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“Losing to Clare… puts a blemish on our record” — John Kiely

Limerick manager John Kiely gives his thoughts ahead of the Munster final against Clare at the Gaelic Grounds

Limerick manager John Kiely gives his thoughts ahead of the Munster final against Clare at the Gaelic Grounds.

John Kiely wasn’t aware that Limerick are bidding to become the first Munster five-in-a-row champions since Cork in 1986.

The Treaty had been in indifferent form during the provincial campaign but showed signs of their best form during the narrow win over the Rebels.

This Sunday they face Clare at the Gaelic Grounds and will be aiming for revenge for a home loss to the Banner during the round-robin phase.

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“I didn’t even know until you mentioned it, to be honest with you,” says Kiely of the five in a row.

“Listen, it’s five. It’s fantastic to be there.

“In 2013 we hadn’t won a Munster final since 1996, so it means a huge amount to have the opportunity to play in the Munster final.

“For the lads to do that in the last number of years has meant a huge amount to them.

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“We’ve done it all sorts of ways — knockouts, round-robins. It has been nice to do it in all different ways. What’s in the past is in the past.

“Sunday is what we’re focused on. Sunday is what we want.”

As for the recent defeat to Brian Lohan’s men, Kiely was forthright in his views.

“They outworked us in that match by a considerable amount. Hence we were chasing the game in the last 10 minutes.

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“They were quite comfortable winners really in the finish. We got a goal but it was a consolation goal.

“That’s the challenge for us now on Sunday. We’ve got to find a way of working harder than them across the 70-plus minutes, giving ourselves opportunities and taking them.”

“We certainly could have worked an awful lot harder.

“No matter what way we analyse the game, we were well outworked on the day and that simply won’t be good enough on Sunday.”

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