Monday 20 November 2017

Rebels finally set to deliver

Everyone will be having their two cents worth this week ahead of the final and after playing against Down earlier in the summer, I give them a serious chance.

I spoke to a few Down people after our game and told them they'd a serious team there and that they could go far this year. They laughed it off and took it as polite small talk, though I really meant it. I was very impressed with some of their players like Daniel Hughes and Martin Clarke, though not having Ambrose Rodgers fully fit is a serious and perhaps terminal blow.

Cork have limped to this point, hitting nothing like the heights of last season, but I saw something different in them in the semi-final against Dublin. They have been accused of being flaky, particularly when Kerry are in town, but that wasn't the case when the game was on the line against the Dubs.

With the Kingdom out of the way, they have had a clear run to Sam, which brings its own pitfalls, but this time I think they're ready. They'll have had plenty of time to come up with ways of curbing the influence of Clarke, who is key to the way Down play. It'll be tight, but with the neck on the block, I'm going for Cork to finally deliver. If you knock on the door long enough, someone will answer. Verdict: Cork

Irish Independent

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