Search icon


04th Jun 2023

Dowling and Cummins side with Cork in ‘cynical hurling’ debate

Niall McIntyre

Offaly manager Leo O’Connor hit out at Cork’s ‘cynical hurling’ in their All-Ireland under-20 triumph over Cork.

Star forward Adam Screeney came in for close attention in particular from a set of Cork defenders who were notably bigger than their opponents.

Having rounded his man, Screeney was dragged to the ground on three occasions in that first half and this left a ‘sour taste’ in the Offaly manager’s mouth. Cormac Egan was another who shipped a hard belt – the general consensus being that Cork full back Shane Kingston should have been red carded for his first half tackle on the Tullamore player.

“One or two things happened in the first half, absolutely cynical hurling, and that leaves a bit of a sour taste,” said Limerick man O’Connor after the game.

“But look, we were beaten by a better team,” he admitted.

“That cynicism, an Offaly player went through 15 minutes to go, pulled straight to the ground.

“It is just very frustrating. We had three players rounded Cork defenders, they had no one between them and goal, and three times they were pulled down. One of them was a penalty.

“All we can do is ask questions. We went to the fourth official, we spoke to the linesman. As they wear on the sleeve, ‘Give respect, get respect’.”

But Cork manager Ben O’Connor rebuffed the Offaly camp’s complaints, claiming that they’d have done the same thin

“If they got the chance, they’d probably do the same thing. It happens in games.

“You do what you have to do to win and if you’re going to be looking at things like that after, you can go through them with a fine-tooth comb. There’s lots of mistakes on both sides.

“Look, we won by eight or nine points, job done for Cork.”

“Once we went in front, we were never going to be beaten and that’s not being big-headed or cocky – we know the character of these fellas.

Meanwhile, speaking on The Sunday Game, both Brendan Cummins and Shane Dowling were on Cork’s side of the argument.

“I didn’t see anything different today that wasn’t going on in the Munster championship,” said Cummins.

“Think of Howe, the corner back marking Screeney – if he’s to stand back, and leave Screeney off, then all of a sudden, his county career is over.

“There’s always going to be pulling and dragging,” said the Tipp man.

Dowling feels that Cork need to bring this aggression through to their senior team.

“What’s Cork’s criticism the last few years, that they’re too soft. They need a couple of dogs. And it’s no harm to see them there today. And overall, Cork need to bring that into the senior team going forward.”

WATCH: Liverpool BOTTLED the title race 🤬 | Who will win the Premier League?