There will be a lot of soul searching done in Waterford before the next time the county’s hurlers take the field. Drastic improvement is needed across the board within their camp if they are to bounce back from Sunday’s defeat to Cork and be seen as All Ireland contenders.
The Déise now enter the fray that is a qualifier draw full of teams that wouldn’t have been expected to lose so early on in their province, making the road to Croke Park in September a lot bumpier than was initially precieved. Tipperary, Kilkenny, Dublin, Limerick and now Waterford are all in danger of an extremely short summer. Lose on their next day out and that’s it. Goodbye to championship hurling for 2017.
What will come as the biggest cause for concern for the people of Waterford will be the manner in which they went down to Cork in Thurles in yesterday. Their performance was generally poor and lacked inspiration from the outset. Had it not been for an outstanding display by their goalkeeper, Stephen O’Keefe, the Rebels would have summoned them to real hammering.
Waterford legend, Ken McGrath was fulfilling his punditry duty for RTÉ’s live Sunday Game from Semple Stadium and he was disgusted with the way his county played. McGrath did not hold back in his scathing criticism of his old team. He explained that a lack of leaders is what cost the Déise dearly yesterday and also did not spare the management team of Derek McGrath, Dan Shanahan and co.
Big players for Waterford such as hurler of they year, Aussie Gleeson, Brick Walsh and Maurice Shanahan to name a few were peripheral figures especially in terms of their own lofty standards.
Mount Sion clubman, Ken McGrath insists that there is a lot of “soul searching” to be done and a long, hard inspection in the mirror will need to take place to rescue Waterford’s season from here. In addidition, the Déise need someone to step up and steer the ship from here on, as it was the lack of leadership within the set-up which hurt the ex-centre back the most in yesterday’s Munster semi-final.
While Cork must take immense credit for reaching the provincial final, having been written off as genuine contenders before a ball was even pucked this summer, Derek McGrath’s team know that they must amend whatever issues are holiding the back before it is too late.
See for yourself just how disappointed Ken McGrath was with his county’s hurlers showing yesterday:
Ken McGrath says there will be some soul-searching in Waterford after a "leaderless" and "rudderless" display. pic.twitter.com/9twi8W5bLg
— The Sunday Game (@TheSundayGame) June 18, 2017