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Jarlath Burns Clarifies Declan Hannon's '53 Man' Limerick Backroom Comment

Jarlath Burns Clarifies Declan Hannon's '53 Man' Limerick Backroom Comment
Eoin Harrington
By Eoin Harrington Updated
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Limerick captain Declan Hannon climbed the steps in Semple Stadium on Sunday afternoon to lift the Munster championship trophy for the sixth year in a row.

The Treaty County fought hard in Sunday's final against neighbours Clare but, ultimately, they defeated their rivals by six points in ruthless fashion.


With a fifth successive All-Ireland crown on the cards, the Limerick era of dominance continues apace, with manager John Kiely having built a remarkable squad over the past few years.

On RTÉ Sport post-match, Cork legend Dónal Óg Cusack highlighted the impressive line of youth talent arriving into the Limerick squad to supplement the excellent calibre of player they already boast.

However, as captain Hannon accepted the Mick Mackey Cup on Sunday, one element of his acceptance speech seemed even more ominous to viewers.

READ HERE: Dónal Óg Thinks 'Frightening' Trait Of Limerick Squad Shows Dominance Here To Stay

READ HERE: Shocking New York Miss The Turning Point In Gutting Defeat To Laois

Declan Hannon's backroom staff comment raises eyebrows

As Declan Hannon ran through his thank yous at Semple Stadium, one of the very first stood out to hurling fans.



The Limerick captain thanked the staff associated with the Limerick squad, saying:

First of all, I want to thank the 36 [strong] panel of Limerick players. They represent the county so well, day-in-day-out. I'm very, very proud of ye and the work you put in, the humbleness. Ye are amazing. Keep it going for the next six weeks.

We've a backroom team of 53 people. I'm not gonna thank them all, but I want to thank in particular John Kiely and Paul Kinnerk for everything they do for us.

The remarkable number of people involved in Limerick's backroom team took hurling fans and pundits alike by surprise, and to many it summed up the astonishing scale of the county's hurling operation.

53 is an astonishing number of people to be involved in the setup for an amateur sport, and it is no surprise that fans were drawn to that particular element of Declan Hannon's speech.

However, speaking on Morning Ireland on Monday morning, GAA president Jarlath Burns issued a clarification on the revelation. He said that Hannon was including the extended panel (37) and the Limerick backroom team (16) in that figure.


"I did clarify that with Paul Foley the Ard Comhairle rep from Limerick because I knew he didn't mean that," he said.

"I can tell you if you're a captain up there... I'm often standing beside them and I know how nervous they can be. There aren't 53. I can reassure people around the country if you are trying to get up to that level it's not... I think it's 37 on the panel and 16 on the backroom, so he looked at the whole family all as one, 53 people."

A 16 person backroom team is big compared to GAA teams 25 years ago, but definitely the norm in 2024.


SEE ALSO: Gearoid Hegarty Heaps Praise On Young Limerick Star After Munster Win



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