Brian Cody knows the type of player he can depend on
Kilkenny manager, Brian Cody, said you can spot the potential in the top players almost immediately because they are prepared to give everything in games.
The man who has managed Kilkenny to 11 All-Ireland senior victories was asked the secret to picking out the players he wanted for his squad during a press briefing before Sunday’s big showdown against Tipperary in Croke Park, and he was short and to the point.
“You see it very quickly,” insisted the James Stephens clubman when asked about what he was looking for when viewing potential players for the panel. “It is easy to make the ball talk if you have that sort of skill.
“But most of the time it is about honesty of effort. You are always being tested, in training, in club matches or whatever. You can see leadership. You can see genuineness, honesty a mile away. It is so important to have that.
“You can’t switch it on and off. It is either what you do or don’t. It is brilliant to have players who do it.”
Players who haven’t those qualities haven’t a hope of surviving, he insisted.
“Inter-county players have to be skilful to make it in the first place; some have outrageous skill,” he continued. “However, the make-up, the character and all they bring is important. It is a team game. You have to completely apply yourself from a team point of view.
“It is no use going out and saying ‘sure I tapped over a few points myself’. What did you do for your team? That is what it is all about. If a lad hasn’t those qualities he is not a gifted hurler.”
As Kilkenny prepare to play their first senior final in August rather than September, Cody said it didn’t make the slightest difference to him when the game was played.
“It could be December for all I know,” he joked, “although the weather will tell you it is not. I am retired from work now, so time is different to me. It is All-Ireland final day. Traditionally the final was in September but it is not, but it makes no difference.”
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