Injuries won’t be offered as excuse

John Knox

Reporter:

John Knox

Kilkenny team manger Brian Cody looks on from the sideline during Saturday evening's Leinster Senior Hurling Championship semi-final replay defeat by Dublin at O'Moore Park, Portlaoise. Pic by John McIlwaine
KILKENNY have been plagued by injuries virtually all season and up to eight players are receiving treatment for one knock or another as they approach Saturday’s blockbuster in Nowlan Park, but they must soldier on regardless.

KILKENNY have been plagued by injuries virtually all season and up to eight players are receiving treatment for one knock or another as they approach Saturday’s blockbuster in Nowlan Park, but they must soldier on regardless.

Kilkenny boss Brian Cody has experienced it all before, but no squad can allow such things to get them down, he insisted.

“We have more than our share of injuries,” he admitted. “That is a worry and there is no use saying otherwise. But we cannot do much about that. The medical team are doing all in their power to get the injured players right.

Forget negatives

“We won’t start looking at the negatives,” he added immediately. “We will look at getting ourselves ready for the Tipperary game. Obviously it won’t be physical preparations. It will be mental.”

He admitted there was no hope of any of the injured players like Henry Shefflin or Michael Fennelly making a dramatic return for the Tipp match.

“It is a question of us getting our heads around everything now and pushing forward to get ready for next weekend,” he insisted. “The challenge ahead is massive, but then, there are no easy options at inter-county level.”

Playing Tipperary in early July was not supposed to be part of the story according most fans, it was suggested by the media during the post match interviews.

“We didn’t have any scripts coming into the championship,” he said with a wry smile on his face. “The scripts were all yours, the media. You will have to revise them, I suppose.

Injuries

“We haven’t made injuries excuses in the past, and we are not going to start now. You have what you have and that is the way it works. You don’t legislate for that; you don’t want it to happen. You play with what you have. The best team on the day always wins. That is the way it works.

“We had a great battle with Tipperary in the League final in Nowlan Park, and thankfully the result went our way. That was a wonderful match and wonderful occasion.

”Again it will be a huge occasion for Kilkenny and Tipperary, the players and for the fans too, but like in any big game, it is all about winning. The alternative has no appeal.”