Saturday 24 March 2018

Replay record guarantees nothing for Cats - Fogarty

Martin Fogarty. Photo: Barry Cregg / Sportsfile
Martin Fogarty. Photo: Barry Cregg / Sportsfile

Jackie Cahill

Former Kilkenny selector Martin Fogarty has warned that Brian Cody's exceptional Championship replay record will count for nothing against Waterford in Saturday's All-Ireland semi-final replay.

And Fogarty, whose son Conor hit the levelling score last Sunday, admits there are no guarantees that the Cats can find the necessary improvements to see off Derek McGrath's side.

The 2013 Leinster SHC semi-final reversal to Dublin is the only time they have failed to finish the job in a Championship replay under Cody's watch but Fogarty pays no heed to history.

"Records are in the past - it doesn't count. You can say on paper it does but these are two new teams, different individuals, a new game. The past has nothing to do with the present," he said.

Read more: Mind games

"Kilkenny will be looking for an improvement and if Waterford come with the same effort, they'll need an improvement. The questions lie with whether they can find it or not - possibly but there's nothing definite about it.

"I'm expecting something similar, I think Waterford will come again. They're nice and lively and some of the scores they hit were unbelievable but we're getting those in the last few years, points hit in a millisecond from all angles and going over."

Fogarty accepts that Kilkenny didn't play well last Sunday - but he was pleased with the team's ability to hang in there and eke out a result when all looked lost.

Read More: Waterford trapped in goal drought as Kilkenny's flow drops too

"The game looked to be gone but what was in it? Two pucks of a ball. The key thing there is that when your back is against the wall, and you're down three or four points, that you don't allow it to go to six, seven, eight," he said.

"That comes from winning matches at the death and coming back in games. It's very hard to do that but it's like a long-distance runner who could be on a lad's shoulder for 10 or 15 kilometres.

"He either has the mental strength to hang in there and get a burst or goes back twice as far."

Irish Independent

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