THE Tipperary under-21 panel has been named to face Cork in their Munster quarter-final clash at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Wednesday, June 6th (throw-in 7.30pm) - the winner of that encounter will face Limerick in the semi-finals on July 18th.
The scheduling of the game, following a weekend of club championship action, leaves a lot to be desired. A number of players on either panel have senior inter-county commitments, club commitments and exam commitments. Tipperary, for example, will be without Jason Forde. The up-and-coming Silvermines star, who inspired Nenagh CBS to All-Ireland Colleges glory, starts his leaving certificate examinations that week.
If anyone is capable of managing the Tipperary under-21 team through these difficult circumstances it is Ken Hogan (Lorrha & Dorrha). Hogan, an accomplished coach who has previously managed the Tipperary senior team and guided Coolderry (Offaly) to this year’s All-Ireland club final, is joined on the management team by TJ Connolly (Cashel King Cormacs) and Tony Lanigan (Holycross-Ballycahill).
Tipperary are seeking their tenth title at the grade and a first since 2010 when Ken Hogan guided his side to an All-Ireland triumph. In 2011, however, Tipperary lost to Cork (1-21 to 4-19) at the Munster semi-final stage having beaten Waterford in the opening round.
The 2011 clash with Cork proved to be an extraordinarily entertaining affair defined by 45 scores in 60 minutes. Tipperary got the better of Cork (2-17 to 0-21) in 2010 and once again stunned the Rebels with another superb display in 2009 (2-22 to 0-25). In 2009 the corresponding minor side was surprised by Waterford in the Munster final (0-18 to 1-13). Interestingly Tipperary got the better of Cork in the ’09 Munster minor semi-final following a replay - the drawn game finished 5-17 apiece while Tipp won the replay in Thurles 2-21 to 1-12.
Tipperary under-21 hurling panel: Cathal Barrett (Holycross-Ballycahill), Sean McCormack (Borris-Ileigh), Andrew Ryan (Toomevara), Padraig Heffernan (Clonoulty-Rossmore), Denis Maher (Thurles Sarsfields), Pa Ryan (Clonakenny), William Ryan (Clonakenny), Brian Stapleton (Templederry Kenyons), Justin Cahill (Kilruane MacDonagh’s), Daire Quinn (Nenagh Eire Óg), Dan McCormack (Borris-Ileigh), Ruairi Gleeson (Kildangan), David Collins (Drom & Inch), Cian Hogan (Lorrha-Dorrha), Eanna Murray (Templederry Kenyons), Aidan McCormack (Thurles Sarsfields), Tommy Heffernan (Nenagh Eire Óg), Liam McGrath (Loughmore-Castleiney), Sean Curran (Mullinahone), John O’Dwyer (Killenaule), Dara Mooney (Eire Og Annacarty), Niall O’Meara (Kilruane MacDonagh’s), Alan Hogan (Shannon Rovers), Liam Treacy (Loughmore-Castleiney), William Maher (Lorrha-Dorrha), Thomas Butler (Clonoulty-Rossmore) & Jason Forde (Silvermines).