Monday 18 December 2017

O'Grady's 'legacy' can drive Treaty to glory – Beary

Donal O'Grady, left, and TJ Ryan in conversation after defeat to Galway in March
Donal O'Grady, left, and TJ Ryan in conversation after defeat to Galway in March
Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

LIMERICK selector Paul Beary insists Donal O'Grady has left a "legacy" that his side will carry into their Munster championship opener against Tipperary in Semple Stadium on Sunday.

Beary, manager TJ Ryan and new selector Davy Clarke – who was added to the management team in the wake of O'Grady's departure – have divided the coaching duties between them in recent weeks, but the Cork man's influence is still keenly felt.

"Donal was there long enough to leave a legacy, he was there three or four months," Beary says.

"In Division 1B we came across a lot of teams that employed a sweeper system, and that forced us into playing a so-called shorter game.

"It's a matter of taking where we were at with Donal and building on that."

Beary helped coach Na Piarsaigh to a pair of county and Munster titles, but after Tipp's bright finish to their league campaign and Limerick's internal strife, the Treaty men are rank outsiders despite last year's Munster final success.

Limerick enjoyed home advantage in both of their Munster championship matches last year but Beary believes that experience will stand to them as they prepare to take on a Tipp team who had the advantage of operating in Division 1A.


"Meeting people recently, they've been saying there are a lot of newspaper headlines we could use as motivation, but you have to be careful using external sources of motivation – ultimately it has to come from within," he said.

"It's interesting – it's my first year involved at inter-county level and being a spectator last year, seeing how well Limerick did, and being here now, being written off, is very interesting.

"You've to strip all that away and realise you've the same group of players this year that you had last year, and now there's great experience within the panel.

"Overall the lads have done very well to insulate themselves from everything that went on, and Donal O'Grady has been a fantastic captain, steering them and directing them."

After a slow start to their league campaign, Tipp rallied to reach the final, with Beary impressed by their attitude.

"I've seen them live twice, and they've a fairly direct style but they also have a style that opens up the play for certain players," he said.

"They've been very impressive, there's no doubt. I'd have an attack-minded philosophy and we'll take what we've been working on since the start of the year, modify that and then you're trying to derail Tipperary.

"But you can't apply one type of game plan in hurling. It's such a frenzied type of game that you have to be able to extend it in certain situations."

Irish Independent

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