Kilkenny and Carlow are both in National Hurling League action this weekend.
In Division 1, Group B, Kilkenny, who is on two points so far, entertain neighbours Laois.
Laois is hoping for a quick response after losing to Waterford by 33 points last weekend, Kilkenny beat them by 1-29 to 0-22 in last year’s League.
That game is at 2 pm on Sunday in Nowlan Park and we have full commentary of the game on-air and online.
Carlow is on two points so far in Division 2A, and they welcome Kerry to Netwatch Cullen Park on Sunday at 12.30 pm.
Carlow beat Kerry by 3-25 to 0-14 in last year’s league, Kerry also has two points in their campaign so far.
The battle for promotion from 2A was always likely to be intense and so it’s proving.
Down are the only team on full points after two rounds while Kildare is the only team without a point. Carlow, Kerry, Meath, and Westmeath are all on two points.
We have live commentary of Carlow V Kerry on Sunday on-air and online.
PRESSURE ON LIMERICK IN ALL-IRELAND FINAL REPEAT
Limerick had plenty in hand when beating Cork in last year’s All-Ireland final – winning by 16 points – but there’s a different mood in both counties in the early stages of the 2022 campaign.
Limerick have lost their opening two Allianz League games, whereas Cork have won their two quite easily.
The contrast adds to the appeal of Sunday’s clash, which is certain to attract a big crowd to the TUS Gaelic Grounds.
ALLIANZ HURLING LEAGUE DIVISION 1 GROUP A: FOUR-POINT GAP BETWEEN TOP AND BOTTOM THREE
Three (Cork, Galway, Wexford on four points), three (Clare, Offaly, Limerick) on zero points – that’s how the table looks after two rounds. It’s a serious situation for the bottom trio as a further defeat would all but leave them out of contention for a place in the semi-finals.
The clash of Limerick and Cork is the headline act, with the All-Ireland champions facing a real test of character after losing to Wexford and Galway by three and six points respectively.
Limerick scored only one goal across both games but, interestingly, only conceded one. They beat Cork by 0-33 to 2-19 in last year’s League before being even more dominant in the All-Ireland final (3-32 to 1-22).
Henry Shefflin’s Galway and Wexford, who were in different groups in recent years, will be having their first League meeting since 2019 when they clash in Pearse Stadium.
Galway beat Wexford by 3-21 to 3-11 in the 2019 League quarter-final.
Something has to give for Henry Shefflin or Darragh Egan when Galway meets Wexford next Sunday.
Both have made excellent starts to their managerial reigns in their adopted counties, winning the first two games, so who will keep the run going?
Galway is seeking to win their opening three League games for the first time since 2018. Wexford last achieved it in 2017.
Clare and Michael Fennelly’s Offaly meet for the first time in the League since 2015 when the Banner won a 1B contest (2-21 to 0-15).
ALLIANZ HURLING LEAGUE DIVISION 1 GROUP B: TIPP CHASING THIRD SUCCESSIVE WIN
Only Tipperary are on full points after two rounds while Laois and Antrim have yet to pick up a point. Waterford and Dublin (three each) and Kilkenny (two) complete the group.
Tipperary and Dublin begin the Round 3 action in Thurles on Saturday. They last met in the League in 2019 when Dublin won a quarter-final tie by 1-21 to 0-23.
Antrim and Waterford renew League rivalry after seven years, with the Deise having won the last clash by 22 points in 2015.
Laois will be hoping for a quick response after losing to Waterford by 33 points last weekend, but face a daunting task ‘away’ to Kilkenny, who beat them by 1-29 to 0-22 in last year’s League.
ALLIANZ HURLING LEAGUE DIVISION 2A: TOP v BOTTOM CLASH IN BALLYCRAN
Down has made the best start of all, beating Carlow and Meath. They are two points ahead of Carlow, Kerry, Meath, and Westmeath, with Kildare still seeking their first point.
It will be a tough ask for them away to Down, who beat them by two points in their last League meeting (2B) in 2020.
The last League meeting between Meath and Westmeath was in 2019 when the maroon-and-white outfit won by 1-20 to 0-20.
ALLIANZ HURLING LEAGUE DIVISION 2B: ULSTER PAIR LEAD PROMOTION RACE
Derry and Donegal, both on four points, lead the way, followed by London on two points, Mayo and Wicklow one each. Sligo, who came up from 3A this year, have still to pick up a point. They host London next weekend.
Derry hosts Roscommon, whom they beat by 1-26 to 0-24 last year.
Wicklow beat Donegal by four points in their last League clash in 2019.
ALLIANZ HURLING LEAGUE DIVISION 3A: TOP TWO CLASH IN OMAGH
Armagh (4pts) and Tyrone (3pts) meet in Omagh while third-placed Roscommon (3pts, but with an inferior scoring difference to Tyrone, host Warwickshire, who have lost their two opening games.
Roscommon beat Warwickshire by 12 points in their last League meeting in 2020. Monaghan beat Louth by eight points last year.