Tipperary manager Declan Ryan says that his side’s inability to match Kilkenny’s physicality was a telling factor in their 18-point semi-final defeat - their biggest in the Championship since 1897,
The Premier County found themselves five points down after half an hour but managed go get in a point ahead at the break. But Kilkenny stepped up a gear in the second half and the Munster champions had no answer.
Ryan told RTÉ Sport: “You have to compete physically with this Kilkenny team, first and foremost and maybe we struggled in that area there today, particularly with the breaking ball.
“It’s hard to put a finger on it without analysing it. Kilkenny seemed to swarm our guys in the second half. They seemed to win every breaking ball and they got a couple of goal chances and took them so hats off to them... For the second 35 [minutes] we were blown off the field”
Asked about the role of forward Lar Corbett, who seemed to have a man-marking detail on Tommy Walsh, Ryan said: “That’s one of the tactics that we work out before the game and you see how you get on with it. I am not sure how well it worked today but we’ll have to have a look at it again.”
The Clonoulty-Rossmore man took over the team in 2011, the year after Liam Sheedy’s men stopped Kilkenny’s ‘Drive for Five’.
Ryan added that he wouldn’t be making any decision on his future in the aftermath of the historic defeat.
“We got a two-year term. There’s a lot more people than myself involved in that decision. We’ll have to sit down with the county chairman and the back-room team. It’s not a day for making any decisions,” said Ryan.