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Patrick Horgan Doesn't Buy 'No Tactics' Kilkenny Line

Patrick Horgan Doesn't Buy 'No Tactics' Kilkenny Line

Fail to move with the times and you will be left behind by hurling's innovators believes Patrick Horgan.

"It's changing by the week now depending on who you are playing," said Horgan as he picked up his second PwC Player of the Month of the season.

"It's like paper, scissors, rock - everybody can beat each other doing different things."

Cork were KO'd from this year's championship at the quarter-final stage by Kilkenny. It is long been the line out Brian Cody's camp that Kilkenny's secret sauce doesn't include tactics in the recipe - hunger and passion are all they bring to the pitch.

That is a dictum Horgan does not buy.

"You have Kilkenny, everyone says they just play away - they don't, that's definite.

"They have more tactics and video analysis than anyone else - I guarantee you that.

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"It's changing week-to-week and you have to have players who can adapt to that whether they're playing a Limerick type style or a Tipp type style. It's all different styles and if you can't move with it, you're going to be left behind fairly fast.

"The more open-minded you are about the game, the better the conversation you can have with the team about what fella's think. No-one is coming in 'bang', it's a discussion between everyone and it's agreed upon - what you are going to do on a certain day. It might change week-to-week."

PwC GAA/GPA Player of the Month for July, hurler Patrick Horgan of Cork, were at PwC offices in Dublin today to pick up his award. Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

Though he knows the game continues to evolve, Horgan does not think it needs to in terms of rules. He dismissed the suggestion that the game might need two referees.

"Nah. I don't know if you could have two - you could have a soft fella and one team would be getting done. It will stay the way it is."

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In Cork's defeat to Kilkenny, there were two especially cynical fouls on Cork forwards late in the game with the semi-final spot still up for grabs.

Paddy Deegan tugged back Seamus Harnedy he looked to race towards goal and Joey Holden rugby tackled Alan Cadogan after a mighty catch from a long Anthony Nash puck.

Still, despite those infractions in big moments, Horgan does not see the need for measures to be introduced to discourage such cynicism in hurling.

I would love it to stay where it is. If they committed a foul, it’s a foul yeah, but they put themselves in a position where they could be like that.

If I was in the same position I’d expect our fellas to do the same thing.

I’d be delighted if we were the ones up by three, and then they commit a foul like that, you’d be like, ‘Okay chill out now, we’re four up now’. They were the ones in the lead and they earned to right to be like that.

In February Doug Howlett joined the Cork hurlers as high performance lead. He has since returned to New Zealand, leaving his

"He was brilliant," said Horgan of the Munster and All Black legend.

"Someone of his experience in any setup, any time he speaks you’re all ear.

"He’s been there and done it on numerous occasions. He was basically sharing his experiences with us, and how he felt during certain situations and how he thought we were feeling coming up to games.

"It was brilliant working with him, just unfortunate we didn’t get another couple of weeks because he wasn’t going to go home until we were finished. I’d say he didn’t want to go home too early either."

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PJ Browne
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