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Limerick see off Cork to reach another Munster hurling final

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Limerick 2-22 Cork 1-17

Limerick will contest their third Munster hurling final in a row after a deserved eight-point semi-final win over Cork at Semple Stadium in Thurles on Saturday evening.

Late first-half goals from Darragh O’Donovan and then Kyle Hayes helped the All-Ireland champions lead by six points, 2-10 to 1-07 at the interval.

Limerick further extended their lead to win by eight to set up a Munster final showdown against either Clare or Tipperary in two weeks’ time.

John Kiely’s men had recorded 10 wides in the opening 35 minutes, compared to Cork’s eight. And then when Cork, Munster champions three years ago, hit back after the restart, Limerick, with the wind to their advantage, pulled away again as the Leesiders began to tire in the final quarter.

The 3,000 spectators allowed through the turnstiles were treated to a competitive championship hurling clash in an overcast but warm Thurles as Cork had a slight breeze to their advantage in the opening half.

Aaron Gillane opened the scoring for Limerick in the second minute after Seamus Flanagan won a free out wide. A minute later, Limerick were two points to the good as Peter Casey – put through by Cian Lynch – found space to slot over from 30 yards.

Richie English returned to the Limerick line-up at full back, making his first championship appearance since his side’s All-Ireland semi-final defeat to Kilkenny in 2019.

The Doon clubman missed the entire 2020 All-Ireland campaign after suffering a cruciate ligament injury in a league match against Galway at the Gaelic Grounds in February of last year. He was the only constant in John Kiely’s side in the league games as the Treaty men used 35 different players over their five group games.

Current All-Star Dan Morrissey dropped to the bench for John Kiely’s star studded side.

Cork had the game’s opening goal in the 16th minute. A superb run forward by Cork defender Niall O’Leary stretched the Limerick defence before Shane Kingston found the far corner of Nicky Quaid’s goal from a tight angle.

With the momentum now in Cork’s favour, an excellent over the shoulder Jack O’Connor point from a tight angle out wide put the Leesiders two points ahead at the first water break – 1-3 to 0-4.

Limerick were temporarily reduced to 14 men in the 26th minute. Casey was alleged to have brought down Horgan inside the ‘D’ and was handed a black card – Quaid saved Horgan’s resulting penalty.

On the half hour mark, both sides were level for the first time thanks to two well-taken Lynch points. By the 33rd minute the sides were level for the second as Gillane slotted over his fifth free to make 1-6 to 0-9.

The game’s two decisive goals came in quick succession in injury time as O’Donovan and Hayes both raised the green flag in the 36th and 38th minutes respectively.

Boosted by his first half injury time goal, O’Donovan grabbed Limerick’s first point after the interval.

Sean Finn denied Cork their second goal with 10 minutes gone in the second half – the Bruff man’s flicked block kept Limerick’s seven-point advantage.

Scores from Casey and Byrnes extended Limerick’s lead after the restart but Cork never gave up and Horgan added to his free tally to keep the Rebels within scoring distance.

Late points from Casey and substitute David Reidy put the nail in the Cork coffin with the Drom-Athlacca man getting the final say to put eight points between the two sides.

LIMERICK: Nickie Quaid; Sean Finn, Richie English, Barry Nash; Diarmaid Byrnes (0-2, one free), Declan Hannon (capt.), Kyle Hayes (1-0); William O’Donoghue (0-1), Darragh O’Donovan (1-0); Gearoid Hegarty (0-2), Cian Lynch (0-3), Tom Morrissey; A Gillane (0-06, six frees), Seamus Flanagan (0-2), Peter Casey (0-3)

Subs: Conor Boylan for Tom Morrissey (46 mins), Dan Morrissey for Nash (56), Graeme Mulcahy (0-1) for Flanagan (57), David Reidy (0-2, one free) for Hegarty (65), Pat Ryan for Gillane (66)

CORK: Patrick Collins; Niall O’Leary, Damien Cahalane, Sean O’Donoghue; Tim O’Mahony (0-1), Mark Coleman, Eoin Cadogan; Darragh Fitzgibbon (0-3), Ger Millerick; Conor Cahalane, Seamus Harnedy (0-1), Robbie O’Flynn (0-1); Shane Kingston (1-1), Patrick Horgan (capt.) (0-5, five frees), Jack O’Connor (0-3)

Subs: Shane Barrett (0-2) for Conor Cahalane (45 mins), Luke Meade for Harnedy (50), Sean O’Leary Hayes for Niall O’Leary (51), Alan Cadogan for O’Flynn (55), Alan Connolly for Kingston (69)

Referee: Paud O’Dwyer (Carlow)

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Hines invests in industrial portfolio in Northern Italy

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Hines has reached a binding agreement for an off-market investment to acquire 20 logistics assets located between Emilia Romagna and Lombardy through the Italian fund HEVF II Italy managed by Prelios SGR on behalf of the Hines European Value Fund 2 (HEVF 2). The transaction involves the acquisition of the real estate portfolio from four different selling companies and the simultaneous 15-year lease of the same portfolio to Snatt Logistica Group, a leader in the third-party logistics (3PL) sector focusing exclusively on the fashion industry. The portfolio of 20 logistics assets provides a total of 200,000m² of logistics space around Milan, Parma, Reggio Emilia, and Bologna. They are strategic, well-established logistic centres that enjoy effective, rapid connections with Italy’s main cities and the rest of Europe.

 

“We are pleased to start 2022 with an important investment in the logistics sector that consolidates our presence in the main intersections in Northern Italy. At Hines, we believe in the potential of the logistics sector in Italy and have set an investment target of around €1bn in 2022,” commented Mario Abbadessa, senior managing director & country head of Hines Italy. “We are proud to collaborate with Snatt Logistica Group, which is an international 3PL logistics leader in the luxury fashion industry, and we are certain that we will be able to develop a shared path for growth, guided by common values, including ESG, which is key to our DNA.”

 

Paul White, senior managing director and fund manager for HEVF 2 at Hines, said: “This is an attractive portfolio of assets with a strong, innovative tenant at the forefront of Italy’s fast-growing third-party logistics sector for the fashion industry. We believe that e-commerce will continue to drive long-term demand for high-quality logistics facilities in Italy’s northern cities, pushing the value of these investments forwards, while there is also a significant opportunity to enhance the sustainability performance of existing assets here. This is aligned with our ESG objectives as recognised by GRESB, with HEVF 2 achieving the award of Overall Global Sector Leader in the Diversified Office/Retail category for sustainability performance in 2021.”

 

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Latest Coveney gaffe shows new knack of ‘making small problems big’

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“Don’t mind your press releases,” a Fine Gael source was told by a more experienced hand on their first day in Leinster House; “If you want something out there, just say it in the PP [parliamentary party meeting].”

It’s a truism of Irish politics that these meetings – especially those of the two larger Government parties – leak like the proverbial sieve. This got worse during Covid, when virtual meetings meant members were unencumbered by the need to even appear interested, and journalists were freely briefed in real time. The content of the meeting, coupled with the observations of parliamentarians – arch, knowing, and unfiltered – populated twitter streams and news copy.

So, when Simon Coveney’s remarks about his surprise at the meeting between the Russian ambassador to Ireland and the head of the defence forces were promptly headline news, it can’t have been too much of a shock. “He knows he’s speaking at the leakiest meeting in Leinster House,” observed a source present.

Still, some in the room thought when Michael Creed raised the issue, Coveney would just “warble on like you normally do”. Instead, after a gap of several minutes while other questions were fielded, the Minister for Defence bit down. He said he was “surprised to put it mildly”, several sources present said, and questioned the judgement of it.

Afterwards, sources close to Coveney quickly asserted the Minister meant the tweet from the Russians, and the accompanying picture, were the issue, not the meeting. But multiple sources at the parliamentary party interpreted it as referring to the meeting, and what’s more, as a direct rebuke to the chief of staff. “The tone I got was he was f***ing livid,” said one source.

Either way, the remark was leaked, it was controversial, and early the next morning, Coveney was mending fences in the Dáil, expressing confidence in Clancy and contrition for having brought him into the line of political fire.

A kind interpretation, offered by some at the meeting, is that he feels honour-bound to respond fully to questions from parliamentary colleagues. There is likely truth to that. But equally, many believe he would have known his comments would have been controversial, open to interpretation as a rebuke to the head of the Defence Forces, and that it was meant as a shot across the bows.

Others postulate that – perhaps more worryingly – he didn’t detect the political risk inherent in the remarks, which the Opposition would say had undermined the Chief of Staff . “Simon should have known this was going to result in public comment,” said another person there.

That, in truth is the bigger concern – that Coveney’s bad run of form is down to a blunted political dexterity. “You’d know by the way he said it he wasn’t trying to cause controversy,” one colleague said – adding that it was, however, evidence of Coveney’s new knack of “making small problems into big ones”.

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Greenman OPEN acquires German retail portfolio for €90m

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Greenman OPEN has acquired three retail parks for a combined value of circa €90m. The newly purchased portfolio includes a retail centre in Sonneberg, Rastal Centre in Hohr-Grenzhausen, and a new supermarket located in Markneukirchen.

 

The retail centre in Sonneberg comprises 33,145m² of lettable space and is one of the largest assets in the fund portfolio. It is fully occupied and anchored by EDEKA Marktkauf. Deriving 84% of its income from “essential” retailers, of which 60% is from grocery retailers, the centre will generate consistent income over its long nine-year WARLT.

 

The new turnkey Rastal Centre in Hohr-Grenzhausen offers 13,793m²,  and is anchored by Lidl and Aldi. The high weighted average remaining lease term (WARLT) of the centre, 12.5 years, will ensure income generation for the fund for the long term.

 

The brand-new supermarket in Markneukirchen is also let to EDEKA on a new 15-year lease term and forms part of the developer framework agreement signed with Schroder.

 

In line with OPEN’s ESG strategy to be carbon neutral by 2040, all newly acquired centres fit into the fund’s ESG framework. In Sonneberg, the centre operates at a reduced energy consumption rate compared to the average for a property of its size and usage. Simultaneously, it is compatible with OPEN’s plans to implement PV solar panels for renewable energy generation. The brand-new development in Hohr-Grenzhausen will be built to a minimum silver DGNB standard.

 

Commenting on OPEN’s acquisitions and growth milestone, James McEvoy, Head of Acquisitions for Greenman, said: “Reaching €1bn of AUM is a significant milestone for the OPEN fund and underlines our sector expertise. As we grow further, we’re paying particular attention to ensuring that all OPEN’s assets are fit for the future shape of the grocery retail sector, incorporating ESG criteria, new technology and innovation to improve how physical assets support the grocery retail model of the future. Having surpassed our €1bn AUM target in 2021, we will continue to use our market-leading expertise in the German food retail sector to source the best opportunities for investors. We have a locked-in pipeline of assets in place to grow the fund further this year and are targeting to achieve €3bn AUM by 2027.”

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