Hi lads, well Shaun your beloved Cork were knocked out on Sunday by Galway as you predicted. Did the game pan out as you expected or did Joe Canning's performance surprise you?
Not at all Pete you will remember I said that the Galway half-back line would clean out the Cork in the air and it was proved in the second half. Galway were just too powerful for a physically slight Rebels outfit. On Canning nothing surprises me with that man just pure class from the Portumna man.
@Shaun Cronin What do you think went wrong in the second half?
The big question now though, is whether Galway can give Tipp or Kilkenny a run for their money in the final? The Cats in September are a much different prospect to the Cats in the provincial championship and you can only imagine how riled up they would be if they were to play Galway again?
As for Cork, overall there was progress and I think once they defeated Waterford in Thurles, everything else was only going to be bonus territory. Plenty of promise and they'll be much stronger next year.
Cork went in at level at half-time because they moved the ball quickly and low into a dangerous full forward line of O'Sullivan, O'Farrell and Horgan but they are not the biggest of men and once Galway got a couple of points ahead in the second half they brought men back into the defence and Cork naively pumped long balls into the full forward line to isolated forwards who couldn't win that type of ball. Cork should have just worked the ball up the field and picked off a few long range scores it would have drawn Galway out.
@AlanSmith Do you think Galway will take anything from their victory over Cork for the final?
@Shaun Cronin I can't see Tipp or Kilkenny making the same mistakes. Do you think Galway will have much of a chance against either team in the final?
@Peter Towe It's hard to say how much they'll get from it. On one hand it was a good battle for them but they'll know that their performance will need to improve again to become champions. Of course it was a big mental hurdle for them to overcome as well.
@AlanSmith I suppose you could say their win over the Cats in the Leinster final was more valuable to them. Presuming Cody's charges are riled up after their defeat, is there anything the Tribesmen can do to counter them, presuming it is Kilkenny in the final....
@Peter Towe Depends on who they play really. From a neutral point of view I'd love to see a final between Tipp and Galway. It would just be an all out shootout but If its Kilkenny it will be trench warfare similar to what we saw in the Leinster final. People are calling for the real Kilkenny but remember just because Galway beat them the last day it doesn't mean Kilkenny will exact revenge next time every defeat carries baggage.
If Tipp are to stop the Cats getting to the final, DJ Carey has pointed out that Tipp's half back line of Padraic Maher and Thomas Stapleton are the dangermen. Your thoughts?
Maher and Stapleton are flying Pete I'm guessing they will be on TJ Reid who should come in after impressing as a sub against Limerick and either Eoin Larkin or Colin Fennelly who will take over the other spot. Its important for Kilkenny that they stop Maher's rampaging run out of defence as not only raises the crowd but his teammates as well.
@Cóilín Duffy Do you think there is a danger that the 'real' Kilkenny won't turn up? Three big games Kilkenny have lost now in the last few years, the All-Ireland final of 2010 to Tipperary, the Allianz Hurling League final of 2011 to Dublin, the Leinster final of 2012 to Galway, but after each of those games they bounced back.
@Peter Towe Then again, do Kilkenny really consider the league and perhaps even the Leinster final as big games? Winning in September is the goal every year and Tipp were pretty special in 2010.
@AlanSmith O don't know about that Alan, Cody doesn't like losing any game, no matter how small. And surely, Kilkenny will know that Tipp will be looking for revenge for last year's defeat in the final.
Tipperary's captain has said that they have improved since last year's All-Ireland final. Do you think it will be enough to hurt Kilkenny?
@Peter Towe I'm not suggesting he doesn't mind losing those games but to suggest the league final is a 'big' game for Kilkenny is a tad over the top I reckon. I spoke with Cody on the eve of the league campaign this year at a time where the retirements were still fresh news and even then the focus was on the summer.
The thing about these Tipp v KK matches over the last 3 years has been as close as the break of a ball. I think if a team is held goaless they will be on the losing end.
@AlanSmith I agree that September is the target for the Cats, but I think Cody would have liked to have kept a winning momentum going to help them win the title.
@Shaun Cronin Yes they have been close, so close in fact that they have been impossible to predict. On that note, who would you say will win on Sunday?
@AlanSmith Also, some quarters have been saying that Kilkenny are a spent force after that loss to Galway. Cody won't like that either....
Oh throw me under the bus! I actually can't pick it it is so close but since you pushed me my neck on the line. Heads: Kilkenny, Tails: Tipp ..... It's tails I will go for Tipp.
@Shaun Cronin And I can say that I actually witnessed the coin toss and it did land on tails......
@Paul Martin I thought Limerick had Kilkenny on the rack and let them back in with sloppy goals, Tipp won't do that, it is as I said and have literately just done a coin toss.
@Paul Martin What makes you think they lack confidence Paul?
@Paul Martin So do you think Tipp will get to the final? Who will win the title then Paul?
@Paul Martin Galway must be delighted as well whoever they play will be considered favourites and they will yet again be coming out of the so called 'long grass'. I don't think they liked the favourites tag against Cork.
@Shaun Cronin I think I have to disagree with you, and your coin, Shaun, I think Kilkenny will get to the final and give Galway a right beating.....
@Peter Towe We will have to have a pint on it so mate I will stick with my 'magic' and Tipp.
We will have to leave it there then lads and agree to disagree Shaun. Good luck to both teams and here's to a cracking semi-final on Sunday.
Till next week my friend!