Eoin Larkin admits he found it difficult to catch up with his Kilkenny preparations after returning from a tour of duty with the Defence Forces.
Larkin, who was dropped for Sunday’s All-Ireland semi-final, came off the bench and sent over a point as Kilkenny fought back against Waterford.
However, the James Stephens man, 32, says he’s only now coming to terms with what is expected of him after coming back from Syria following the league.
“It’s after taking me a while but 15 can only start on any given day and I was happy enough to get a few minutes. I’ll be here for a while now, thank God.
“It was tough coming into it because it was so fast-paced.
“I was just delighted to get on for a few minutes and help the team out a small bit.”
Larkin insisted the ferocity of Waterford’s display didn’t surprise them.
“We knew coming up it was going to be a savage battle. Waterford are after improving hugely since last year.
“I think the Munster final was probably a blip and they were off form.
“But they are a savage team and we knew we were in for a savage battle.
“I don’t think we got going the way we wanted to get going — but full credit to Waterford they were exceptional on the day.”
Larkin, though, took plenty of encouragement from the manner in which Kilkenny wrestled their way back to equalise with Walter Walsh’s goal and then Conor Fogarty’s point.
“The goal was crucial obviously but we kept plugging away and we kept tipping over points and kept in touch for as long as we could.
“The goal really brought us back into it, they had a couple of chances after that to maybe win it but overall we’ll take the draw.”
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