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Ger Loughnane Thinks Big Liam Sheedy Mistake Is Now Costing Tipperary

Ger Loughnane Thinks Big Liam Sheedy Mistake Is Now Costing Tipperary
By Gary Connaughton
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Tipperary put in a brilliant effort in their clash against Limerick over the weekend, but it was not enough keep their season alive.

Having lost their first two games in this year's round robin, Tipp entered the game knowing that they needed a win in order to have any chance of extending their summer.

For much of the game in Thurles, it looked as though there might be a shock on the cards. However, Limerick's class showed in the end as they rallied to string together a number of scores in the final ten minutes and emerge as seven-point winners.


Attention will now turn as to how things went so poorly for Colm Bonnar's side. While they were outsiders to win Sunday's game, questions will be asked as to how they lost each of their first three games in the Munster championship. Ger Loughnane feels a mistake made by Liam Sheedy during his last couple of seasons in charge could now be coming home to roost.

Writing for Buzz.ie, the former Clare manager said that questions should be asked about Sheedy's failure to bring through many young players over the last couple of years, believing he remained too loyal to players who helped him to his pair of All-Ireland triumphs.

Tipp need younger blood - players with the stomach for the physicality that Limerick bring. Their only hope for the future is trusting the younger brigade.

Watching yesterday's game, I couldn't help asking myself a question - where were Ger Browne, Conor Stakelum, Dylan Quirke and Conor Morgan in the last two years?

Why weren't they there? Why weren't they trusted by Liam Sheedy?

I have huge respect for Sheedy - one of the best hurling men in the country. In both his spells in charge of Tipp, he made a serious impact.

But the big mistake Sheedy made in his second spell was staying too loyal to the older brigade.

It's hard to discard fellas who have won All-Irelands for you but there comes a time when you have to do it. The older Tipp players were - or are - tremendously skilful. When play is open, they're fine and will get you beautiful scores.

But you need a rawness and energy against Limerick - and it was the young lads who brought that yesterday. Unfortunately for Tipp, those younger players don't have the conditioning to stay the course with the champions.

It didn't surprise me that they faded. They need another winter or two of hard conditioning to stay with Limerick over 70-plus minutes.

If they'd been trusted by Sheedy, they would be further down the road again.

Tipperary certainly need some new blood in the team, with many in the panel now coming towards the end of their inter-county careers.

As those youngsters cut their teeth at the top level, it could be a couple of years before the county are competing at the very top level again.


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