Paddy Carr reaction
By Tony Tighe
When Paddy Carr boarded a flight back to Dublin on Sunday, he did so with his mind at ease.
While it’s not ideal to be based in Ireland, the Tir Chonaill Gaels manager knows that when he’s not around, his backroom team are putting the players through their paces in training.
The proof was in the pudding last Saturday, when they dished out a ruthless 18-point demolition of St Kiernans to book their place in the county final.
“The management team on the ground here are excellent,” said Carr after Saturday’s 2-17 to 0-5 success. “There’s great respect there and I take my hat off to the lads for putting in the hard work.
“While we’ve had a public victory today, but there have also been a lot of private victories. The guys have gotten themselves into very good shape and I think they showed that on the field today in terms of the pace they were able to put into the game. We were happy with our discipline and the way we were able to close out the opposition.
“We had a league game about a fortnight ago against Kingdom Kerry Gaels and we were very rusty. We found it difficult to get up to the pace of the game. We learned an awful lot from that.
“We have generated a lot of honesty in that dressing room and I think the evidence of that was there today. Those lads can be quite pleased with their performances but there’s more there. There’s definitely more.”
Carr was delighted with the win over St Kiernans, TCG’s third landslide championship win in succession. Their only close encounter to date has been the opening round win over Fulham Irish. The other three have been won by an average of 17 points.
“That was very pleasing,” Carr said. “We tell these guys that it’s all about getting the things that are within our control right. They’ve worked very hard and there’s a great bond between them.
“We haven’t had as many matches as we would have liked and I think we weren’t sure of the full potential in our team. That game was very encouraging. We started moving the ball at pace, taking intelligent options, and our score-taking was very impressive.
“All in all it’s everything that we would have hoped for, and we still think there’s more in the team. We’re certainly in a good position. We’re looking forward to the final, but at the same time there wouldn’t be any sort of complacency there.”
Despite the game being over as a contest inside 40 minutes, Carr was delighted that his side displayed a ruthless edge, continuing to push forward and racking up the scores.
“That’s something we’ve been looking at, because in some of our previous championship games we’ve tended to go sleep for parts,” he said. “It’s as much about getting the mindset right as getting the skillset right.
“We’ll keep the ball rolling down in Greenford. It’s always hard to get into a county final. We’ve huge respect for Kingdom Kerry Gaels. We’ll get ourselves right and look forward to what will hopefully be a great day in a couple of weeks.”