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Diarmaid Byrnes denies player arrest hampered Limerick’s Munster preparations

It has been an interesting few weeks for Limerick’s hurlers.

On Sunday week, Limerick take their their place in the Munster Hurling final, where they will face local rivals Clare at Semple Stadium in Thurles.

Securing their place in the final with a hard-fought win against Tipperary, Limerick became embroiled in a post-match controversy when a member of their playing panel was arrested for allegedly assaulting a Tipperary hurler.

But speaking after being crowned as the PwC GAA/GPA Hurler of the Month for April, Diarmaid Byrnes has denied that the incident effected he, or his teammates ahead of the end of their Munster Championship campaign.

“We haven’t really reflected on it as a group..”

“No, I don’t think so to be honest,” Byrnes explained when asked if the incident impacted their preparations for the games. “We haven’t really reflected on it as a group.

“It’s been spoken about, digested, and we moved on. We put in a solid performance in Ennis the last day, and there are a lot of things to work on to take into Sunday week.

“We’ll enjoy the week and a bit now. Enjoy the moments, calling out home, the conversations, the atmosphere building in the city and training as a group. We’ll drive on together.”

He then added: “Training has been truly enjoyable. It has been intense over the last week or so, and we have another week of it to go. It was what it was, and we won’t dwell on it.

“We’ll just drive on as a group together.”

“The GAA are trying something, and if they didn’t try it, they would be criticised, and if they did, they would be..”

During that incident, issues also began to arise surrounding the split-season of the GAA Championship, with RTE pundits expressing their concern at what was unfolding around the country.

Despite those concerns raised, Byrnes defended the GAA to an extent, praising them for taking a jump into the unknown.

“The GAA are trying something, and if they didn’t try it, they would be criticised, and if they did, they would be [criticised],” he explained. “There are no real winners in it.

Limerick v Tipperary TV

“But it is a massive season, and then you talk about player welfare when you get into this big bubble that I’m not going to get into.

“It is about trying to be as fair to the players, and the club, and then have a competitive and fair Championship. They are trying it, and fair play to them.

“We’ll see how it goes and how it pans out. We’re only halfway though it at the moment.”

Next weekend, Limerick take on Clare in Munster final, with their place in an All-Ireland quarter final already assured. With a win, they would take their place in an All-Ireland semi-final.

Throw-in at Semple Stadium in the Munster decider is at 4pm, on June 5th. The game is expected to be a sell-out.

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