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Why were some Cork hurlers over an hour late for match against Clare in February?

Stephen Moylan and Conor O’Sullivan on their bizarre preparation for the Waterford Crystal Cup clash.

The Cork hurlers
The Cork hurlers
Image: INPHO/Mike Shaughnessy

THE CORK HURLERS are set to face Clare in Sunday’s eagerly-awaited Munster senior semi-final.

The match takes place in the Gaelic Grounds and recent experiences are likely to ensure the Rebels leave in plenty of time before throw-in.

On February 1st, Cork faced a trip to Sixmilebridge to play Clare in the semi-final of the Waterford Crystal Cup with the Banner winning out by 0-20 to 2-11.

Yet Cork’s preparations for the game were hardly ideal on that Friday night.

A massive fuel spill on the M18 Limerick-Galway road caused a huge traffic jam from just beyond the toll plaza in Limerick.

The game’s throw-in time was put back from its intended slot of 7.45pm to 8.15pm and then subsequently to 8.30pm.

But even then some Cork hurlers did not manage to make the game before the start and only arrived at half-time.

Attacker Stephen Moylan and defender Conor O’Sullivan take up the story.

Stephen Moylan:

“It was definitely the weirdest preparation. We were on the motorway and we came out of the tunnel in Limerick and it was like something from ‘Chris Rea, Driving Home For Christmas’, there was cars everywhere. We couldn’t believe it.

“As we arrived at half-time, it was like something from underage just running onto the pitch. There was mad phone calls between Stephen McDonnell and Seanie McGrath but once we got there then we had to drive on.

Conor O’Sullivan:

“Myself, Cian Mac (McCarthy), Stephen Moylan, Daniel Kearney and Stephen McDonnell were caught in traffic. It was a disaster, got out of the car stiff and straight on at half-time. I got a bit of a run about that night.

“Togging out in the boot of the car was all we were short! We had such a laugh in the car on the way up it nearly made up for it! It was funny – you had to see the funny side of it.”

Conor O’Sullivan
Pic: INPHO/James Crombie

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About the author:

Fintan O'Toole

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