What they said ... the weekend in quotes

November 12, 2018

Cushendall's Arron Graffin is carried on a stretcher by his teammates Mark Donaghy and Stephen Walsh after the Ulster club SHC final victory over Ballycran at the Athletic Grounds. ©INPHO/Declan Roughan.

“We’re delighted with the performance. The last few weeks we have been out five of seven weeks and we’d a tough county semi-final and then into the final as well.”

The manner in which reigning Connacht and All-Ireland champions Corofin disposed of Clann na nGael pleased manager Kevin O’Brien.

“I’d be lying if I said Colm is happy coming on, of course not. The same with Jordan Kiely, Michael Potts and all these fellas. The reason Colm is not starting is because Colm was sick against An Ghaeltacht and Tony Brosnan came in for him and kicked 1-14, so that’s the way it is.”

Competition for a place on the Dr Croke’s starting 15 is intense and selector Edmund O’Sullivan explained why Colm Cooper has to be content with a place on the bench.

“They are in with a good shout. You need luck along the way. If they stay injury-free and keep at it over the Christmas, because there is a long break there of eight or nine weeks, which is baffling in a sense. A lot can happen in that space of time. If they are not there or thereabouts at the end of it, I'd be amazed.”

Defeated St Finbarr’s manager Ray Keane was impressed with what he witnessed from the Killarney outfit.

“They’re virtually unstoppable at the moment in Munster, we know that, but we’re delighted to be in with a shout.”

Mike Neylon and Miltown-Malbay face a difficult assignment against the Kingdom standard bearers in their first provincial final appearance.

“We have not always done ourselves justice on the All-Ireland stage and now we are getting the chance to show ourselves in the best possible light.”

Cushendall captain Paddy Burke and his team-mates aren’t content with an Ulster Club SHC success.

“We were playing the Leinster champions so we wanted to hit them hard and notch up as many scores as possible.”

Portlaoise boss Malachy McNulty masterminded the downfall of holders Moorefield and now turn their attention to Kilmacud Crokes.

“What he has done with Dublin he has carried in with his club form, which you don’t always get. So he’s a massive plus for us, a massive plus.”

Kilmacud Crokes joint-manager Robbie Brennan was full of praise for All-Star Paul Mannion following his 2-6 haul against St Peter’s, Dunboyne.

“I have to say, we looked at ourselves in that dressing-room after the game and I think, to a man, we probably didn’t turn up.”

Dunboyne manager Ciaron Byrne couldn’t put his finger on what went wrong for his troops.

“We played them last year in the Leinster championship in Longford and it was a tough, physical battle and we will expect nothing less from them.”

Mickey Graham and Mullinalaghta will renew acquaintances with Eire Og of Carlow with a place in this year’s Leinster Club SFC decider up for grabs.

“I’ve had a good run at the football as well, quite a lot of football. It was probably a change for me when I had to go back to the hurling. Now I have to make the change back again but management set-ups, coaching, preparation, working with counties, with clubs and all that, is very similar.”

Newly appointed Roscommon senior football manager Anthony Cunningham is swapping codes for 2019.

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