O’Leary, half-back on the 2010 All-Ireland winning Cork team, is one of four selectors working under Herlihy, while Quirke, another member of that 2010 side, has assumed the role of goalkeeping coach.
Herlihy has cited the pair’s involvement as invaluable, also stressing the importance of keeping recently retired players involved at some level within the Cork set-up.
A third member of the 2010 team, Paudie Kissane, was initially part of the minor management ticket when the appointments were made last August, but the Clyda Rovers native has since joined Peadar Healy’s senior backroom team.
“I have to say something four times before it gets through to the players, they only need say it once,” said Herlihy of O’Leary and Quirke’s impact. “These are, after all, footballers that the lads would have grown up watching.
“Michael Comyns, Donal McCarthy, and Bernie Collins are also involved and it is great to be surrounded by excellent Cork football people. It is great to see the next generation coming through and getting involved on the sideline. These lads instantly command the respect of the players. These lads are future managers.”
With only one survivor from last year’s panel, Nathan Walsh, Herlihy accepts his side will be hard-pressed to successfully negotiate the challenge of last year’s beaten All-Ireland finalists. The Dohenys clubman, though, hasn’t been working off an entirely blank canvas this spring having been involved with this team over the past number of years at development squad level.
“I have been with them since they were 14 and have stayed with them right the way through. Donal McCarthy was with me last year. It doesn’t necessarily mean you are working with the exact same bunch of players each year, but definitely, the core of the side hasn’t changed much over the years. The development squads are a great asset to Cork GAA. Inter-county minor is different from development squads, but the development squads do, and absolutely should, give you a headstart.”
He added: “Tipperary got to last year’s All-Ireland minor final and so should have a few survivors from that. The days of taking Tipperary for granted are gone, long gone. Neither can we afford to take them for granted. For the majority of lads, this will be their first inter-county championship match and if the net result of us taking Tipperary for granted is that we are chasing the game after 10 minutes, then we could be in big trouble.
“In terms of preparation, we played Dublin in Parnell Park and drew with them. We played Kildare and Wexford, as well. These games gave the lads a good grounding as none of them had been exposed to this level before. The games brought home to the lads the step up in intensity and workrate that comes with playing inter-county football at minor level.”
M White (Clonakilty); D Scannell (Ahan Gaels/St. Marys), A McCarthy (St Finbarrs), L O’Donovan (Clonakilty); T Corkery (Cill na Martra), N Walsh (Douglas), J McCarthy (Carrigaline); J Ryan (Sliabh Rua/Ballymartle), C Foley (WesternGaels/Kilmichael); B O’Gorman (Macroom), C O’Callaghan (Eire Og), C Maguire (Castlehaven); D Gore (Kilmacabea), K O’Donovan (Nemo Rangers), M Buckley (Sam Maguires/Dohenys).
K McMahon (Kilshannig), R O’Driscoll (Garnish), G O’Donoghue (Ballincollig), S Ryan (Ballinascarthy), S O’Sullivan (Mitchelstown), S O’Driscoll (Glanmire), S Minihane (Ilen Rovers), L Finn (Mitchelstown), S Dennehy (St Finbarrs).
Anthony Barrett (Bruff), Gearoid Brennan (Claughaun), Noel Callinan (St Kierans), Luke Cardy (Adare), Eoghan Carew (Monaleen), Robert Childs (Galtee Gaels), Oran Collins (Adare), Dylan Corrigan (Kildimo-Pallaskenry), Daniel Enright (Monaleen), Seamus Hurley (Newcastle West), Adam Kearns (St Senans), Diarmaid Kelly (Newcastle West), James Kelly (Monaleen), Jason Kiely (Claughaun), Ciaran Laffey (Mungret), Tadgh Leddan (Hospital-Herbertstown), Colm McSweeney (Gearld Griffins), Padraig McGrath (Galtee Gaels), Aaron Murphy (Fr Caseys), Fionn Murphy (Kilteely-Dromkeen), Dara O’Farrell (Croom), Eoin O’Mahoney (Ballylanders), William O’Mahony (Oola), Evan O’Donoghue (Ballysteen), Conor O’Grady (Hospital-Herbertstown), Darragh Ranahan (Ballysteen), James Ryan (Athea), Sean Ryan (Athea), Josh Ryan (Oola), Paudie Sheehy (Kilmallock), Conor Staff (Kildimo-Pallaskenry), Adam Storan (Mungret).
A Beresford (Ballinacourty); A O’Sullivan (Clashmore / Kinsalebeg), J Skehan (Sliabh gCua), J Mulcahy (The Nire); C Ó Cuirrín (An Rinn), D Guiry (The Nire), C Curran (Brickey Rangers); M Daly (Brickey Rangers), J Beresford (Ballinacourty); B Power (Rathgormack), S Martin (Tramore), T Barron (The Nire); C Kirwan (Kill), S O’Meara (The Nire), P Prendergast (Clashmore/ Kinsalebeg).
Jack Dolan (Fethard); Jack Harney (Moyle Rovers), Paudie Feehan (Killenaule), Jake Flannery (Galtee Rovers); Colin English (Fr. Sheehy’s), Daire Brennan (Kilsheelan-Kilcash), Stephen Nolan (Drom & Inch); Conor Cashman (Cahir), Ben Hyland (Fr. Sheehy’s); Ryan Lambe (Clonmel Commercials), Calvin Bolan (Clonmel Commercials), Daire Egan (Galtee Rovers); John Lyons (Grangemockler-Ballyneale), Michael Barlow (Ardfinnan), Adrian English (Ballyporeen).