Containing Jake Morris
Cork half-back Ger Millerick was outstanding in shadowing the Tipperary senior star on the evening of the Munster U20 final, but such is Morris’s precocious talent, that he was able to mine 1-1 from play, including the game-winning goal, on the few occasions he slipped free from Millerick’s grasp.
The Nenagh Éire Óg forward won’t be lacking confidence at the LIT Gaelic Grounds, a venue where he scooped the All-Ireland U21 final man of the match award 12 months ago.
Millerick and Cork simply must shut Morris down if they’re to reverse last year’s result. And even if Morris is moved into the inside line as the game progresses, expect Millerick to follow him wherever he goes.
The role of Brian Turnbull
Though it passed largely unnoticed, Brian Turnbull was a largely subdued figure during that incident-packed Munster final.
For whatever reason, the pacy Douglas corner-forward simply could not weave his influence on proceedings.
He still finished with two points (he hit four against both Limerick and Clare in the earlier rounds) but he failed to reach his usual threat level. Tipperary captain Craig Morgan more than held his own in their Munster final duel and expect the Kilruane MacDonaghs defender to once again be detailed onto a forward who hit 1-4 from play in the All-Ireland minor final two years ago.
Tipperary were in trouble in this department until Jerome Cahill was redeployed to midfield and Cork’s dominance of this sector began to wane. Cahill, a member of Liam Sheedy’s senior panel, struck 2-1 from centre-forward during their semi-final annihilation of Wexford but has been selected at midfield for this evening’s fixture, a clear move by the Premier management to ensure Cork do not get an early foothold. Tommy O’Connell is named at midfield for Cork, but is likely to operate from half-forward, with Daire Connery coming in the opposite direction. Full-back James Keating spoke for the entire Cork defence when he said the Tipperary half-back line came out with the ball too easily in last month’s meeting. That has to be rectified here if Cork are to avenge that defeat.