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Sunday 30 April 2017

Galway stay is better for all - Cody

Kilkenny boss praises 'wonderful careers' of retired Tyrrell and Larkin

Kilkenny manager Brian Cody was at the launch of ‘Leadership in Sport. Lessons for Business’. The networking event is being hosted at the InterContinental Hotel in on January 26 Picture: Sportsfile
Kilkenny manager Brian Cody was at the launch of ‘Leadership in Sport. Lessons for Business’. The networking event is being hosted at the InterContinental Hotel in on January 26 Picture: Sportsfile

Brian Cody deems Galway's continued participation in the Leinster SHC as "beneficial" to the competition and backed the Tribesmen's bid for admittance to both the provincial minor and Under 21 championships.

"Galway are a top team and having them over there on their own with regards to senior inter-county matches is certainly not ideal for them," Cody insisted.

"And for hurling in general they've been a huge part of the Leinster championship.

"I'd prefer to see them stay there."

Asked whether he would be willing to travel to Galway in order to play a Leinster SHC game - one of two major issues on which the current dispute hangs - Cody replied: "Wherever the match is fixed for we'll play, simple as that. That'll be it."

The Tribesmen will compete in the 2017 Leinster SHC and are fixed to play Dublin in Tullamore on May 28th.

Thereafter, their presence is less certain.

Endorsed

A motion from the Liam Mellows club calling for Galway's senior, intermediate, U21 and minor hurling teams to compete in a single provincial model and to empower the county to make an approach to Munster about their inter-county teams taking part in the Munster championships from 2018 forward was unanimously endorsed and approved by all 253 delegates at congress on Monday night.

Cody's voice appears to contradict those delegates from all the other Leinster counties on the issue of allowing Galway to compete at minor and Under 21 level.

Leinster Council chairman, John Horan, explained that their huge success at both age groups lately had worked against Galway, with self-preservation influencing the vote to keep Galway out.

"We have discussed that every year and there is no change," he said recently.

Horan also revealed that Galway have received €20,000 in each of the past three seasons to offset revenue they may have received from a home game in the championship, though their grievance is over perceived fairness rather than lost finance.

Cody, meanwhile, also paid strong tribute to Jackie Tyrrell and Eoin Larkin, both of whom retired from inter-county hurling in recent weeks.

Of Tyrrell, Cody surmised: "He sort of made that position his own for so long.

"He had such a physical presence allied to his skill and reading of the game. He's had a wonderful career.

"Captained Kilkenny to win an All-Ireland final and was a huge leader, huge presence there and got so much out of his career and had such a long career as well."

"Everybody talks about Eoin and they talk about a work rate," Cody went on, praising his other James Stephens' club mate.

"And obviously he epitomised that but his skill level was complete as well. He had it all.

"Obviously the two lads I would know for a long, long time being clubmates as well.

"They can be absolutely just... so proud and so satisfied with the careers they've had."

Cody sounded cautious on the subject of a return for Michael Fennelly, who is battling an Achilles injury suffered in the All-Ireland semi-final replay victory over Waterford in Thurles.

"It's a difficult one, it's a tough one. He's absolutely going to give it every possible chance to come back," he said.

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