Monday 19 August 2019

Memories of 2010 will keep Dr Crokes wary - Buckley

Johnny Buckley. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Johnny Buckley. Photo: Brendan Moran/Sportsfile
Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

Reigning All-Ireland club champions Dr Crokes go into Sunday's AIB Munster club SFC final against Nemo Rangers as clear favourites with the bookmakers but Johnny Buckley insists the memories of their 2010 defeat to the Cork men will keep them on their guard this weekend.

The sides met in early 2011 after postponements had delayed the fixture but Nemo produced a perfect storm to lead by a staggering 13 points at one stage, before eventually winning by two.

Buckley believes their brilliant first-half performance will keep the Killarney men on their toes when they travel to Páirc Uí Rinn this weekend.

"It was something else, Nemo were on fire," recalled the Kerry star.

"They were scoring from everywhere. We just couldn't handle it. It is a good few years ago now.

"It has come back up in the conversation over the last couple of weeks since we've known our Munster final opposition. We'll take a bit from that to learn what we can.

"I was injured for it. We were training the Sunday beforehand, an A versus B game below in Killarney.

Ligament

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"I had an awkward clash with one of our own lads. I tore a ligament in my knee following an innocuous challenge with one of the lads.

"My memories of that day are being very frustrated whilst standing on the sideline with my water bottles.

"We were definitely not good enough that day. They were very impressive. They had a good win. It was a bad day at the office all around."

Crokes haven't lost in the Munster championship since that day and are out to pick up their fifth provincial crown in seven seasons this weekend.

They added an All-Ireland club title in March and Buckley admitted it has been difficult to keep their challenge alive at times this year.

"It has been tough in some elements, enjoyable in others. We sat down after a couple of weeks off in March. We went back into it, it was a new one for the team.

"The way the county championship is run down in Kerry, there is an important block of games that you need to win, otherwise you are gone for the year.

"There was a big meeting before the championship to make sure the bodies were right for that period and to get over that period.

"Certainly, the club lads needed a break after that because it was almost a 15-month campaign at that stage.

"By the same token, we knew we needed to get over that block of early championship games to put us in a position for this run currently."

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