Liam Kearns doesn’t expect semi-final sledging from Mayo

Tipperary boss Liam Kearns doesn’t expect All-Ireland semi-final opponents Mayo to engage in sledging when the sides clash on Sunday week.

Tyrone manager Mickey Harte claimed Sean Cavanagh was provoked prior to his dismissal in Saturday’s All-Ireland quarter-final against Mayo, but Kearns revealed he is a fan of Mayo’s “manly” style and doesn’t believe they will resort to the dark arts the weekend after next.

“I don’t expect Mayo to start sledging,” he said. 

“I would be an admirer of Mayo’s football and the way they play football. I think they play a manly game, they’re physical, but I don’t expect that sledging will come into it. 

“Maybe in two weeks time, I’ll revise my opinion but that would be my opinion of them now. ”

Kearns also insisted his players, so far this summer, have escaped the off-the-ball cynicism that was rife during Saturday’s quarter-final double-header.

“The Cork game, no, absolutely not. Derry game, no. The Kerry game, no and the Galway game, no. 

“We haven’t, to be honest. We play the games on their merits and my players won’t be instigating [provocation], but yeah, we want to play football and we’ll play the opposition fairly and squarely.”

The Tipperary manager reported a clean bill of health.

“Ian Fahey should be in contention off the bench on Sunday week and Shane O’Connell, who came on as a sub in the Munster final, he got the boot off. He’d a stress fracture so he’s back in training.

“We’d 30 lads out on the pitch the other night and it’s great to see it.”

Kearns had no comment to make on the decision of local fixture-makers to expel four clubs from the West Tipperary IHC.

Football panellists from Rockwell Rovers, Golden- Kilfeacle, Arravale Rovers and Lattin-Cullen Gaels decided not to make themselves available to their clubs for games last weekend so to give themselves the best chance of preparing for the Mayo game, with each of the four clubs then refusing to play without these players.


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