Lightening won't strike twice – John Martin
AFTER last year’s All-Ireland final, Brian Cody, as is now the tradition, faced the written media in one of the lecture theatre-type rooms under the Hogan Stand. Whilst answering questions in a way that only Cody can do, he mentioned that prior to the game he and his back room team had sat down, looked at the various scenarios that might be thrown at them by Tipp, and worked on a game plan to counter them.
He didn’t quite say the ‘T’ word – Cody doesn’t do tactics – but that was probably as close to it as he was going to come to it. Basically he was saying that what happened to Kilkenny against Tipp in 2010 wasn’t going to happen in 2011.
In 2010, Liam Sheedy’s revolving forward line, combined with a cocktail of speed, skill and hunger, outfoxed Cody’s hunting packs. In 2011, Noel Hickey, Jackie Tyrell et al knew exactly how to handle Tipp’s forward line in any eventuality.
Cody has always said that hurling isn’t a tactical game. “You can score from 90 yards out so how can it be that tactical?”
Yet he has also said he never takes to the field without a game plan. I’ll not worry abut the subtle difference between tactics and game plans for the moment, but it’s safe to say that Galway won’t be getting the same start against Kilkenny on Sunday that they did in the Leinster final.
The full story is in the current issue of Gaelic Life, published on Thursday September 6. Buy your copy now in your local newsagent, or you can purchase the online version – for only 90p – by clicking here