Limerick senior hurling manager and Abbey Principal John Kiely (right) with students Eoin McCormack,Tadgh Hayes ,Donnacha Looby and Vice Princpial and fellow Limerick man Pat Donovan
Limerick senior hurling manager John Kiely is having a most unusual build up to an All-Ireland final with attending ballet shows and handing out results to Leaving Certificate students on his itinerary.
This morning John Keily, who has guided a young and talented group of players to an All-Ireland hurling final showdown with Galway on Sunday , met another group of ambitious young men at one of the most important stages of their lives.
John, the principal of the Abbey Secondary School in Tipperary Town, sat down with each Leaving Certificate student at the school to advise them on the next step in their lives.
While most students listened intently one student, Donnacha Looby a Limerick supporter f rom Pallasgreen, availed of the opportunity to put in a cheeky request for an All-Ireland ticket.
The week has been a busy one for John , "the day job" at the Abbey has to be looked after as does his family life with his daughter Ruth performing in the Children of Eden show at the Excel theatre all week.
"I am very proud of her,it's all ballet and dancing in our house this week and not about All-Irelands" said the Limerick manager who will be attending the Excel with his wife Louise and his other daughter Aoife.
First on the agenda was the handing out of the results and his passion for the job meant he was never going to miss such an important moment for young men he has seen work so hard to achieve thier goals.
"We are absolutely thrilled with the results,its great to see the lads when they realise they have enough points to get the course they wanted and that all their hard work has paid off" he said.
"It is a very important moment in their lives, everything is geared towads this moment for the last six years and it is important to come in and spend time with them and advise them on whats coming next for them.All the teachers are as full of ambition for them as they are of themselves.There is a great sense of satisfaction to see them move on with the next phase of their lives" said the Abbey principal.
Referring to the young Limerick team he has guided to the All-Ireland final he sees similarities with the journey taken ths year by his players and by his students.
"It is just like the students,the players have worked very hard, there is a great spirit and comeradarie among them.We have grown as a group because we have had to dig deep in a number of games that had been slipping away from us.We refused to allow that happen and kept fighting, we are enjoying our time together and there is a great sense of togetherness " said the Limerick manager.
In a busy week after fulfiling his role as school principal by handing out the Leaving results and proudly watching his daughter perform at the Excel John Kiely will have to turn his attentions to turning over the All-Ireland champions on Sunday.
"At the end of the day no Limerick person is satisfied by just getting to a final,it is really important that we can go out and put in a top performance to give ourselves a chance of winning on the day" said the manager.