Eamon O'Shea: Reaching the league final is 'strange'

Updated: Tuesday, 22 Apr 2014 14:25 | Comments

Tipperary were full value for their win over Clare
Tipperary were full value for their win over Clare


Crisis! What crisis I hear you ask? Before Tipperary played Dublin on 23 March in their final regulation game in this year's Allianz Hurling League, many were of the view that another defeat for the Premier County could be detrimental with regard to progress in the months ahead. 

However, Eamon O'Shea's side showed enough composure to get the win, while the Dubs failed to get their maths right. 

Tipperary survived in the top flight and have prospered since. Wins over Cork and, more notably against Clare in Sunday's league semi-final, sets up another date with Kilkenny in the final on 4 May at Semple Stadium.

If it's as good as their titanic battle that decided the 2009 decider, then a treat awaits in Thurles on the next Bank Holiday weekend.

O'Shea says it's a strange feeling to have to reached this year's final.

Speaking to RTÉ Sport he said: "It seems strange to be in a league final after the slow start we made. The most important thing for me is the spirit we have shown even when were losing matches early in the campaign. We never capitulated."

Most managers will always point to the fact their troops can deliver much more. Despite their seven-point win over the All-Ireland champions, O'Shea wasn't entirely happy.

"It seems strange to be in a league final after the slow start we made" - Eamon O'Shea

"We were bit slow against Clare," he revealed.

"Overall, we are nowhere we want to be in terms of the quickness of our hurling. 

"That said, it was great to play the All-Ireland champions. They're a really classy team in respect of the way they play the game." 

Looking ahead to another meeting with Kilkenny, the Tipperary boss was somewhat mischievous as he recalled the last couple of meetings with the Cats which were played in Nowlan Park.

"There was a great atmosphere in Nowlan Park and we'd like to go back there again.

But I'm delighted the game is in Thurles."   

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