Forbes pays tribute to Tipperary following substitution saga conclusion

THE relief in Cork was palpable after the GAC of the Munster Council confirmed the Leesiders as provincial senior football champions for 2002.

County Board vice-chairman Jim Forbes said there was tremendous relief within the county and among the team and management at the outcome.

“It has been a difficult 48 hours for all concerned not knowing if we were Munster champions or not,” he said.

“Thankfully it all worked out well in the end and we can now concentrate on preparing for the All Ireland quarter-final on Sunday week.

“I’m particularly pleased for the team, for Larry Tompkins and his fellow selectors. They were under pressure since Sunday not knowing who they were to play next.

“There was never any doubt in Cork’s mind that we had done nothing illegal and that we would be proved correct. It is obvious there’s a loophole in the rule governing the blood substitution which will have to be closed.

“Presumably the authorities will move to do so quickly as there is still a lot of football to be played before this year’s championship is completed.

“I would like to play a particular tribute to Tipperary for their outstanding sportsmanship throughout the whole affair. We may the greatest rivals on the field, but off it there is a tremendous bond of friendship between the two counties and their attitude to the unfortunate incident has been exemplary.

“I would also like to pay tribute to our own Runai Frank Murphy who conducted Cork’s case in a highly efficient and effective manner at Tuesday night’s GAC meeting.”

Meanwhile the Cork minor hurling selectors have made three changes from the team which lost the Munster final to Tipperary, for Sunday’s All Ireland quarter-final clash with Galway in Croke Park.

Brian Smiddy, Maurice O’Sullivan and Pat Fitzgerald replace Brendan Ring, Seamus Stack and Colin O’Reilly. The selectors have moved Kevin Hartnett to midfield where he will partner Smiddy, which proved highly successful in last year’s final.

Galway include four of last year’s team which lost to Cork in the final, Joe Gantley , Cathal Dervan, Brendan Lucas and Kevin Brisco who was a second half substitute.

CORK (MH v Galway): S. Bowen (Erins Own); D. Murphy (Courcey Rovers), B. Lane (Mallow), PJ Copse (Charleville); R. Relihan (Castletownroche), M. Naughton (Cloyne), B. Clifford (Lisgoold); K. Hartnett (Russell Rovers), B. Smiddy (Castlemartyr); P. Fitzgerald (Erins Own), S. O’Sullivan (Na Piarsaigh), M. O’Sullivan (Ballyhea); B. Barry (Killeagh), G. O’Loughlin (Sarsfields), R. Butler (Valley Rovers). Subs. A. Nash (Kanturk), E. Condon (Harbour Rovers), D. McSweeney (Blarney), M. Harrington (Douglas), S. Stack (Buttevant), B. Ring (Youghal), C. O’Reilly (Blackrock), R. Foley (Delanys), B. Coleman (Ballyhea), M. Aherne (Ballinhassig).

GALWAY (MH v Cork): A. Ryan (Craughwell); D. Collins (Liam Mellowes), A. Gaynor (Mullagh), J. Farrell (Craughwell); P. Flynn (Tommie Larkins), A. Garvey (do.), K. Brisco (Mullagh); I. Tannin (RAdrahan), N. Callinan (Craughwell); J. Gantley (Beagh), C. Dervan (Mullagh), B. Lucas (Meelick-Eyrecourt); N. Healy (Craughwell), A. Callinan (Liam Mellowes) K. Burke (St. Thomas); Subs. E. Fox (Moycullen), K. Huban (Tommie Larkins), D. Kelly (do.), T. Linnane (Gort), B. Costello (Abbeyknockmoy), D. Garvey (Tommie Larkins), D. Reilly (Loughrea), D. Reilly (Mullagh), D. Kennedy (Ardrahan), G. Bermingham (Craughwell).

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