Saturday 25 February 2017

Hogan's tale of woe the envy of most hurlers

Richie Hogan has said he hates the current All-Ireland SHC structure and would prefer it took more games to reach the final
Richie Hogan has said he hates the current All-Ireland SHC structure and would prefer it took more games to reach the final

Sympathy for Richie Hogan, who apparently 'hates' the current All-Ireland SHC structure, will be in short supply among lots of players around the country, who probably dislike it even more, albeit for different reasons.

Richie would prefer more games ("six or seven at least") rather than being able to reach the final with just three outings, as happened this year. That's in contrast to last season, where Kilkenny had five games to qualify for the final after entering at the Leinster quarter-final stage.

Many hurlers would love to be Richie's position even once, irrespective of how many games it took to reach the final.

Mind you, he has a point. For some strange reason, Leinster seed their previous year's winners into the following season's semi-final. And since Kilkenny have won 14 of the last 17 Leinster titles, it greatly reduces their championship schedule.

Surely, with seven counties in the Leinster quarter-finals, no team should be guaranteed a bye to the semi-finals. Munster applies no such privileges on its champions.

Irish Independent

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