Clare and Tipperary both made winning starts to the newly formatted Munster MFC tonight when comfortably beating Limerick and Waterford, respectively.
This year's competition sees a round-robin series between the four perceived weaker teams, with the top two progressing to a Phase 1 final, the winner of which will face Kerry and Cork in a second round-robin series, with the top two advancing to the final proper.
Clare, who reached last year's decider after two games but will play a minimum of six if they're to do so again in 2019, came away from Newcastlewest with maximum points, thanks to an easy 3-15 to 0-10 win.
The home team started the contest promisingly and had led by 0-5 to 0-2 after the opening quarter.
Dermot Coughlan's charges then made their move with six unanswered scores including a goal from Jamie Stack to hold a 1-7 to 0-6 advantage at the break.
Diarmuid Fahy and substitute Eoin Talty supplied further goals for the Banner County in the second period.
Tipperary's Kyle Shelly against Limerick last year. ©INPHO/Oisin Keniry.
At Sean Treacy Park, Waterford proved no match for Tipperary who finished with eighteen points (4-13 to 0-7) to spare over the visitors.
Three first-half goals from Kyle Shelly, Paddy Creedon and Tom Tobin laid the foundations for the runaway victory.
They struck for their first major in the 8th minute and added two more in quick succession to take a 3-8 to 0-5 lead into half-time.
Skipper Shelly bagged Tipp's fourth goal with time nearly up to bring his tally to 2-8.
The second round of action takes place in a week's time (Wednesday, 17 April) when Clare host Tipperary at Cusack Park and Waterford welcome Limerick to Fraher Field in round 2 (both throw-in at 6.45pm).
Clare - O O'Loughlin; T Lillis (0-2), M Garry, C McMahon; C McGroary (0-1), A Killeen, M Reidy; E Rouine, B Rouine; P Doherty, D Fahy (1-0), D Nagle (0-1); C Hassett, S Meehan (0-6, 4f), J Stack (1-3, 0-2f). Subs: E Talty (1-2) for P Doherty, F Kelleher for M Reidy, S Casey for E Rouine, T Meenahan for C Hassett, E Walshe for J Stack.
Limerick - S O’Connell; D Geraghty, P Dolphin, F Corcoran; E McGrath, E Riordan (0-3, 2f), T Marsden; M Southgate (0-2), D O’Keeffe; M Donnellan, S O’Donoghue (0-4, 1f), P O’Dwyer; C Galvin, S Hanrahan (0-1f), Ruadhan O’Connor. Subs: J Corkery for Ruadhan O'Connor, J Quinlivan for P O'Dwyer, R McBrearty for T Marsden, Rory O'Connor for S Hanrahan, S Kilbridge for E McGrath, J Killian for M Donnellan.
Referee - B Griffin.
Tipperary - J Griffin; C McDonagh, T Condon, E Butler; J Armstrong (0-2), D Hickey, C Shanahan; P Creedon (1-1), T Tobin (1-0); L Seacy (0-1), B Comerford (0-1), D King; L McCormack, K Shelly (2-8, 0-6f), E McCarthy. Subs: L King for D King, M O’Connor for E McCarthy, C Cadell for L McCormack, T Bourke for C McDonagh, F Delaney for L Seacy, J Buckley for T Tobin.
Waterford - T Murray; B O’Brien, S Boyce, M Mullaney; M Dalton, C Foley, K Sloan; C Scanlon, DJ Melia; T Dalton, S Walsh (0-1), P Skehan; A Behan (0-2), A Ryan (0-2, 1f), T O'Connell (0-2f). Subs: J Hahessy for K Sloan, C Rooney for P Skehan, K Taylor for S Walsh, E Cullen for A Behan, P Hynes for T Dalton, C O Dalaigh for M Dalton.
Referee - J Ryan.Tweet