Sunday 20 October 2019

'They must really feel like they let the county down' - Brendan Cummins on Offaly demise - and how it might get worse

Eoghan Cahill of Offaly is consoled by his father Gary
Eoghan Cahill of Offaly is consoled by his father Gary

Offaly are in danger of falling further into the hurling abyss following their weekend collapse against Carlow, according to Brendan Cummins.

Offaly led 1-11 to 0-3 at half time but despite being reduced to 14 men with half an hour to play, Carlow staged a dramatic fightback to down the Faithful 2-14 to 1-16.

Offaly's defeat sees them slipping down to Division 2 and it could be a long way back for the once formidable county.

On this week's Throw-In in association with Allianz, Will Slattery was joined by Brendan Cummins, Conor McKeon and John Brennan, as well as former Wexford camogie star, Ursula Jacob, to look back on all the weekend League hurling and camogie action.

"The confidence of those players must be on the floor," said Cummins. "We are all talking about them. They must really feel like they let the county down. They do have an opportunity of redemption in the Joe McDonagh Cup.

"Having said that, if it goes wrong and they lose the first two games in the Joe McDonagh Cup, they are facing the Christy Ring then and then we are going to have some conversation then. To go down another tier of hurling really does put you in the doldrums."

"At administration level they are miles behind," added McKeon.

"They don't have a culture of coaching and sustaining talent. They don't have a culture when they break into the senior set-up of high achievement and for years Offaly hurling was kept afloat by...obviously you had that Birr team and a lot of guys who drove each other on and drove up standards.

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"Coolderry were Offaly champions last year and they lost to Ballyboden in the Leinster semi-final. All their best players were 34, 35, 36. The big fear for this Offaly team is they will actually get worse. If you take Shane Dooley and Joe Bergin out of that team, they have no scoring forwards."


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