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Kilkenny manager Brian Cody leaves the Croke Park pitch following a satisfying win over Cork at Croke Park.
Kilkenny manager Brian Cody leaves the Croke Park pitch following a satisfying win over Cork at Croke Park.

Brian Cody looking forward to Limerick challenge

By Cian O'Connell

A July 27 All Ireland SHC Semi-Final against Limerick is next on the agenda for Kilkenny with manager Brian Cody relishing the upcoming test.

During the past 12 months Limerick have claimed the All Ireland, Allianz League, and Munster titles so Cody is keen to see how Kilkenny fare at Croke Park following a hugely encouraging triumph over Cork.

"We’re in an All-Ireland Semi-Final and we’re very, very happy to be there but we’re acutely aware we’re playing the best team in the country," Cody says.

"They were the best team in the country last year because they won the All-Ireland final, but more so now because they followed it up by winning the League and their form the last day was exceptional. They’re everybody’s strong favourites to come out on top, not just the next day, but with eventual honours. It’s a terrific challenge for us."

Cody praised the manner in which Kilkenny fought back against a Patrick Horgan inspired Cork at GAA headquarters. "Without the application of everybody throughout the field it would have been very, very difficult," Cody acknowledged.

"What I will say that some of our players did have a tough enough time early on in particular, but showed real character and real resolve and real honesty and real genuineness not to just drop the head and just to keep going until the very, very end.

"They're serious, serious players, obviously we know that. But again, the application of our players right throughout the field and again the team, and obviously the panel and the players coming in off the bench, it's just a whole heroic effort from everybody."

Encouraged by the continued development of some young players, Cody was thrilled by the impact made by Kilkenny's substitutes.

"No doubt about it," Cody replied. "We always thought we're a panel and possibly some of the players didn't get enough game-time in other games. "But we're very, very acutely aware of the quality of the way we're playing in training and the form we've shown and the intent we had. It worked well for us for sure."

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