John Kiely not happy with 'inconsistent' treatment of first-half incidents

Limerick manager John Kiely was aggrieved that Conor Lehane wasn’t punished after he claimed Richie English’s ribs were left seriously bruised following a first-half incident involving the pair.

Limerick manager John Kiely. Photo: ©INPHO/James Crombie

After Aaron Gillane was sent off for lashing out at Seán O’Donoghue who was booked, Lehane and English were embroiled in an off-the-ball altercation but James Owens chose not to book either, only speak to them.

Kiely, who didn’t see the Gillane strikes, said: “Just seemed very strange situation for two players to get booked in the same situation and for one to get the red card and one to get the yellow. That seems rather odd.

“We had a situation at the other end of the field where our player Richie English and I can tell you, I feel like issuing a photograph of the state of his rib cage after what was done.

"It was worse than what happened at the other end of the field, I can assure you that. There was no card issued in that situation so it was inconsistent.

“I know that lads have a tough job refereeing the games. It is very difficult. There's a lot happening, you've to get up and down the field but I just think what's good for the goose is good for the gander.

"But listen, at the end of the day, we're not looking for players to be sent off on either side. We want all the players on the field for as long as possible.

“I just think the first situation could have been dealt with more common sense. It shouldn't be the story of the day, that sending off.

"The story of the day is the manner of our performance in the second half where we were down to 14 men and we still looked like we'd 15 men on the field. That's the difference.”

Limerick manager John Kiely and Cork manager John Meyler. Photo: ©INPHO/James Crombie

Cork manager John Meyler felt the dismissal didn’t have the desired effect on the game from a Cork perspective.

“The whole shape of the game changed. We would have preferred a more structured game but it became looser. Limerick played good hurling but it was an exciting game, really.”

Meyler counted himself satisfied with Cork’s return from their opening three matches. “I'm perfectly happy sitting here with four points. We're unbeaten and that's how we look at it. We came unstuck midway through the second half today and Limerick got three points ahead of us and in fairness they played really well for that period.

“But for us to come back with three points there at the end and show fantastic character and we showed that last week against Tipperary as well. Playing three games in 13 days was hard but the lads really rose to the occasion in the last five or 10 minutes.”

Kiely was thrilled with his team’s performance: “Pride, I suppose, is the probably the most overriding feeling that I have. Very proud of our players and the manner in which they saw out the whole game. Showed huge composure and saw out the game in a way I was very, very proud of because they just never panicked even though they fell behind a few times.”

Anthony Nash said the setting sun that Cork faced into the City End in the second half didn’t upset them.

“I wouldn't say it was massive - it wasn't there in the first half. It didn't affect any of the defenders or anything like that. I don't think it was a massive influence on the game, to be honest, but ideally you prefer if it wasn't there. I'd say it was affecting the Limerick forwards as much as our defenders.”

Kiely wouldn’t be drawn on the nature of Limerick captain Declan Hannon’s early injury, which appeared to have flared up during the warm-up.


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