Canty issues Rebel caution

Recent close calls against Limerick will ensure Cork are not complacent ahead of Saturday’s Munster SFC quarter-final, according to captain Graham Canty.

Canty issues Rebel caution

In the counties’ last meeting, a qualifier in 2010, Cork needed extra time to get past the Shannonsiders en route to winning the All-Ireland, while Daniel Goulding inspired a comeback in the 2009 Munster final.

The previous year, Conor Counihan’s first championship game in charge of Cork looked destined for an upset before Canty’s late goal helped the Rebels to escape the Gaelic Grounds with a win.

Recalling past encounters, the Bantry man acknowledges that Limerick have made things difficult.

“For about 30 seconds of the 2008 game I have happy memories, for the other 72 minutes or whatever, we were under a bit of pressure,” he said.

“That’s just typical of the way that it has gone, we have played Limerick in three or four of the last five years and, especially in the Gaelic Grounds, we have had some very tough battles.

“I think that’s down to Limerick, they don’t allow you to play well. It’s not just a case of saying ‘we don’t play well’, you have to give credit to them for turning up and putting in a performance.”

A stint at midfield during this year’s Allianz Football League campaign has coincided with an injury-free run for Canty. While obviously welcoming that, he takes a philosophical view regarding previous setbacks.

“I’ve a nice bit of football under my belt heading into the championship, which is always good,” he said.

“Before last year I had two or three years that were interrupted by injury, but, touch wood, things have been ok this year. It can be frustrating, but I’ve had a fairly decent long intercounty career and I might have picked up a few injuries along the way but I’m still playing 10 years later. I think I’m fortunate that way.”

Canty, who turns 33 in July, is in his 13th year on the Cork panel. Evaluating the player he is now compared to the one who came into the squad under Larry Tompkins is not an exercise he ever indulges in, however.

“I don’t really think about it,” he said.

“I wouldn’t even think of the type of player I am now compared to last year, I just live for every year.

“You take it year by year, next year is next year, there’s no point thinking about that, and last year is gone.

“You just try to learn a couple of lessons if you can and move on.”

Lessons have been administered to Cork by Mayo and Donegal in the last two years as they have failed to add to the 2010 All-Ireland.

Criticism from outside the squad is never in short supply, but Canty is keen to point out that the internal standards are set highly.

“As a bunch of players, we put a lot of pressure on ourselves as well,” he said. “While you’re in there, you’re very lucky and privileged to have a Cork jersey on your back. You owe a lot of people outside the camp an awful lot, people who put a lot of work into you in the club, at underage especially. There are people who have put effort into you, so you’re conscious of that and because of that you put more pressure on yourself to perform, no matter what year it is. Whether it’s your first year on the panel or your last year, you put that pressure on yourself.”

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