Friday 23 March 2018

'I don't know does it stand up' - Tipp legend surprised by Michael Ryan's post-match fixture comments

Michael Ryan (left) and Tommy Dunne (right).
Michael Ryan (left) and Tommy Dunne (right). Newsdesk Newsdesk

Former Tipperary hurling captain Tommy Dunne has said he is 'surprised' by Premier county manager Michael Ryan's remarks on club fixtures following last Sunday's defeat to Cork in the Munster championship.

The Rebels stunned the All-Ireland champions in Thurles, hurling with aplomb to edge a 2-27 to 1-26 thriller. Afterwards, Ryan - who led Tipperary to the Liam MacCarthy cup in his first season in charge - spoke to Newstalk about the amount of games his players had been involved in over the last few months.

Read more: Brendan Cummins calls for an intervention in Tipperary dressing room following Cork loss

Ryan pointed out that some of his players had played eight county games in ten weeks as well as club games.

Dunne joined Off The Ball last night to recap Sunday's encounter, and didn't appear to agree with Ryan's fixture gripes.

"I'll be honest with you, I was surprised when I heard it," Dunne said.

"What he points out there is possibly significant but I mean, the fixtures were made a long time ago is a fact so they would have known potentially what the plan was coming up along.

"I don't know does it stand up but again I'm not in there so I don't know what the boys were seeing. It's a possibility for sure because the Galway game, Tipp were well off the pace and Galway annihilated them and I suppose we looked at it and said 'maybe it's a once off, these things can happen' because it had been a long time since Tipp had a performance as poor as the league final, and then lo and behold, we come and play Cork yesterday and while we were competitive on the scoreboard, I looked at the match closely last night over an hour or two and I thought we were well off the pace."

Tipperary are now 4/1 third favourites for the All-Ireland, having been 6/4 before Sunday's defeat. They won't return to action until the start of July, giving Michael Ryan six weeks to re-energise his charges after the upset loss to Cork.

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