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08th Aug 2022

Former manager Paudie Murray doesn’t spare Cork after camogie final loss

Patrick McCarry

Paudie Murphy

“When you’re taking a player from your forward line, you are always going to be in trouble.”

Considering how close Paudie Murray is to the current Cork camogie panel, having coached most of the players up until last year, his forthright comments would have taken a few by surprise.

Cork were looking set for a 29th All-Ireland camogie triumph until a late Sophie O’Dwyer goal saw their two-point lead turn into a one-point deficit. They managed to level the scores but a Kilkenny point, with a minute to spare, saw Brian Dowling’s side triumph.

In his post-match analysis for The Sunday Game, Murray was unflinching in his commentary and opinions on where and how Cork lost the game.

“All year, and I’ve watched all their games this year, I’ve been very puzzled with the way they’ve set up. It’s taking a long time, then, for them to get into the game. They go back and change up their system then, all of a sudden, they take over.

“The disappointing part for me is that, coming into the final, I thought they would have looked at all their mistakes and rectified it, but they didn’t.”

Fiona Keating of Cork after her side’s defeat in the Glen Dimplex All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship Final. (Photo by Piaras Ó Mídheach/Sportsfile)

Paudie Murphy on Cork’s final tactics

In his 10 years in charge of Cork, Paudie Murray led Cork to seven All-Irelands and won four of those. He pointed out how Cork won the 2017 and 2018 finals so perhaps Sunday’s defeat was the rebel county’s turn to ‘take some of the medicine’.

“The [Kilkenny] goal was unfortunate, but if you don’t score for the first 20 minutes, you’re asking for trouble. I thought, for the rest of the game, we played some fabulous hurling. Our backs were outstanding but they left themselves too much to do.”

Murray took issue with what he saw as aimless Cork balls into their forwards, and Matthew Twomey’s side not having more targets up the field.

“I think the biggest issue, this year, is they went with a sweeper,” said Murray. “It puzzled me.

“Because if you look at our six backs, I think we have pace enough to counter anything Kilkenny could throw at us. So, when you’re taking a player from your forward line [to cover back], you are always going to be in trouble.”

Paudie Murray also had no apparent qualms with focusing on individual Cork players and said playing Chloe Sigerson in the full forward line ‘killed us because she has no pace to play in there’.

He also spoke about how Kilkenny scored 1-2 from Cork puck-outs and targeted young defender Maeve Murphy to win possession back, saying that is exactly what he would be telling his team to do, as coach, as she would be ‘less confident than other players’.

Murray said he was confident when Ashling Thompson backed herself to go for a late, equalising point. “I would have liked for her to have taken it maybe five metres closer,” he added, “because, coming off her left and down that flank, it’s normally a banker, but she probably forced it a bit.”

He also claimed Cork goalkeeper Amy Lee should have called for a stray ball knocked hopefully in towards her goal, before that crucial O’Dwyer score. Instead, Thompson tried to get it and it deflected in to give Kilkenny a shot that Lee saved before O’Dwyer got the rebound goal.

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