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2021 National Hurling League

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Replying To Richardkimble:  "I do agree with most of what you were saying about laois needing to get the structures right at under age level. All I am saying is that there was a huge improvement under Eddie Brennan beating Dublin in the championship and getting to a quater final against tipperary who went on to beat wexford with 14 men and absolutely destroy kilkenny in the final. Laois were very competitive against Tipp despite hurling the second half with 14 men and they were applauded off the field in Croke Park. The next year they only lost by a point to Clare in the qualifiers and this was with 4 vital players out. Brennan walked because of the road blocks put in front of him. With the covid starting to clear and supporters coming back to games if Eddie Brennan was backed he'd have put 5000 more supporters into ó Moore Park in every match that would be serious revenue. Now it's back to the bad old days and 20 point hamnerings on a regular basis."
Laois in 2019 were in a good place. Beat the Dubs, got promoted and gave Tipp plenty of it. I was hopeful they would kick on again but last year they were miles off. Dublin walloped them in Croker and Clare were down 6 or 7 lads and played with 14 for 40 mins and still won. Wexford, Dublin and Clare beat Laois handy this year and tbf all of those 3 are a good bit better than Laois. That said, Laois are better than their current form but they need everyone on board. Plus their style is woeful. Surprised at Cheddar.

To make a breakthrough you need everyone in behind you. Antrim are now a good case in point now. Hurling needs more teams are the top level. Laois, Antrim, Carlow, Westmeath, Kerry, Kildare, Down all have potential and id love to see Offaly back. With a bit of help from the top table, we could have a 16 team Liam MacCarthy competition in 10 years or so. The will is there but those counties need support. Locking some teams out of their own provincial championship was the pits for me. Whatever about grading the All Ireland series, but its a joke to tell Kerry go play in Leinster or tell Offaly or Carlow they cant play in their own championship. Farce.

I think counties in the west and northern part of the island need a lot more time and perhaps the numbers aren't there buy you have to admire hurling clubs in Mayo, Roscommon, Donegal. Serious hurling clubs like Four Roads, Burt, Toreen etc. Those people are true hurling diehards and need all the support they can get.

Flakeaway (Tipperary) - Posts: 12 - 31/05/2021 14:18:12    2346979

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Replying To Flakeaway:  "Laois in 2019 were in a good place. Beat the Dubs, got promoted and gave Tipp plenty of it. I was hopeful they would kick on again but last year they were miles off. Dublin walloped them in Croker and Clare were down 6 or 7 lads and played with 14 for 40 mins and still won. Wexford, Dublin and Clare beat Laois handy this year and tbf all of those 3 are a good bit better than Laois. That said, Laois are better than their current form but they need everyone on board. Plus their style is woeful. Surprised at Cheddar.

To make a breakthrough you need everyone in behind you. Antrim are now a good case in point now. Hurling needs more teams are the top level. Laois, Antrim, Carlow, Westmeath, Kerry, Kildare, Down all have potential and id love to see Offaly back. With a bit of help from the top table, we could have a 16 team Liam MacCarthy competition in 10 years or so. The will is there but those counties need support. Locking some teams out of their own provincial championship was the pits for me. Whatever about grading the All Ireland series, but its a joke to tell Kerry go play in Leinster or tell Offaly or Carlow they cant play in their own championship. Farce.

I think counties in the west and northern part of the island need a lot more time and perhaps the numbers aren't there buy you have to admire hurling clubs in Mayo, Roscommon, Donegal. Serious hurling clubs like Four Roads, Burt, Toreen etc. Those people are true hurling diehards and need all the support they can get."
Laois have always for some reason followed one good season with four or five inept ones.

johnocarroll17 (Limerick) - Posts: 157 - 31/05/2021 23:01:16    2347242

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Replying To johnocarroll17:  "Laois have always for some reason followed one good season with four or five inept ones."
Apparently they had a really good team in the early 80s just before my time going to games. But unfortunately Offaly were excellent at the time and Kilkenny are Kilkenny. They have 5 or 6 hurlers who are great the last few years and a handful of good hurlers to back these lads up but have struggled to get them all on the pitch for the county side at the same time for various reasons. They have a good few strong senior hurling clubs for 120 years they arent traditional minnows. Some money from GAA central funds spent on fulltime GPOs and fulltime coaches at underage would bring them on a long way. If they could get their senior club championship up to 12 clubs, which wouldn't be a great increase to make, they would have a better county team for sure. Their only AI is in hurling not football.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 1952 - 01/06/2021 12:30:17    2347354

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Interesting to hear Richie Power's take on hurling at the moment. I'd agree it is becoming a harder watch lately. I'd disagree its less exciting than football right now but I do think its getting to that stage. Not sure what 'tackling on the edge' means. Either its an illegal challenge or its legal.

Maroonatic (Galway) - Posts: 1003 - 01/06/2021 12:30:28    2347355

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Replying To Maroonatic:  "Interesting to hear Richie Power's take on hurling at the moment. I'd agree it is becoming a harder watch lately. I'd disagree its less exciting than football right now but I do think its getting to that stage. Not sure what 'tackling on the edge' means. Either its an illegal challenge or its legal."
That on the edge phrase means getting away with bad tackles because they aren't technically against the rules or arent spotted by the referee I think.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 1952 - 01/06/2021 13:24:32    2347379

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Replying To Viking66:  "Apparently they had a really good team in the early 80s just before my time going to games. But unfortunately Offaly were excellent at the time and Kilkenny are Kilkenny. They have 5 or 6 hurlers who are great the last few years and a handful of good hurlers to back these lads up but have struggled to get them all on the pitch for the county side at the same time for various reasons. They have a good few strong senior hurling clubs for 120 years they arent traditional minnows. Some money from GAA central funds spent on fulltime GPOs and fulltime coaches at underage would bring them on a long way. If they could get their senior club championship up to 12 clubs, which wouldn't be a great increase to make, they would have a better county team for sure. Their only AI is in hurling not football."
I think the county board have an awful lot to answer for there and seem to be a lot of the problem.

Bon (Kildare) - Posts: 1165 - 01/06/2021 13:33:18    2347384

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Replying To Viking66:  "That on the edge phrase means getting away with bad tackles because they aren't technically against the rules or arent spotted by the referee I think."
Rather than saying I don't understand the term maybe I should say I don't understand why they use it. A little bit pregnant springs to mind. If a tackle is a bad tackle then it's not legal. Dealing with the semantics is something for the rule book to address and then for the officials to interpret. Anyhoo, the game is not quite the spectacle it used to be and on that I'd agree with Power

Maroonatic (Galway) - Posts: 1003 - 01/06/2021 13:55:20    2347395

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Hurling is in a poor place because players are now just looking for the free, waiting to be fouled, rather than trying to play the game and work a score.
The excitement is gone out of the game. I missed Sunday's game but it sounded awful.

StoreysTash (Wexford) - Posts: 1106 - 01/06/2021 14:28:45    2347402

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Replying To Bon:  "I think the county board have an awful lot to answer for there and seem to be a lot of the problem."
Cant argue with that. But if the GAA are serious as an organisation in their aims of promoting and fostering Irish games it is in counties like Laois where they need to start as regards hurling. Pumping money into centres of excellence and stadia in well established hurling counties isnt the best way of growing the game of hurling as far as I can see.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 1952 - 01/06/2021 14:35:44    2347403

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Replying To StoreysTash:  "Hurling is in a poor place because players are now just looking for the free, waiting to be fouled, rather than trying to play the game and work a score.
The excitement is gone out of the game. I missed Sunday's game but it sounded awful."
The 1st half we were disjointed and teamwork was poor. Some of the new lads were all at sea positionally too which didnt help as they then had to foul their man as he went by. Hence TJ scoring 14 points from frees. and some of the new tactics tried weren't very successful either. But better to find that out in a league game against a strong Kilkenny team than in the championship. This all made for a poor game of hurling to watch. 2nd half was more competitive and much better to watch because of it.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 1952 - 01/06/2021 14:42:38    2347409

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Replying To StoreysTash:  "Hurling is in a poor place because players are now just looking for the free, waiting to be fouled, rather than trying to play the game and work a score.
The excitement is gone out of the game. I missed Sunday's game but it sounded awful."
I'm partly blaming technology. There's so much data available now, and will be even more so with those tech friendly yellow sliotars, that data analysts can deduce what % of balls played into certain areas of the pitch reap reward and what simply end up being squandered. Its noticeable how many scores arrive from out the field now. A recent game saw Galway score 3 successive points from each member of the full back line. Every move, every puck out, every play is analysed to the nth degree. The game's becoming too calculating & overly strategised. As a consequence not enough free thinking and off-the cuff play happens

Maroonatic (Galway) - Posts: 1003 - 01/06/2021 15:02:27    2347416

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Replying To Maroonatic:  "Interesting to hear Richie Power's take on hurling at the moment. I'd agree it is becoming a harder watch lately. I'd disagree its less exciting than football right now but I do think its getting to that stage. Not sure what 'tackling on the edge' means. Either its an illegal challenge or its legal."
Richie Power summoned it up exactly and thinking otherwise is to be in denial.I will tell you what an illegal tackle is now. It is when the player goes down after getting a hit from an opponent who has spent 9 months pumping iron in the gym. It doesn't matter if it is fair or foul.

Canuck (Waterford) - Posts: 1337 - 01/06/2021 15:27:14    2347426

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Replying To Maroonatic:  "Interesting to hear Richie Power's take on hurling at the moment. I'd agree it is becoming a harder watch lately. I'd disagree its less exciting than football right now but I do think its getting to that stage. Not sure what 'tackling on the edge' means. Either its an illegal challenge or its legal."
Personally I disagree with Richie and all the ex-KK greats who are coming out of the woodwork to say the same. I occassionally go back and watch Wexford games from my formative years (early to mid 2000s) and I think they're awful games. They always seemed more exciting back then but my god its just lads giving the ball away constantly.

Fulgrim (Wexford) - Posts: 127 - 01/06/2021 15:37:38    2347432

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Replying To Fulgrim:  "Personally I disagree with Richie and all the ex-KK greats who are coming out of the woodwork to say the same. I occassionally go back and watch Wexford games from my formative years (early to mid 2000s) and I think they're awful games. They always seemed more exciting back then but my god its just lads giving the ball away constantly."
Tbh the 90s although exciting from the point of view of more different counties winning Liam were full of poor enough games too. Aimless balls up the pitch that got returned in the same aimless manner, fewer goals, 1 in the 96 final for example, and fewer points only 27 altogether in the 96 final. And alot more physicality, dangerous aerial and ground pulls with most lads not wearing helmets. If it was more exciting it was only because it was more dangerous not because it was higher scoring or more skilful! Rose tinted glasses are wonderful accessories!!!!

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 1952 - 01/06/2021 15:49:47    2347440

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Replying To Viking66:  "Tbh the 90s although exciting from the point of view of more different counties winning Liam were full of poor enough games too. Aimless balls up the pitch that got returned in the same aimless manner, fewer goals, 1 in the 96 final for example, and fewer points only 27 altogether in the 96 final. And alot more physicality, dangerous aerial and ground pulls with most lads not wearing helmets. If it was more exciting it was only because it was more dangerous not because it was higher scoring or more skilful! Rose tinted glasses are wonderful accessories!!!!"
Viking66 I agree up to a point. It is pointless comparing games and players of the past with the future. The game has evolved and players have evolved. However were you more entertained from those games ? The rules need to help that evolution in a safe entertaining way. I would question maybe safer now without statics. Were there the same number of cruciate knee injuries, hamstrings and grabbing around the neck ? Of course there were others like you said but more dangerous, more injuries then ? Aerial play catching or hitting the ball is a skill not a dangerous play and yes helmets were a good protection to avoid head injuries. I see where this is going though. Remove anything including tackles that might result in injury. This in a supposedly a contact sport. Take up ludo, it is dead safe.
In my humble opinion these many uncontested 30 points a game like golf strokes are no improvement. A point from the goalie to an unmarked or drawn player. A point every two minute plus plus puck out time, side line balls and other stoppages tells me me there is significantly less play. Throw in the stale mate in rucks on top of that.
Maybe the game as played today is what the majority want to see and I respect that opinion. I will not be comparing past and present because there are way two many different variables but will call out what I see is taking from the game today.

Canuck (Waterford) - Posts: 1337 - 01/06/2021 17:11:31    2347470

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Replying To StoreysTash:  "Hurling is in a poor place because players are now just looking for the free, waiting to be fouled, rather than trying to play the game and work a score.
The excitement is gone out of the game. I missed Sunday's game but it sounded awful."
Are you saying Kilkenny looked for the 15 fouls that TJ scored on Sunday. From what I saw as a neutral every time the wexford defender was rounded by his man he fouled him by pulling his arm or his hurley. There is no denying it and its not hurling. Richie Power is right but Im afraid he is a another ' let it flow' merchant and thinks the refs need to throw away the whistle. We wouldnt be having this discussion if the refs had tacked this fouling issue years earlier and It is now at crisis point.

ZUL10 (Clare) - Posts: 639 - 01/06/2021 17:19:48    2347471

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Replying To Viking66:  "Tbh the 90s although exciting from the point of view of more different counties winning Liam were full of poor enough games too. Aimless balls up the pitch that got returned in the same aimless manner, fewer goals, 1 in the 96 final for example, and fewer points only 27 altogether in the 96 final. And alot more physicality, dangerous aerial and ground pulls with most lads not wearing helmets. If it was more exciting it was only because it was more dangerous not because it was higher scoring or more skilful! Rose tinted glasses are wonderful accessories!!!!"
Yes indeed. Cork and Kilkenny, the two mighty aristocrats of hurling, the combination many neutrals on here want to see in every AIF, scored a total of twenty five points between them in the goalless 1999 Final.

Oldtourman (Limerick) - Posts: 2913 - 01/06/2021 19:42:11    2347494

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Replying To ZUL10:  "Are you saying Kilkenny looked for the 15 fouls that TJ scored on Sunday. From what I saw as a neutral every time the wexford defender was rounded by his man he fouled him by pulling his arm or his hurley. There is no denying it and its not hurling. Richie Power is right but Im afraid he is a another ' let it flow' merchant and thinks the refs need to throw away the whistle. We wouldnt be having this discussion if the refs had tacked this fouling issue years earlier and It is now at crisis point."
Dido. Why does the pulling and dragging continue despite the calling of frees that give an excuse me score with the consequences of doing it no deterrent ? Punishment not sufficient ? Too easy to equal that score ? One of the contributing factors is there is now no legal hit in the game and this is the result. We see it week in week out. If in these fights for possession (horrible rucks) why is there one hand free ? let them go int there with two hands on the stick, feet planted, elbows down and hit that guy in possession a good body check. The ball will get moved quicker but the game now is obviously coached to hold possession. Don't anyone tell me even if it was on the shoulder and the player went down it won't get called ?
Fouling pays off. The way rules are applied or not contribute. Coaching, win at all costs. Spectators okay with anything that does not effect their team. Strength more valuable than skill with strengthening coaches getting players hurt much more than any good hit. My favourite sport is slipping into oblivion.

Canuck (Waterford) - Posts: 1337 - 01/06/2021 19:53:46    2347498

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Replying To Canuck:  "Viking66 I agree up to a point. It is pointless comparing games and players of the past with the future. The game has evolved and players have evolved. However were you more entertained from those games ? The rules need to help that evolution in a safe entertaining way. I would question maybe safer now without statics. Were there the same number of cruciate knee injuries, hamstrings and grabbing around the neck ? Of course there were others like you said but more dangerous, more injuries then ? Aerial play catching or hitting the ball is a skill not a dangerous play and yes helmets were a good protection to avoid head injuries. I see where this is going though. Remove anything including tackles that might result in injury. This in a supposedly a contact sport. Take up ludo, it is dead safe.
In my humble opinion these many uncontested 30 points a game like golf strokes are no improvement. A point from the goalie to an unmarked or drawn player. A point every two minute plus plus puck out time, side line balls and other stoppages tells me me there is significantly less play. Throw in the stale mate in rucks on top of that.
Maybe the game as played today is what the majority want to see and I respect that opinion. I will not be comparing past and present because there are way two many different variables but will call out what I see is taking from the game today."
I agree with you. So called free hand fouls or jersey tugs shouldn't result in frees at all. At the other end of the scale full speed dangerous contact, ie charges or strikes into the front of the abdomen or head, should be straight red cards. This would then hopefully result in alot of the diving and rolling around after minimal contact being gone out of the game as the players would know they weren't going to get a free at all. And the game will be safer. As regards cruciates these are occurring in all sports as the players muscles are now too strong for their ligaments. You cant build up your ligaments through training.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 1952 - 01/06/2021 20:07:26    2347502

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Replying To ZUL10:  "Are you saying Kilkenny looked for the 15 fouls that TJ scored on Sunday. From what I saw as a neutral every time the wexford defender was rounded by his man he fouled him by pulling his arm or his hurley. There is no denying it and its not hurling. Richie Power is right but Im afraid he is a another ' let it flow' merchant and thinks the refs need to throw away the whistle. We wouldnt be having this discussion if the refs had tacked this fouling issue years earlier and It is now at crisis point."
Minimal contact like pulling a fellas arm or shirt shouldn't be a foul at all. Problem solved.

Viking66 (Wexford) - Posts: 1952 - 01/06/2021 20:08:27    2347504

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