New Tipp boss 'optimistic' about next season27/09/2012 - 11:34:24
Newly-appointed Tipperary senior hurling manager Eamon O'Shea is putting his best foot forward as the county look to bounce back from their humbling All-Ireland SHC exit to Kilkenny.
Tipp were handed a 4-24 to 1-15 semi-final hammering by the Cats in what proved to be Declan Ryan's last game in charge. His replacement O'Shea, who was ratified on Tuesday night, says there will be no attempt at a quick fix.
"We're not going to rush into it. These players have been hurling into late August and September for the last five years," he told local radio station, Tipp FM.
"So we're starting from a good base, and I'm optimistic about the next year. It's right to have expectations, but they need to be tempered.
"The first challenge is to get back to the top two. We're in the top four, so we're not that far away. These players have had a lot of success, even in the last two years they have been Munster champions."
O'Shea is already a familiar face to many of the Tipperary panel having been their coach during Liam Sheedy's successful tenure, which produced a memorable All-Ireland title win in 2010.
Asked about his likely backroom team, the NUI Galway Head of Economics said that it will take a few weeks to confirm his managerial set-up given the timeframe of him taking over.
"This only came to fruition over the weekend so it will be over the next month I'll be putting the backroom team together, and we'll be getting the panel together by late October and early November.
"I was at the (county) quarter-finals over the weekend and I'm looking forward to going to the semi-finals and finals. We will be looking at new players, but there's a lot of good ones in Tipperary. By January we will be properly up and running."
Whether some of the county's older hands will be preparing for another new campaign at inter-county level remains to be seen, with some big names - including goalkeeper Brendan Cummins and key forwards Eoin Kelly and Lar Corbett - linked with retirement since that loss to Kilkenny.
Emphasising the importance of having the right blend in the team, O'Shea added: "I'm not certain about retirements. Tipperary do need senior players over the next two or three years to help transition.
"I would hope we have a strong mix of young and old. Players have to take ownership. It is their team and up to them to make the team successful.
"I want us to have the traditional Tipperary style of grit along with the more modern approaches to the game."
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