"When it comes to the white heat of the Championship - we know these lads will be ready"

Tommy Walsh feels Kilkenny are gearing up nicely ahead of the All-Ireland Championship

BY Simon Maguire 20:40 Monday 5 February 2018, 20:40 5 Feb 2018

The Kilkenny team. Image: ©INPHO/James Crombie

Tommy Walsh joined Monday's Off the Ball to discuss the situation in Kilkenny hurling after a couple of defeats early in the season. 

"There's a lot of attention going towards Kilkenny because of their success over the last 15/20 years," he told Joe Molloy. 

"I was at a coaching seminar there in the last two weeks and one of the speakers gave a really interesting talk and told a great story. 

"He was saying there was this old guy and he was going down to the beach one day - his local beach and there was hundreds and hundreds of fish coming up on to the shore and there was a little lad down there and he was throwing the fish one-by-one back into the sea.

"And he goes to the little lad anyway, 'What are you doing? You're wasting your time' and the little lad said to him 'I've thrown one fish back - there's one lad saved', threw in another lad - 'there's another lad saved', threw in another lad - 'there's another lad saved' and on he went. 

"The old guy says 'this is a great young fella altogether' and if you can bring that back to what's happening in Kilkenny at the moment - everyone is seeing us losing. We lost the Walsh Cup, we lost the first round of the league, we lost the second round of the league so this is May and everyone is writing Kilkenny off. 

"But, to me, these guys are young lads. We're starting now to build for the future and Brian Cody and his management team are learning valuable lessons. 

"To me, first of all, they were getting beaten by a point in the Walsh Cup final versus Wexford at Nowlan Park, a big crowd there from Kilkenny and they came back and drew the match. I know they lost then after the extra time with the frees and that.

"Suddenly then we were down in Cork - everything was going in Cork's favour. We came back - brought ourselves into the game. Listen, I know we lost the game in the end but same again yesterday. Just before halftime, Clare were going to wipe the floor with Kilkenny but these guys came back and back and back and this is not the old Kilkenny - this is the new Kilkenny. 

"The new young lads that are coming through so straight away we know these lads have character and when it comes to the white heat of the Championship - we know these lads will be able to do it," he added. 

The full interview can be heard here:

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