Following Kilkenny’s phenomenal performance against Tipperary in last weekend’s All-Ireland senior hurling semi-final, one could forgive their opposition for perhaps becoming slightly distracted from their own preparations.
However, according to Galway star forward Joe Canning, this is not the case.
Speaking to the Irish Daily Star at a press conference ahead of this Saturday’s Bord Gais Energy All-Ireland u21 semi-finals, the influential sharpshooter admitted that his teammates are more concerned with getting their own performance right in next month’s final.
“This thing about trying to counteract Kilkenny, I don’t believe in it,” the Portumna man said. “We have to concentrate on ourselves. Bring our style of play to the game and hopefully that will be good enough. That’s all we’re concentrating on.”
The upcoming All-Ireland final between the Cats and Galway will be a rematch of their Leinster final battle, in which the Tribesmen recorded a shock win following their stunning performance.
Following their huge win over Kilkenny in early July, Galway then defeated Cork in their recent semi-final clash in what was another physical encounter, with late scores from Canning and Damien Hayes securing another strong win for the Connacht men.
Canning, who also starred for LIT during last year’s Fitzgibbon Cup, with the free-taker simply outstanding throughout, until he suffered a shoulder injury which curtailed his side’s title aspirations.
“We can’t be worried about what other teams are going to do,” Canning said. “There’s a thing all year that we do our work on the training field and we’ll see how it goes on the day of matches.”
“We’ll have our tactics and they’ll have theirs and I don’t think it’s going to change much from any other game. Obviously, they’ll want to implement theirs on us, and likewise with ours on them. It’s whatever team gets the breaks then and the bit of luck that will win,” he finished.
Meanwhile, Westmeath’s Barry Kelly has been chosen to officiate the upcoming All-Ireland hurling final for the third year, having previously been in charge of both the 2006 and 2008 senior finals.