Club campaign takes priority for Nemo’s Cork contingent

Nemo Rangers’ Cork players may end up not playing a Division 2 game but Barry O’Driscoll only has eyes on Slaughtneil on Saturday week.

Win their All-Ireland semi-final and the likes of O’Driscoll, Luke Connolly, Stephen Cronin, and Paul Kerrigan would only be available to Ronan McCarthy for the final round of the league on March 25.

But soon after beating Dr Crokes at the end of November, the decision was made for them to focus squarely on their club commitments.

“We discussed that with our own management in the club,” said O’Driscoll, “and it was just a case of the priority right now is the club championship and that’s the focus.

“It was snuffed out early on and it wasn’t let linger into January and we knew what we were doing, so at least on that side it was looked after.”

That being said, O’Driscoll would support the calendar year season even if the wet and cold month of December would then be populated with significant club games.

“I would (back it) but I wouldn’t like to be the guy making the decisions as to when those games would happen, because if it was to happen in a calendar year when are you playing in the (All-Ireland) club final? Probably when the pitches are at their worst.

“It would obviously make more sense because we’ll be two months into the new year before we play the semi-final, which doesn’t make all the sense in the world but it’s just the way it is.”

O’Driscoll warmed up for the clash against the Ulster champions in Portlaoise with a goal away to Mallow in Nemo’s Kelleher Shield league game on Friday, making it two victories out of two in the competition.

“We fulfilled two fixtures in this year’s league so we have them out of the way now.

“We had a decent performance. It was a cold night in Mallow and we got what we got out of the game.”

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