Ryan: Hurling in Croker is what we want

Acceptance and defiance were the themes of TJ Ryan’s post-match conference.

Acceptance that he may have ran his players too heavy before the Munster final. Defiance against the perception of the team after losing to Cork.

While he acknowledged asking Wexford to play four weeks in a row wasn’t fair — “God, you’d want to be a machine” — he had a sense his charges were going to come out on top regardless.

“From our point of view, we had six weeks to prepare for a Munster final and I might have pushed the lads a bit too hard the week before the final.

“Looking back, did we do too much on the week of the match? But look, I felt at the time the match would bring us on. I was happy coming into today.”

What he wasn’t so content with was how Limerick’s defeat to Cork was described in the press.

“I wasn’t overly happy with some of the stuff that a lot of ye guys wrote over the couple of days about us, but that’s a story for another day.”

Asked to elaborate on what upset him, Ryan said: “I saw something in one of the dailies yesterday where it was, basically a typical Limerick performance in the Munster final. I don’t know what that was about but that’s for another day. Today is a good day for Limerick hurling — we showed a bit of consistency as well. We were in an All-Ireland semi-final last year, we’re back there again this year. It’s a good week for Limerick hurling after the minor team won the Munster championship.”

Ryan accepted Limerick, with 16 wides, weren’t as clinical as they could have been but he wasn’t overly negative.

“I had hoped that the game in the Munster final was going to bring us on. I was happy with that. No matter how you go in training, it’s difficult and that match hardness which people speak about had to stand to us. I had hoped there was a better performance in us today but in fairness, I have to say it is difficult.”

Captain Donal O’Grady could have seen some action but it was decided his calf injury wouldn’t be risked.

Ryan played down the head injuries sustained by Declan Hannon, Richie McCarthy and Tom Condon.

“It looked like they’re all cut – a few stitches required but a few stitches in an All-Ireland quarter-final and heading into a semi-final in Croke Park would never bother you.”


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