Tipperary supporters will be looking for a positive response from the senior hurlers when they welcome Waterford to Semple Stadium on Sunday afternoon next for the third round of the Allianz National Hurling League.
Coming off the back of the defeat at the hands of Kilkenny in the last round at Nowlan Park - a defeat which resulted in a lot of positives emerging despite the loss -the management team led by Michael Ryan (pictured below) will throw down the challenge to the players to get back to winning ways against the league high fliers who remain unbeaten and who seem to be in fine form.
Winning the home games is a must for Tipp but they know that Waterford will bring a very strong challenge to Semple Stadium - they defeated Tipp in the semi-final of the league last year en-route to winning the silverware and it set them up for a very positive season which saw them all the way to the All-Ireland semi-final. They have built a very firm platform and while critics might suggest that their gameplan is a very defensive one, it is also a very effective one.
Tipperary will have to overcome the Waterford style as they did in the Munster Final and the hope is that the sod will be a little more secure than it was for the Dublin game a few weeks ago. Both sides will want to move the ball quickly and heavy underfoot would not be conducive to this approach.
A number of the Fitzgibbon Cup players will come back into the Tipperary fold and this should give the management team a stronger hand when it comes to choosing their men for the battle. A number of the Tipp panelists were on the successful Mary Immaculate side which won the prestigious competition when they overcame UL in the final, who also had a number of Tipp players in the ranks.
A big attendance is expected on Sunday.