Cork have been on the road now for four years under Jimmy Barry Murphy and have a fairly seasoned team, but it is stand and deliver time for them now.
It's 2007 since Waterford last won the league title. Two Munster successes and an All-Ireland final appearance have followed since and with much talk about the prospect for the U-21s this year, Déise supporters have reasons to be optimistic.
Cork and Waterford will believe that they can have a say in the All-Ireland race this year, but before that they look set to serve up an intriguing appetiser to the many absorbing contests that are sure to lie ahead.
It was back in 1998 when the two sides last met in the league final, it was the Rebels who emerged victorious on a 2-14 to 0-13 scoreline - their last win in the competition.
It was a maiden piece of silverware for Jimmy Barry-Murphy in his first coming as Cork boss. All-Ireland and Munster success followed a year later. For Waterford, their league final appearance in that early summer of ’98 was the start of a real revival for the county in terms of mixing it with the big boys and winning trophies.