TIPPERARY manager Declan Ryan hailed a “super performance” from his players in last Sunday’s Munster senior hurling final.
The Clonoulty-Rossmore clubman, who won All-Ireland senior medals in three different decades as a player, was thrilled with the manner of Tipperary’s 21-point victory.
He said: “It was just a super performance from the players. I’m delighted with the way they went about their business today and everything seemed to go right.”
Ryan reserved special praise for four-goal hero Lar Corbett, who he played alongside in the 2001 All-Ireland final.
Ryan said: “He’s an incredible player when he gets the right type of ball. We know we have scoring potential there in our forward line, and if we get them enough ball we can do some damage. The ball seemed to fall right for us today, it didn’t seem to fall for Waterford at all.”
Tipp’s tactic of peppering the Waterford full-back line with high and diagonal deliveries into space worked a treat as Tipp bagged five first half goals.
And Ryan explained: “We won plenty of good ball out around the middle of the field and in our half-back line. They delivered some great ball in, and some day they end up in the back of the net, some days they go wide. Today, everything seemed to go right for Tipperary and it was one of those days.
“We were very good in our half-back line today. We’ve had some criticism in that department in the last couple of games, but I think they showed what good men they are, they all stood up today and they played as well as they could.”
But Ryan admitted that the concession of frees in scoreable areas is something that needs to be addressed.
He revealed: “It’s something we worked on earlier in the season, and I think we only conceded eight against Clare, which was a big plus for us. “It’s obviously something we can work on for the next day.
“It’s important to have things you can work on, and conceding, I don’t know what the full amount was (20) but it was considerable at half time. We can work on that for the next day.”
And Ryan admitted that a straight run to the All-Ireland semi-finals is another massive bonus from last Sunday.
He said: “There is no doubt about that. Every team that was playing this year, they started out in the championship wanting to go through the front door. Tipperary were no different in that regard.
“I’m just delighted for our backroom team and the players, who have put in a huge effort to get themselves to the level they were at today. Five weeks to an All-Ireland semi-final now, and we know we have a bit of work to do to keep the feet on the ground.
“It’s new territory for Tipp in a lot of ways: to score that many goals, there is going to be a certain amount of talk, but we have a lot to look forward to.
“There is going to be a certain amount of club games thrown in there as well. I’m sure there will be plenty of hype after today’s performance but we’re lucky; I think we have a lot of experienced players in the group and a lot of the younger guys are used to winning.”