the draw. Like the U21 grade last year the provincial finalists will be paired off in the All-Ireland semi-finals.

CORK (v Limerick): G Collins (Ballinhassig); C O’Callaghan (Dromtariffe), J Keating (Kildorrery), E Roche (Bride Rovers); R Walsh (Kanturk), S O’Leary-Hayes (Midleton), R Downey (Glen Rovers); T O’Connell (Midleton), B Roche (Bride Rovers); S Kennefick (Glen), C Hanifin (Na Piarsaigh), D Connery (do); B Turnbull (Douglas), S O’Regan (Watergrasshill), E Sheehan (Na Piarsaigh).

Subs: I Butler (Kildorrery), G Millerick (Fr O’Neill’s), R Sheehan (Mallow), J Copps (Ballyhea), D Hanlon (Blarney), S Twomey (Courcey Rovers), L O’Shea (Lisgoold), B Murphy (Casstlelyons), P Power (Blarney).#

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