Tipp manager John Evans was delighted with the performance of his team in their seasonal debut against Limerick IT in the McGrath Cup at Clonmel on Sunday.
“Limerick have a good bit done and a good few games played and we had to come in and try to get the lads together in a week and to play football. It is grand to talk about it in theory but doing it in practice is another thing”, said the Kerry man.
He added - “But to be fair to them, it looked as if they were going to pull away from Limerick IT very easily. But Limerick are good and fit and had a good bit of work done. They came back at us and made us work very hard.
“It was probably good to be going in a point or two down at half time because it got our fellows to focus a bit.
“It was the first game of the year and we will need another two or three weeks to get it right. But it is grand to be trying out new players. We had new players in Thomas and Eoghan Ryan, John O’Callaghan, Michael Quinlivan and Donal Lynch and these are young guys on board with us this year.
“And then we had the senior players such as Barry Grogan coming in and settling the game and giving a bit of direction.
“Michael Quinlivan got his first point and showed well for the ball. It’s about introducing these fellows so it’s not going to be a surprise. We move on to next Sunday and hopefully we will be better again”.
The manager said he was worried about the second quarter when the Tipp display dipped and they surrendered an eight point lead to go one behind.
“I was quite worried, no doubt about it, but it goes back to what I was saying about theory and practice. You are talking about levels of fitness and doing work in the gym is no substitute for being out in the field in the muck and the gutter. They have work done but they need a bit of sharpness”.