Cork Minor hurlers unfazedby new format

Cork’s latest batch of minor hurlers won’t be fazed by the new structure of the provincial championship.

The system of recent years, whereby counties who lost their opening game were afforded a second chance, has been replaced by a round-robin model that mirrors the new senior format.

“Last year, it was week-on-week, too, but the Munster [U17] championship was over by this stage, we went April 11, April 18 and April 25,” said manager John Considine, who successfully oversaw the U17s in 2017.

“It’ll be a new experience, definitely. It’s Sunday, Sunday, Saturday, then a break and Sunday again. A lot of it is going into the unknown. Over the five weeks, you’ll quickly learn what works and what doesn’t.

“It probably won’t be as big a shock as you might think. For the seniors, they’re going into something new, having experienced a different format for the last number of years, but for these minor lads, it’s not as if they know anything else.”

This is Considine’s third stint in the role, his first spell in charge ending with All-Ireland glory back in 2000.

The Cork manager is a firm supporter of the decision to move the early rounds of the Munster MHC from midweek to acting as curtain-raisers to the senior games. In terms of player development, it has to be a huge positive to be giving guys access to this. It’s a great move. By the start of the second half, you’re playing in front of 15 or 20,000 people and by the end of the game, the ground is nearly full. Once you do that a couple of times, it’s not such a big deal to you anymore. Being able to play two games in Páirc Uí Chaoimh and two in Thurles will bring these players on a heap.”

CORK (Munster MHC v Clare): C Long (Glen Rovers); C Murphy (Midleton), P Cullinane (Ballinascarthy), C O’Donovan (Sarsfields); C O’Brien (Newtownshandrum), L Horgan (Glen Rovers), C O’Donovan (Douglas); O Broderick (Killeagh), P Cooney (Ballincollig); K Moynihan (Na Piarsaigh), S Barrett (Blarney), D Hogan (Sarsfields); P Power (Blarney), P O’Flynn (Bride Rovers), E Murphy (Glen Rovers).

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