Tipp like 'wounded animals'
TIPPERARY manager Liam Sheedy has described his team as "wounded animals" following their heavy defeat against Cork in the Munster SHC on May 30, writes Jackie Cahill.
Tipp, beaten All-Ireland finalists last year and provincial champions in 2008 and 2009, suffered a humbling 10-point defeat against the Rebels at Pairc Ui Chaoimh.
But successive victories against Wexford, Offaly and Galway have brought the Premier County to another All-Ireland semi-final and a showdown against Waterford, who won at this stage two years ago.
Sheedy has done well to rise his team following that Cork defeat and he reflected: "They were wounded animals and thankfully they have showed the right approach.
"We have had a slice of luck along the way. We could have found ourselves out of the championship the last day.
"Galway were in pole position. In fairness to the lads, I think they showed great strength in the last couple of minutes to get the three vital scores to win the game. From that point of view, it is good to be back in an All-Ireland semi-final."
Tipp defeated Waterford in the 2009 Munster final, but at Croke Park, the Deise beat their neighbours in 2006 and 2008.
Next Sunday, Tipp will face Davy Fitzgerald's Waterford, a team with a fierce emphasis on tactics and organisation.
But Sheedy countered: "Look, we put a lot of time into our preparation and getting things right. Every game is different too. There were loads of open spaces up there when we played them in 2008. Croke Park is a place where you'll always find the open spaces -- it's a fabulous pitch, a fabulous stadium, fabulous atmosphere.
"You just have to make sure that preparation between now and then gets you ready for what's going to be a massive Waterford challenge. They played in the final in 2008 having beaten us and I'm sure they'd love to get back there. We played in the final in 2009 and we'd love to get back in there.
"This is what hurling is all about -- challenges, and whoever gets in there will have earned it."