Brian Cody believes Kilkenny are in a greater place heading into the final 4 as Leinster champions than the earlier two years.
In addition to claiming an 18th senior provincial title below Cody on Saturday, the Cats annexed a 3rd consecutive Bob O’Keeffe Cup, though this was their first ever below the round-robin format.
Regardless of a 100% report in Leinster, Kilkenny misplaced the 2020 and ’21 All-Eire semi-finals to Waterford and Cork respectively however Cody considers it’s completely different this time round.
“It’s a fair point because obviously a round-robin puts serious requirements on all the teams involved in it,” he remarked. “First of all, it is a challenge to get out of Leinster, three teams got out, Dublin missed out after they were in pole position you might say for a while there, and very unfortunate to lose out.
“As it turned out, we got straight to the Leinster final and brilliantly obviously now we have won the Leinster final. Should those matches in the round robin stand to us, they should stand to us, but again whoever we are going to come up against in the semi-final will have had the semi preparation too.”
Pre-split season, Cody would have launched his gamers again to the golf equipment this coming weekend however he has no considerations concerning the four-week hole to their last-four recreation.
“I’m happy to have the four-week break at this stage because it has been very intense and very little time for training at all from the point of view of working at things in training and just building a whole sense of being ready for the challenge. We have that opportunity now, use the time to recover and really prepare well.”
Having made 4 adjustments to his beginning staff that misplaced to Wexford whereas maintaining Pádraig Walsh in reserve, Cody acknowledged the criticism he had obtained for rotating his staff however paid it little regard.
“I’m always saying about the quality of our panel, everybody is not kind of absolutely thrilled about our team or anything else and people talk about why haven’t we a settled team, I’ve never in my life been concerned about having a settled 15.
“We have a settled panel, a settled attitude and a settled spirit, and that’s very strong and was proven tonight – we can bring in players or leave out players and it doesn’t change the potential in our team.”