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Final call

Thursday, 10th July, 2014 1:00am

Famous days of Limerick v Cork in Pairc Ui Chaoimh in Munster finals are few and far between.

In fact, there has only been four, the last of which was in 1992. Before there was one in 1976 in the brand new Pairc Ui Chaoimh, one in 1920 in Pairc Ui Chaoimh's predecessor, the Cork Athletic Grounds, and one in 1893 in Charleville. Cork won all four, which bodes well for this Sunday's final as we approach the last-ever championship match to be played in the famous bowls of the concrete stadium that has served up many great memories, sporting or otherwise, since it was built in 1976.

This year's final, and the winning of it, is hugely important for both Cork and Limerick but for very different reasons. Cork, the self-proclaimed kingpins of Munster hurling, have not won a title at this level since 2006, the longest gap since the 10-year period between their 1956 and 66 wins. It also gives Cork the chance to avenge last year's final, which Limerick won 0-15 to 0-24 in the Gaelic Grounds, a match tinged with controversy after Cork's Patrick Horgan was sent off for a straight red card offence that was later revoked. Horgan, arguably Cork's most consistent performer in recent times, has already scored 2-33 from three games in this year's championship and is the current top scorer with a lead of a whopping 2-17 over nearest challenger, Pauric Mahony of Waterford.

Although Horgan amassed this in three games, compared to one or two for other counties, it's still an incredible tally with an average score of 0-13 per game.

Until last year, Limerick had won only one of their previous 17 Munster Senior Hurling Championship matches, a victory over Tipperary in the 2007 Munster Semi-Final second replay and this Sunday presents the chance to break another record, by winning their first ever Munster final against Cork - in Cork.

The senior final will throw-in at 4pm and it's preceded by the minor meeting of Limerick and Waterford, which is also a repeat of last year's final. Limerick won the 2013 final in a replay although Waterford later gained revenge for this by winning the All-Ireland title for the first time at that level since 1948.

10 famous moments down the Pairc:1. 1985 Munster Hurling Final; Cork 4-17, Tipperary 4-11. Ger Cunningham lifted the cup on this occasion in front of almost 50,000 fans in a match that Tipperary had expected to win with a rather physical approach. Goals from John Fenton, Jimmy Barry Murphy, Tomas Mulcahy and Denis Walsh meant that the title would stay in Cork however, for the third year in-a-row.2. 1992 Munster Hurling Final; Cork 1-22, Limerick 3-11. The most recent Munster final in Cork between this pair, this match is fondly remembered for the infamous Tomas Mulcahy '20-step goal'. Mulcahy, who had lost his hurley, threw the ball up in the air before taking about 20 steps and kicking the ball to the net before Cork went on to win the match.3. 1996 Munster Senior Hurling Championship Quarter-Final; Cork 1-8, Limerick 3-18. Not a good day at the office for Cork, this match is surprisingly not remembered for the bad result, but rather the debut of two rather special players. Seán Óg Ó hAilpín and Joe Deane made their first appearance for Cork that day and thankfully more than made up for the result in years to come in the Cork jersey.4. 2001 Munster Senior Hurling Championship Quarter-Final; Cork 1-15, Limerick 1-16.Another bad day down the Pairc for Cork fans, this was a particularly sore one as in rainy conditions, when Diarmuid O'Sullivan scored one of the best points that Pairc Ui Chaoimh will ever see, Limerick ground  out a tough victory to send Cork packing. The 28 year old Brian Corcoran later dropped a bombshell and retired - only to make a sensational return in 2004.5. 1977 County Hurling Final; St Finbarrs 1-17, Glen Rovers 1-5.A record attendance of 34,151 watched as the 'Barrs trounced their Northside rivals by 12 points. The Glen were reigning All-Ireland Club Champions at the time but a younger and fresher 'Barrs team took the title in dramatic fashion.6. 1994 County Football Final; Castlehaven 0-12, O'Donovan Rossa 0-10A massive crowd from West Cork travelled to Pairc Ui Chaoimh to see the showdown between neighbours and bitter rivals Castlehaven and O'Donovan Rossa. In what is considered to be one of the greatest county finals of all time, it was to be Castlehaven's day, with Niall Cahalane lifting the cup for the second time in the club's history.7. Siamsa Cois Lee 1978-1986The series of open air concerts in Pairc Ui Chaoimh stretched from the late Seventies to the mid-Eighties and saw the likes of Kris Kristofferson, The Wolfe Tones, The Pogues, John Denver and The Dubliners take to the stage in Pairc Ui Chaoimh.8. U2, 8 August 1987, Joshua Tree Tour.Thousands packed in for U2's last leg of their European tour where fans rocked out to songs such as 'Pride' (In The Name Of Love), 'With Or Without You', 'Out Of Control' and 40.   'Sunday, Bloody Sunday' was a particular highlight, with the audience chanting 'wipe your tears away' throughout the song which U2 played for twice its normal length.9. Michael Jackson, 30 and 31 July, 1988.In 1988, Michael Jackson performed at the stadium twice as part of his Bad World Tour, with a combined attendance of 110,000, hailed at the time as 'The Greatest Show on Earth'.  10. Bruce Springsteen, 18 July 2013.The final open-air concert to be played at Pairc Ui Chaoimh before re-development, this concert saw young and old alike delight in the thrill of Bruce and the E-Street band who were on stage for three hours on one of the hottest days last summer.

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