Brendan Cummins criticises Tipp's inside forwards and calls for 'corrective surgery' to their team
Tipperary legend Brendan Cummins believes Michael Ryan will need to make changes to his side for their path through the qualifiers after they lost their Munster crown to an inspired Cork side yesterday.
Their four-point loss at the hands of Kieran Kingston's men follows hot on the heels of their 16-point drubbing in the National League final against Galway four weeks ago.
The reigning All-Ireland champions have now conceded 5-48 in just two games and have lengthened to 4/1 to hold on to Liam McCarthy in 2017.
Writing in his column in today's Irish Independent, Cummins criticised a lack of aggression from Tipp and said that they allowed Cork to lure them into a 'shoot-out'.
While he believes the Premier county will come through the qualifiers and contest another All-Ireland final come the first weekend in September, the make-up of the team may have to change.
"Some players have been struggling to find form throughout the league and perhaps there wasn’t as much corrective surgery performed as there should have been after Galway, which should have served as a serious wake-up call. There are moments in games where people stand up and make things happen, but in this regard Cork had the leaders yesterday," he said.
"The runs of Conor Lehane and Kingston were key to keeping the Tipperary defence out of shape, allowing the ‘ground attack’ tactic to work a treat.
"They were allowed to roam unchecked but there was a distinct lack of physicality in Tipp’s play.
"Mark Ellis marched out from centre back on three different occasions in the last 10 minutes, Tipp forwards trailing in his wake.
"Cork had their homework done, isolating Tipperary forwards from a defensive viewpoint, and creating space for each other with unselfish runs in attack.
"In attack, they used a ‘bunch-and-break’ tactic brilliantly, bunching close to goal before breaking out to the sides.
"All of this was wrapped in the belief that it takes no skill to work harder than your opponent."
Cummins was critical of a Tipperary's inside forwards for not producing their best form.
"Séamus Callanan was isolated inside and his movement was poor. There weren’t too many occasions where a Tipperary player around the middle third looked up and put a ball in front of Séamus or to the side for him to run onto," he added
"He looked frozen, stuck to the ground, but he did have a goal chance before half-time though he was denied by Nash.
"‘Bubbles’ O’Dwyer looked like he was going to take on the world in the first 15 minutes yesterday but seriously drifted out of the game. John McGrath scored the second-half goal but he was below his usual standards."