Tipp reign supreme to leave Rebels reeling
Tipperary are determined to stay on the front foot in this Championship after yesterday's easy destruction of Cork in Semple Stadium.
That was the unambiguous message of their manager Michael Ryan after a commanding 0-22 to 0-13 victory that propels his team into a Munster semi-final clash with Limerick on June 19 in Thurles. With the winners of that game due to then meet either Clare or Waterford in the provincial final, many believe the front-door route to be a potentially penal one for a team still hoping to be in peak condition come September.
But Ryan was adamant last night that Tipp could see no appeal in the 'back door' route that served Tipp so well when they last claimed the Liam MacCarthy Cup in 2010.
"There's no denying a win in a Munster Championship is essential," he reflected. "We didn't want to be in a situation where we were going to have to wait for draws and wait for qualifiers. It's not part of the plan. The plan for us is just to try and keep winning match by match and get the most we can out of this Munster Championship, including competing in the final and winning the final.
"We're very open about what our aims are here and that is to keep winning."
Tipp burst into early control of yesterday's game despite Cork bowing to the modern fashion of deploying a sweeper in front of their full-back line. Six points up inside 16 minutes, the winners' primary weapon was All-Star full-forward Seamus Callanan, who ended the day with a personal tally of 0-8, four of his points from play.
Cork never really threatened a serious revival, their form a continuation of that which drew them into a National League relegation battle after losing all five of their games in Division 1A.
Afterwards, Cork selector Pat Ryan admitted candidly that there were no positives to be taken from such a crushing defeat. "We're disappointed, not a good enough performance" he conceded.
"Tipperary were very good on the day, but I thought we didn't perform. We just didn't work the ball well enough. It's very disappointing from our point of view.
"We expected a better performance and it just didn't happen."
Fielding two championship newcomers in Sean Curran and Dan McCormack, Tipp were also able to put on a show of strength from the bench, with Jason Forde, Patrick 'Bonner' Maher, Kieran Bergin and Niall O'Meara all getting some game-time.
"We only came for the win," insisted manager Ryan afterwards. "Winner takes all, winner goes forward and that's what we came here to do today. Earn the right to go forward."