Wexford manager Davy Fitzgerald said he is “shocked” and “disappointed” at Brian Cody’s insinuation that one of his players tried to influence the referee to get Kilkenny players sent off in Saturday’s Bord na Móna Walsh Cup final.
Following the sending off of Richie Reid, Kilkenny boss Cody was sent to the stands following a verbal altercation with a linesman.
Afterwards, he hit out at a Wexford player “roaring and bawling to the referee about his helmet”.
“One of our players got sent off and I merely said to the linesman that he was being mauled and dragged, which he was, and then he said. ‘I’ll put you off the field’ and I said, ‘You won’t put me out of the field’,” said Cody.
“Then he put up his flag and somebody else may have roared something. That’s as much as I said. That’s the way it went. The same thing happened last year in a game where a fella was sent off for supposedly pulling the helmet off a player which then they said later on he didn’t do at all.
“Very disappointing when a player starts roaring and bawling about his helmet and showing his helmet to everybody and a player is sent off completely in the wrong.”
Fitzgerald yesterday admitted that he was stunned by the Kilkenny manager’s comments.
“I am just very surprised at Brian’s attitude afterwards, very surprised. I could say a lot but I am not going to go on,” said Fitzgerald.
“It often happens (that we get upset) believe it or not. I am a bit disappointed in the way he was.
“He hasn’t lost that often in the last 15 or 20 years. I am a bit disappointed and I don’t think there is any need for that. But he has to say what he has to say. Who am I to tell him what to say or not to say?”
After their victory over Kilkenny in last year’s national league quarter-final and the summer’s Leinster championship semi-final, last Saturday free-taking competition triumph was Wexford’s third success in a row against Kilkenny.
The sides will meet again in the last round of Division 1A games in March at Nowlan Park, while the provincial championship has also pitted the pair together.
Fitzgerald, speaking after the Fitzgibbon Cup tie yesterday between his Limerick IT side and DCU in Limerick, insisted that the Kilkenny player deserved a red card for the offence and that his team know they cannot interfere with another players’ helmet.
“I thought it was a good, honest, hard game the other day. I will just put it to you this way, I have been on the receiving ends of helmet pulling and had two or three lads sent off in my time as manager. Naturally you are frustrated but that has happened to all of us.
“That’s what happens. If you pull a helmet you are going to get done. Back when I was manager of Clare it happened twice and we got sent-off twice.”
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