Thursday 21 September 2017

'Kieran Kingston would have taken your hand off to reach this stage at start of 2017'

Cork manager Kieran Kingston celebrates after the Munster GAA Hurling Senior Championship Final match between Clare and Cork at Semple Stadium in Thurles, Co Tipperary. Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Cork manager Kieran Kingston celebrates after the Munster GAA Hurling Senior Championship Final match between Clare and Cork at Semple Stadium in Thurles, Co Tipperary. Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Conor Neville

In the aftermath of the Munster final, former Clare manager Tony Considine marvelled at Cork's ability to switch from bust to boom in such rapid quick time.

Last year, they were dumped out of the championship in early July by a little fancied Wexford team and the talk was of a lost decade for the inter-county hurlers.

A year later, they are Munster champions and clear favourites ahead of an All-Ireland semi-final.

Galway - a team who they've never lost to in an All-Ireland final - await in the decider and much of the support remains characteristically bullish.

However, some are remaining cagey. Three-time All-Ireland winner Joe Deane believes that 2017 may be a year or two early for this emerging team to land the big one.

And speaking to the Punter's Platform on Independent.ie, former Galway manager and two-time All-Ireland winner Anthony Cunningham told of a conversation with Cork manager Kieran Kingston in Croke Park last Sunday.

"I was talking to Kieran Kingston last Sunday. He was very close to me at the match (Galway-Tipp). He would have taken your hand off to get into a Munster final or an All-Ireland semi-final at the start of the year.

"They're in massive bonus territory. But Cork being Cork, if they win next Sunday, they'll feel they'll win the All-Ireland."

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