Cummins laments Dublin's regression after year to forget

By Conor McKeon

BRENDAN Cummins has stated that Dublin "looked manufactured" in their heavy All-Ireland quarter-final loss to Tipperary and that their poor performance was "the story of Sunday," in Thurles.

"That was the story of Sunday, how poor Dublin were," said Tipp's legendary former goalkeeper (inset), at the launch of this year's M Donnelly All-Ireland Poc Fada Finals.

"I saw them in the league and they weren't great, even though they had Tipp on the rack after 20 minutes in their league game.

"They seemed to be going over and back across the field and when the pressure came on their skills didn't seem to be as good as I thought they would be when seeing them in the flesh.

By comparison, Cummins pointed out: "you look at 'Bubbles' O'Dwyer or Lar Corbett hitting a ball it is all natural.

"Lar hit a ball over his shoulder. It looked like he hardly hit it but it went 80 or 90 yards.

"That's natural ability. Dublin looked manufactured on Sunday, which is something I haven't seen them look in a long while.

"Again, there is an opportunity there for Anthony if he stays or someone else if that happens, to try and get the structures right and move on with the players.

"But it was a bad day for Dublin. No doubt about that."

Much of the analysis of the current well-being of hurling in the Capital has focused on the outward migration of promising players to football, a problem which Cummins says Tipperary are facing now themselves.

"The whole dual player debate has opened up big time now. It's happening in Tipp at minor grade now.

"Believe it or not, some of our good hurlers are going to the football. We have maybe struggled at minor level because of that.

"The players are splitting their loyalties because football is becoming more high-profile at underage.

"Remember, they are winning at U16 and U14 tournaments against Cork and Kerry so when the bus goes off now they are not saying we are going to get hammered today. They are saying we are going to beat Kerry and Cork, that's what we do kind of thing. So that filters up as they get older.

"It is a problem in Tipp and they may have to make a decision the way the game is gone."