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'It's nearly sad that we got beat by 13 points and Waterford people are half-happy'

Ken McGrath says the Déise are ‘under a bit of pressure’ after shipping another defeat in the Munster SHC.

Ken McGrath was speaking after Waterford suffered their fourth defeat of the Munster SHC.
Ken McGrath was speaking after Waterford suffered their fourth defeat of the Munster SHC.

WATERFORD LEGEND KEN McGrath says it’s “nearly a bit sad” that people from the Déise seem “half-happy” despite shipping a 13-point defeat to Cork in the Munster SHC.

Páraic Fanning’s side continued to struggle in the competition over the weekend, shipping their fourth defeat in as many games.

Speaking after the loss to the defending provincial champions, McGrath remarked that people in the county seemed to be satisfied with the “pride” that was shown by the players.

But he added that the expectations in Waterford should be higher.

“It’s strange,” he said on the Sunday Game.

“You hear people saying ‘at least the team showed pride and a bit of heart.’ But that should be a given when you put on the Waterford jersey.

I think it’s nearly a bit sad that we got beat by 13 points and people are half-happy down in Waterford that we had 100% commitment, which the boys did show. That should be a given every day you put on that jersey.

“This isn’t all Páraic Fanning’s fault by any means. We’ve won four out of 20 Munster championship games in the last nine years. If that happened in Tipperary or Cork there’d be uproar.

“We loved playing Cork and you’re going up and getting beat by 13 points and you’re kind of like ‘I don’t know where we are.’”

McGrath went on to state that Waterford’s problems extend to underage level too, and while he says he’s not calling for a change of management, he stresses that addressing structures could be the key to unlocking their potential again. 

“I just can’t see it changing very fast. We’re winning very little games at underage. We didn’t win a game at minor again this year, I think it’s two wins since we last won minor in 2013.

“We’re under a bit of pressure big time and something needs to happen. I’m not talking about a change of management.

I’m talking about structures at underage and find out where it’s going wrong – how are we not getting the quality player that will make a difference at inter-county level?

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“That’s the big question really [and] how are we going to get that back? Right now we’re averaging a loss of around 13 points in the championship this year. I think our average loss last year was eight points.

“This is happening going back a few years as well. There’s a perception out there that we were very successful the last 10 years [but] we haven’t won a Munster championship since 2010 so I don’t know where the success is.”

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