Cadogan brothers united again for Cork hurling cause
Eoin Cadogan switches from football to hurling ahead of Championship clash with Clare
Cork’s Alan Cadogan in action against Tipperary in March. Photograph: Conor Wyse/Inpho
Putting aside any sibling rivalry, Alan Cadogan claims all the credit for convincing Eoin to switch from Cork football to hurling this season. Younger brothers typically act that way.
“Yeah, it’s nice to have a bit of company coming to training anyway, for once,” he says, with no sign of jest. “Over the last couple of years he [Eoin] was trying to get me to come play football and I was trying to get him to play hurling, but I won out in the end, thankfully.”
It’s not the first time they’ve both been on the Cork hurling panel (and both featured in the 2014 Munster semi-final win over Clare), but since then Eoin has played football only: at 25, Alan is just coming into prime, while Eoin, at 31, may be a little past his, but it’s clear they do have a special bond and love for Cork on and off the field.
“There is no fear of Eoin,” says Alan, speaking ahead of Cork’s opening Munster showdown against Clare at Páirc Uí Chaoimh. “He likes a challenge, He is not coming back to make up the numbers. There is huge competition for places. Two or three fellas going for fullback, two or three fellas going for centre-back.
“He got six games in the league under his belt. He has been here before when he was playing both of them, so he understands it. And he is enjoying his hurling and that’s the main thing. I’d help him along. I’d work with him a small bit in the ball alley all right. He always says forwards are more skilful than backs so, we spend a good bit of time in the ball alley and what not.”
Whatever about being the less skilful, Eoin did speak last month about his return to hurling for 2018, giving a nod to his younger brother in the process: “It’s always nice to be involved in any team, but to be involved with a team with someone from your own family, is an attractive thing to be able to take on.”
Now it’s all about taking on Clare on Sunday. A teacher at Rochestown college, Alan is looking forward to a long summer of hurling – having gone so far last year.
“We were Munster champions, but it’s a new structure, new format, and all we’re focused on is the first game against Clare. Munster is hugely competitive, you’ve to finish in the top three teams so there’s going to be two teams whose year is going to be over in the middle of June, so this year it’s hugely different, but it’s one we’re looking forward to.”
The sending off of Damien Cahalane may ultimately have cost Cork in last year’s All-Ireland semi-final loss to Waterford, but there’s no looking back on that now: “I can’t remember the score when the red card happened but things happen, we were beaten comprehensively in the end by Waterford, we could have no complaints. But we’re just focusing on now, looking after ourselves. I wouldn’t say it was a missed opportunity, it happened and we were beaten comprehensively.”