Dublin: 11°C Wednesday 18 May 2022

'This is hurting but this is sport' - Regret for Stacks after Munster football decider

Wayne Quillinan praised his players after the Kerry club lost out in yesterday’s provincial decider.

Enda Dennehy scores St Finbarr's second goal of the game.
Enda Dennehy scores St Finbarr's second goal of the game.
Image: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

IT HAS BEEN a campaign of progress and success for Austin Stacks but yesterday brought an interruption to that forward movement.

After collecting Kerry silverware for their club and county championship efforts, they sought to add a Munster title to their honours list.

A below-par first-half showing ultimately proved costly as they were held off in a frantic finale by a stronger St Finbarr’s outfit.

“My first reaction is pride,” said Stacks manager Wayne Quillinan.

“We went in at half-time and literally hadn’t burned a ball. We were probably the poorest we had been all year and there were a few choice words at half-time and the lads came out and battled.

“We said win the third quarter and they did that. We didn’t get a break or two then going into the last quarter but we have to look back on our season and be proud of it. The thing we were disappointed with in the first half was the one-on-one battles. Physically, they were coming out of them better than we were and that’s something we have worked on and for some reason we just weren’t on it in the first half today but we rectified it in the second half.”

austin-stacks-players-stand-for-a-minute-silence-in-memory-of-ashling-murphy Austin Stacks players before the game. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

The pain of defeat was apparent but Quillinan sought to appraise the season overall.

“This is hurting but this is sport. You have to endure it when you have these bad days. If you stick with it you will get good days and 5 December was a great day for us and we are after winning 12 games in a row but unfortunately we didn’t come through today but we have to look at ourselves and be proud.

“I just said to the lads that we have set ourselves a standard and a cultural environment that we can only be proud of. Yes, it’s going to hurt an awful lot for the next while but we’ll take a breather from it and come back and regroup and keep to those standards.

“We died with our boots on, we fought to the bitter end and that’s all you can ask of players. No matter what, be resilient, be relentless. That’s how I’ve matured as a manager. I know these days will come, it’s just sport. That team has grown up and I have grown up as a manager. We need to take a breath of fresh air, regroup, stick to our standards and go again.”


Get closer to the stories that matter with exclusive analysis, insight and debate in The42 Membership.

Become a Member

kieran-donaghy-during-the-game Kieran Donaghy during the game. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

Quillinan also praised veteran forward Kieran Donaghy as their involvement drew to a close.

“Kieran owes nothing to anyone and that was before the start of this year or the year before. Kieran, inspirational is not a word you could use with Kieran because he’s more than that. He’s one of my best mates, he’s just an inspirational person. The sport comes with it but he’s such a great guy.

“Whatever decision he makes, he owes us absolutely nothing. If anything we owe him so so much because he has created unbelievable memories for Stacks people and lifted them to places a lot of people didn’t believe we could go to. We didn’t get over the line today but we’ll look back on 2021 with a bit of a smile and Kieran has been a huge part of that.”


About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

Read next:


This is YOUR comments community. Stay civil, stay constructive, stay on topic. Please familiarise yourself with our comments policy here before taking part.
write a comment

    Leave a commentcancel