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Limerick Had 'Bit Of Craic' About Dressing Room Celebration Photo

5 June 2022; Limerick players, from left, Nickie Quaid, Sean Finn, Mike Casey, Barry Nash and Diarmaid Byrnes after the Munster GAA Hurling Senior Championship Final match between Limerick and Clare at Semple Stadium in Thurles, Tipperary. Photo by Ray McManus/Sportsfile

By PJ Browne

In his most sarcastic tone, Gearóid Hegarty lets it be known what Limerick teammates Nickie Quaid, Mike Casey, Seán Finn, Barry Nash and Diarmaid Byrnes thought about the dressing room photo which zipped around social media following the Munster final victory over Clare.

"We had a bit of craic on the bus on the way home alright after the Munster final," Hegarty said at the launch of Bord Gáis Energy’s ‘State of Play’ campaign.

"The boys were 'devastated' that it went up on social media; Mike (Casey) and Seán (Finn), they were inconsolable that it went up on social media.

16 June 2022; Pictured is Bord Gáis Energy ambassador and Limerick hurler Gearóid Hegarty at the launch of Bord Gáis Energy's 'State of Play' campaign to promote allyship and inclusion in team sports. Photo by Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Limerick are one of the best conditioned teams in Gaelic games. Hegarty says there is no secret to the shape they're in. It's simply down to hard work over a long period.

"That comes back to all the hard work that we do in the gym," said Hegarty.

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"That is the shape [we're in], and all the hard work we've done over the last number of years, to get into the position that we're in.

"If you look at our panel, since about 2017 the vast majority of us that have been on the panel.

"There's maybe six years of hard work gone in to get us to the position we're in at the moment. Some lads are there longer, some lads have joined us in the meantime but the core group are there five and six years at this stage.

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"When you come back at the start of the year, you think that you're starting from zero again, but you're not. You are unfit, and need to get fit again, but things come back quickly because you have such a good foundation built up over the years.

5 June 2022; Kyle Hayes of Limerick is tackled by Shane O'Donnell of Clare during the Munster GAA Hurling Senior Championship Final match between Limerick and Clare at FBD Semple Stadium in Thurles, Tipperary. Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile

"It's a lot of hard work over the years. I know it's the boring answer but I do genuinely think that's why we're in the shape that we're in.

"Everyone talks about the size of some of our lads. As much as the photo that went up on social media [got attention], it's not about looking good, it's about being able to take the hits out on the field.

"That's what a lot of people don't realise, those that just go out to watch the games on a casual manner. The Munster final, some of the hits going in were unreal. It was as intense a game as I've ever played, outside of Croke Park anyway.

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"You do need to be at a high strength and conditioning level to be on an inter-county panel."

As part of the campaign, Bord Gáis Energy, sponsor of the GAA All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship, has created 32 limited edition GAA County Pride t-shirts where county pride meets pride in supporting the LGBTQI+ community. The t-shirts are on sale from today at hairybaby.com for €20 and all proceeds will go to Focus Ireland to support young members of the LGBTQI+ community who are experiencing homelessness.

See Also: Three Weeks Before Munster Hurling Final Were 'Difficult' For Hegarty

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