Tipperary fume at quick turn-around after seeing off Waterford

Liam Kearns calls decision to play Cork semi-final just one week later a ‘disgrace’

Tipperary’s Michael Quinlivan in action against Stephen Prendergast of Waterford during the Munster senior football quarter-final at Semple Stadium. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

Tipperary’s Michael Quinlivan in action against Stephen Prendergast of Waterford during the Munster senior football quarter-final at Semple Stadium. Photograph: Tommy Dickson/Inpho

 

Tipperary 0-20 Waterford 0-9

Tipperary manager Liam Kearns is hopeful that top forward Conor Sweeney will be fit for next Saturday’s Munster senior football championship semi-final against Cork at Semple Stadium.

But Kearns is furious that the game is going ahead just seven days after they opened their championship campaign.

He let rip following their expected easy win over a Waterford side who packed their defence but were never in contention in front of a crowd of only 1,658 in Thurles on Saturday evening.

“It’s a disgrace. That decision is one of the worst that I’ve ever come across. I’ve been with the county and I’ve been with county and with clubs over 20 years as a manager, I think it was one of the worst decisions. There is no way Cork or Kerry would be asked to play the following week.

“I am really fed up. My players are working really hard, all they want is a level playing field, that’s all they want any time they go out in the field, just a level playing field we did not get that.

“All the counties are not being treated equally and for me whatever happens in this game I am not going to change my view even if we go out and win here next Saturday.

“I’m saying this now and I’ve saying it here before a ball is kicked, this was very, very wrong. There is no redeeming feature for the Munster Council or the Munster CCC [Competitions Control Committee] in this. I would love the Munster Council to come out and explain it to everybody because we are the only team in the country that has to play twice in seven days.”

He said that Sweeney, who did not play on Saturday because of a hamstring injury, would recover in time if they had another week.

“If anybody else has knocks they won’t make it because in the six-day turn-around that’s the reality of it. It’s about recovery now,” he added.

His men led by 0-7 to 0-3 at the break, having struggled to break down Waterford’s crowded defence.

But Tipperary cut loose after the restart and shot six points without reply in 11 minutes to lead by 0-13 to 0-3.

The league’s top goalscorers failed to find the net but were never in trouble.

Waterford, in fairness, never gave up and manager Tom McGlinchey said they will now hope for a favourable draw in the qualifiers.

“It would be a break to get a nice draw but we’ll see now, it is an open draw. There’s big teams in it like Cavan, a Division 1 team, Mayo are in it. Tyrone or Monaghan are in it, Donegal or Derry so it is going to be hard so we’ll cross our fingers and toes and see what we get.

“You’d have to be happy with the application of the lads and the way they performed but it’s Division 2 against Division 4 and that’s what stood out,” he said.

TIPPERARY: E Comerford; S O’Connell, J Meagher, A Campbell; B Maher, R Kiely, J Feehan (0-1); L Casey, J Kennedy (0-1); J Keane (0-1), K O’Halloran (0-2), B Fox; L Boland (0-1), M Quinlivan (0-3), L McGrath (0-9, seven frees).

Subs: S O’Brien for Kennedy (44 mins), P Austin (0-1) for O’Halloran (46), K Fahey for Maher (50), J Lonergan (0-1) for Quinlivan (54), P Codd for Meagher (57), G Hannigan for Casey (65).

WATERFORD: S Enright; B Looby, A Trihy, J McGrath; S Prendergast (0-2), M Curry, S Ryan; T Prendergast, K Power; D Guiry, C Murray (0-1), B O’Keefe; G Crotty (0-2), J Veale, JJ Hutchinson (0-1).

Subs: J Curry (0-3, one free, one slideline) for O’Keefe (29 mins), C Guiry for Veale (44), J Allen for McGrath (57, BC), M Kiely for Power (67), M Cummins for Trihy, E O’Brien for Hutchinson ( both 71).

Referee: Fergal Kelly (Longford).

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