By Diarmuid Sheehan
Cork’s win over Clare last Saturday night was significant for a number of reasons, but nothing more than that he holds Cork’s dreams of ending the drought across Ireland, at least for one more Week.
Cork hasn’t been too lucky lately, games that should have gone their way weren’t available while a number of great players management had hoped would have significant roles when their plans were to be unavailable for a variety of reasons.
All in all, it’s no surprise that Kieran Kingston stepped over half the pitch of the LIT Gaelic Ground last Saturday night to answer questions about his move Team to answer the quarterfinals with a small cheeky smile on his face.
Because for Kingston: “The prevailing feeling is the relief because this game ebbs and flows is fins. We weren’t sure how our boys would react, we had three weeks off. Was that a good thing? It would be fresh, but Clare had momentum after a very good league season and three big games so we weren’t sure that momentum would be too much to handle. “
That lack of clarity, intruding into the game made Cork, and especially his manager, nervous.
“From our point of view, there was a lot of uncertainty. We were concerned how that would work. Relief is number one but very proud of the way the guys reacted and the character they showed, basically very “young team.
” Five points more to lose a point, and Clare walks towards us in waves. It was a real test of our character and I thought the guys responded really well, really well on the track. “
Kingston tried to contextualize his team’s inexperience at this level of competition by showing off how young his protégés are as a group.
“Apart from Patrick Horgan, we didn’t have a lot of experience on the field, I think. Everyone else was 24 or younger. That was a big worry about how they would end the game, of course, but it was great, “seeing that they finish the game strong. But even with that and 13 players on the pitch we still needed a super save to get out of there. “
Sometimes managers talk about the importance of winning, or the performance, or the blood of new players, but on that occasion there was no denying what the game was about.
Cork has grown into a squad of top scorers and after the positive first three league games in which the majors sack, his team continues to cause problems week after week for teams trying to keep potency at bay.
“We got a lot of that early in the league Done successfully but today we tried to come back and I suppose it’s really trying to strike the balance between when we let it burst and when we try to take it on. ” and don’t go, take the point.
“As you progress in this scenario, you will sometimes fall between two stools. They will say it didn’t work out, I gave a 50-50 pass and I should have put it over the bar. That’s the evolution of the group and I think we’re trying to work on it. If it worked it’s great, and if it doesn’t, it’s not great. “
At one point,” Seamie [Harnedy] had a point that he was likely to blow and a point that [at that time] needed would have, but the chance was there and it wasn’t a 50-50 chance, it was a “70-30 chance because Shane wasn’t in. That’s something we should really encourage, that we should give.”
Scoring goals is of course the key to performance at this level, but for Kingston the efforts at the other end were just as significant – especially Patrick Collins’ save well into stoppage time.
“It was an outstanding save We finished the game with 13 players and one injured and he made an incredible save to keep us in the championship. I couldn’t see it properly from my position but I know it was a brilliant save , the guys talked about it. It’s great for Pa, he’s only playing his second championship game, so it’s good for him, good for his confidence, and of course very good for us. “
Cork had a couple of setbacks before the game, problems for him Showdown with the dubs didn’t get resolved this weekend.
“We had a couple of blows during the week when Eoin Cadogan was injured, Deccie Dalton was not available to us and then Damien Cahalane had appendicitis. We had to rearrange a few things, but the guys adapted very well and it showed: “the depth of our panel and the character of the group.”
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