Keating deserves better than short memories
Published 07/10/2015 | 02:30
Having been refused tickets by the Tipperary County Board for the All-Ireland hurling final because of his analysis of the semi-final defeat by Galway, 'Babs' Keating has taken another hit in an unflattering depiction of his second managerial term with his native county in 2006-07.
The extracts from Brendan Cummins' autobiography, carried in last Saturday's Irish Independent, weren't the words of a man best pleased with his Ballybacon-Grange clubmate. The goalkeeper paints a picture of a rather chaotic camp.
It's hardly unexpected, since Keating dropped Cummins during the 2007 championship.
What with Babs being refused All-Ireland tickets by his own county board and a former player all but ridiculing his methods, it would be easy for a younger generation to forget the massive contribution he has made to Tipperary, first as a dual player and then as hurling manager.
It would also be very unfair, since no one did more to change the course of Tipperary history at a time when they ended a 16-year wait for a Munster title in 1987.
He brought a whole new dynamic to Tipp - on and off the field - while also adding greatly to broader GAA life through his effervescent character.
Babs presided over two All-Ireland, five Munster and two Allianz League title wins by Tipp in eight seasons (1987-94). Tipp have won two All-Ireland, one via the 'back door', six Munster and three League titles in 21 seasons since then, which puts his achievements into context.
It's a pity the Tipp board saw fit to ignore that when his ticket request arrived. A short memory is not a nice characteristic.