Premier chief plays down bench spat with Cody
TIPPERARY County Board chairman Sean Nugent has laughed off his touchline spat with Kilkenny manager Brian Cody during the Allianz Hurling League final at Semple Stadium.
Nugent acknowledged that Cody was "seriously annoyed" when he marched towards the Tipp dugout during the first half before verbals were exchanged. It is understood that a remark was passed towards Cody from the Tipp bench – but not by Nugent.
Cody reacted by storming to the edge of the Tipp dugout and TV pictures showed that his anger was directed at Nugent, with Premier County board secretary Tim Floyd seated alongside him. Speaking after the game, Cody played down the incident and joked that he "made a mistake in what bench I was at".
Nugent adopted a similarly jovial stance when contacted yesterday.
"Brian came in just to look for directions to his own dugout. We gave him the directions and he went there. He said he was lost!" Nugent said.
"He was seriously annoyed at the time but in Tipperary we have immense respect for Brian. He's a passionate man about the whole thing and when you're that passionate, as the rest of us are as well, it can overflow at times. But it adds to the excitement of the whole occasion.
"We went to the Kilkenny dressing-room after the game and everything was grand. There's no problem at all that way. We have great respect for them."
Nugent admitted that the intense nature of the rivalry between Kilkenny and Tipperary helps to make the fixture what it is.
"It's absolutely intense," he said. "You'd find it hard to find words to describe what it is – with the emotion and the effect that it has on people."
Tipperary's players trained at 11.00 yesterday morning and they will complete a ball wall session tomorrow evening before being released back to their clubs for the weekend.