Cody wary of reaction from referee
GAA NEWS:KILKENNY HURLING manager Brian Cody has condemned the actions of some Tipperary hurlers in the All-Ireland semi-final on August 19th.
Cody’s main concern is that the knock-on effect will see All-Ireland final referee Barry Kelly instructed to adopt an overly strict approach for the calendar’s showpiece event against Galway on September 9th.
“I do, absolutely,” he replied to a question about whether he believes Kelly’s superiors will instruct the Westmeath official to punish physicality.
“I think there could be a stupid reaction now. The last three All-Ireland finals were played and the game was let flow. They were outstanding games. Suddenly, there could be this crazy reaction to a couple of instances from last Sunday which should have been dealt with last Sunday, not in two weeks’ time. And suddenly: yellow card, red card for nothing.”
The central competitions control committee reviewed the video of Kilkenny versus Tipperary but felt no player had a disciplinary case to answer. Cody vehemently disagreed. He is particularly incensed about the severe injury to midfielder Michael Rice, who sustained a crushed knuckle and lacerated ligaments in his hand when struck by Pádraic Maher’s hurley in the 19th minute.
Referee Cathal McAllister even awarded Tipperary the sideline cut. “I was beside it,” said Cody. “I’m not the referee, I’m not going down the line of handing out yellow cards to anybody but that lad will be out of hurling for the rest of this year. It’s bad enough to miss an All-Ireland final but he’s also going to miss every championship match for his club, which is equally as important to him.
“There was some incidents in the game last Sunday that ‘physicality’ wouldn’t describe it. Physicality is good. It’s a physical game but there were some instances in the game last Sunday that are not part of the game.
“Being very, very blunt and very, very honest about it, I would defy anyone to show me anything done by any Kilkenny player that would fall into that category. That’s not coming out in the post -match comments.
“It’s as if the All-Ireland final has been scrutinised massively now because certain players should be punished for last Sunday’s game. But I’ve watched that game a lot of times and there were some things that happened that shouldn’t have happened. . .
“If people saw dirt – call it what you like in that game – . . if, as a result of that, Kilkenny are going to be chastised the next day . . . we were not involved.”
Cody does not want to see an overreaction or a rash of yellow cards handed out in the initial stages against Galway.
“The shenanigans, call it what it you like – it’s stupidity, we certainly don’t encourage it – (but) a fella goes out and there is tension, it’s a big day, a big match, the game is on. He goes past a fella and they brush off each other and there is a jostle. That’s not the end of the world is it?
“But when it goes beyond that, it become dirty, by all means . . . But what I’m saying is that if the referee is going to start producing cards for that sort of thing, the stupidity at the start of the game, then it become messy.”
Cody gave the example of Galway minor captain Paul Killeen’s dismissal, by Offaly referee Tony Carroll, for a second yellow card in their All-Ireland semi-final defeat to Tipperary. “I didn’t see it but I’ve heard enough about it – do they want the game refereed the way that Galway minor chap was sent off last Sunday? Everyone tells me it was disgraceful.
“Is that the game we want?”