Limerick’s title is already etched on the cup by pundits
Cork selector Diarmuid O’Sullivan said that if you want to believe everything that has been written and said today, then “Limerick’s name is already engraved on the trophy”.
When asked about the reality of entering the All-Ireland Finals as an underdog, O’Sullivan drew attention to the narrative painting Limerick as a likely successive champion.
“Underdogs? I’m sure you listen to the TV and everything that has been written and said today guys, Limerick’s name is already engraved on the mug so where are we going from?
“They are the best team that has played the game in the last few years so we will show up, see how we move forward and we will go against them what we can.”
O’Sullivan credited the Cork players for “taking control of the situation” between the end of regular time and the start of extra time, having been hit with a final equalizer by Kilkenny’s Adrian Mullen.
“The guys have taken control of all of these little scenarios and all of these little points that are important in order to win games. Yes it was a sucker, but when we got to the locker room, the players took control of the scenario and took control of the situation again.
“We’ve asked them to be different for the past 12 to 18 months. Last year was of course a break and we didn’t get where we wanted to go last year. So we used the winter to prepare and to talk about this determination and our strength in depth and in pieces.
“It depends on what is in the locker room, it is this heart, this willingness and this willingness. Everyone who wants to climb Everest has to go through it. Our boys; We are very proud of her because maybe 12 or 24 months ago, at the Tipperary game last year, we had Tipperary on our back foot and couldn’t see it, so today was a very enjoyable day from our point of view. ”
O’Sullivan made his point, referring to Cork’s half-back Tim O’Mahony and how quickly he made up for his mistake leading to the Kilkenny goal.
“Tim got it to bed before he went into the locker room, he came out again and had an incredible 20 minutes after that. The mistake didn’t worry him, it didn’t worry our team, so that was the deciding factor. Maybe before. But this team is different. There is more determination in it and we are very happy with what we have achieved. ”
Speaking of the phenomenal impact of the Cork bench and the 0-11 of players called from the stands, including seven from Shane Kingston’s game, O’Sullivan said that is the level of contribution management that is expected.
“That’s why we have a bank. We had 11 guys in Cork whose hearts were in their boots on the Friday night the roster was announced because we can only bring 26. They firmly believed that they had something to offer, and yes, they did.
“The guys who came and made an impression, that’s what we expect from them. The guys at home, we expect them to come back on Tuesday night and try to see if they can challenge some of these players. This is a revolving door. Our bank pick in the past few weeks, we’ve had people come in, get minutes, and drop out of the roster the next week. The boys keep raising their hands, we need that, we want that. ”
He added: “If we put the guys in we expect them to influence the game for us. That wasn’t the case against Limerick earlier in the year. When they came in, especially in attack, we were very ragged.” , we have lost our shape, we have lost our structure, but this qualification system has given us the chance to work on it.
“Shane [Kingston] was our top scorer from the game until today. He didn’t start today, but he was our top scorer from the game. So he obviously felt offended that he didn’t have the opportunity [to start]. He made a difference and it’s up to us to see what we do the next day. “