Friday 23 March 2018

Cummins' understudies

Jody Grace (1995)

Had been Tipperary goalkeeper in 1994 but broke a finger pucking around with Cummins prior to the 1995 Munster championship and that allowed Cummins to get in against Limerick for his debut.

Kevin O'Sullivan (1996-97)

Was No 2 for a season and a half before he opted to go to the USA. Now coaching club football in Tipperary and has coached Tallow in Waterford. Also played soccer as a goalkeeper and won several international caps with the Irish junior team

Justin Cotterell (97, 02-04)

Cotterell carved out a reputation as a fine goalkeeper with Toomevara and was in for two spells with Tipperary, figuring the 1997 All-Ireland final against Clare when he replaced O'Sullivan midway through the championship. Now based in Perth, Australia.

Fergal Horgan (1998)

Horgan was the All-Ireland minor-winning goalkeeper in 1996 and is now a well-known referee on the local scene.

Kevin O'Brien (1999)

O'Brien developed quite a reputation as a prospective top goalkeeper during his time at Waterford IT when he won a Fitzgibbon Cup medal in the company of Henry Shefflin.

Damien Young (2000, 2005-06)

Young had two spells as Cummins' understudy and is now an integral part of the Tipperary backroom team as the video analyst. Also won a Fitzgibbon Cup medal with Shefflin in Waterford.

Eoin Kelly (2000)

Not a lot of people know this, but for the 2000 All-Ireland quarter-final defeat to Galway in Croke Park, Kelly, still eligible to play minor hurling, was selected as the team's reserve 'keeper, displacing Young. The then manager Nicky English wanted to involve Kelly but had to be creative with his numbers on the bench and Young lost out.

Darragh Rabbitte (2001)

The Borris-Ileigh man got his timing right, ousting Young as Cummins' No 2 to win an All-Ireland medal. It was his only championship season. He subsequently went to Australia.

Gerry Kennedy (2007-08)

The only man to displace Cummins during his 17-year involvement with Tipperary squads. For six consecutive championship matches he was the preferred choice of Babs Keating's management team.

Darren Gleeson (2009 - NOW )

At 31 Gleeson may not have too long himself left in the squad but the Portroe man is name-checked by Cummins as being one of the best he has served with. A superb shot-stopper who delivers great length in his puck-outs.

Irish Independent

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