Sunday 26 October 2014

O'Leary already thinking ahead to Mitchels test

Jason O'Connor

Published 18/12/2013 | 05:36

Dr Crokes Management Malachy Walsh, Noel O'Leary and Vincent Casey on the sideline at the East Kerry O'Donoghue Cup final at Fitzgerald Stadium, Killarney on Sunday. Photo by Michelle Cooper Galvin.

IT'S almost becoming clichéd to talk about the club's success in such glowing terms, but Noel O'Leary could still find magnificence in Dr Crokes' recording setting East Kerry Championship victory last Sunday.

"For a team to go eight wins in-a-row in a competition like the O'Donoghue Cup is an outstanding achievement and for a player like Colm Cooper to score eight points in a final is a fair achievement in an O'Donoghue Cup match," the Dr Crokes joint manager said of last Sunday's victory

He said the team did not take the challenge of Legion lightly in the build-up to the decider despite the margin of the club's other three wins against the same opposition this year.

"The players knew they had to be professional because in a local derby like this anything can happen and Legion were well prepared for this today," O'Leary said.

He admitted that the club faces a big challenge over the next two months in getting the player's ready for their third consecutive All-Ireland Senior club semi-final against Castlebar Mitchels of Mayo.

"This is where we as a management team and the club in general have to come in now. We have to work hard on keeping the players focussed and getting this thing (winning an All-Ireland Club title) done right once and for all.

"We're taking two weeks off after today, but once Christmas is over we'll be back straight away getting ready. There's a lot of preparation to be done between getting our own performance right as well as adjusting to the new rules that we will be playing under for that match not just in terms of fouls and black cards but also in terms of the gumshields as well."

Plenty to ponder for the club over the festive season indeed.


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