CORK manager, Paudie Murray accepted that his charges were a clear second best against Kilkenny in the Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Senior Championship Final at Croke Park yesterday writes Daragh Ó Conchúir.
Murray’s side were going for a three-in-row but struggled to compete with their rivals for the majority of proceedings.
He did not go along with the notion that a team with the hunger of a long absence from the winner’s rostrum would have an unconquerable motivation against habitual victors and refused to accept that as an excuse.
“I’m disappointed” said Murray.
“I’ve never had a problem with losing as long as you play to your potential, and that’s the one thing that disappoints me now. I don’t think we showed enough desire, really, even to compete. I thought we were really flat.
“I thought we prepared really well for it, that we had all the boxes ticked. Look, that’s why a three-in-a-row is so difficult to win, I suppose.
“I look at it the other way (from Kilkenny being hungry) – that winning is a drug. To me, once you win one you want to win more.
“At this stage I can’t put my finger on it. At half time, when we went in, our measurements were down 50 per cent on the norm. That tells its own story, really.
“We’ve always started well in the second half but they took the game to us and got a good goal. We were fighting an uphill battle after that.
"(Kilkenny) had their homework done, they fouled everything out around the middle of the field and didn’t let us get a run on them. You’ve got to congratulate Kilkenny on that, it’s up to the referee to stop that.
He expressed hope that there would be no quick decisions made by players about their futures.
“A lot of them have given a lot to Cork camogie, and if they want to walk away from it I congratulate them on their careers and wish them well – but I certainly think there’s an All-Ireland in this team.
“We’ve been missing the likes of Julia White through injury this year, a couple of those would have given us a lift.
“I’d hope they’d reflect over the winter and see where they are next year.”
That doesn’t necessarily mean that he will be steering the ship mind you but again, he will take time to consider his future.
“I’ll have a good think about it, to be honest. There are probably other things I’d like to get involved in as well, but today isn’t a day to think about it.
“I’ve given it five years and done my best. Maybe it’s time for someone else.”