We can get better, says Captain Fantastic

Jackie Cahill

Jackie Cahill

TIPPERARY captain Eoin Kelly believes that the All-Ireland and Munster champions can get even better, despite demolishing Waterford by 21 points last Sunday.

The Mullinahone clubman, who scored his 20th and 21st championship goals for the Premier County last Sunday, admitted that lessons can be learned from 2008, when Tipp lost to Waterford in an All-Ireland semi-final after losing the provincial championship.

When asked if Tipp can find another gear for the forthcoming semi-final against Limerick or Dublin, Kelly replied: “We got caught in 2008 against Waterford after six weeks. We weren’t ready for it. In 2009 we had to be prepared for it but Limerick weren’t as organised in ‘09 as they are now.

“Whatever team comes through, there is a massive challenge there and we are looking forward to it.

“Playing there the goals were going in but the one thing that was thrown at us at half-time was that we only played as a forward unit, that our work rate wasn’t as good as it could be.

“We acknowledged that we were so far ahead but we wanted to win the second half.

“We did that. A few goals and challenges that were thrown at us at half-time, we met them head on and I think that is the most pleasing thing.”

Kelly collected his fourth Munster SHC medal last Sunday and is now anxious to kick on and pocket a third Celtic cross in September.

And he said: “Munster finals are there to be won, it’s Tipperary’s ninth title in 40 years and I don’t care how we won it, I’m happy standing here.

“To be honest we are delighted with that performance and if we could get up near that every day we’re going in the right direction.”

And Kelly, who scored 2-6, paid tribute to Lar Corbett’s fabulous individual display.

He said: ‘You’d have to be in the dressing room, you ‘d have to be in training just to see the way Lar works for the team.

“I know he’ll probably be slagging me later on! He gave me a gilt-edged chance (in the first half) and I missed it.

“Lar is playing for the team and when you are playing for the team you will get your own chances.

“The message we get going out as individuals is to create for other lads, and if you have that in your mind everything else will fall into place and Lar would tell you that himself and long may it continue.”