Seanie McGrath on intriguing changes for the Cork hurlers

Former All Ireland winner analyses squad ahead of Tipp match

Luke Meade, Cork, hurling

Luke Meade of Cork celebrates scoring a goal ©INPHO/Conor Wyse

Seanie McGrath has expressed his excitment at some of the young talented coming through for the Cork hurlers ahead of the 2017 Munster Championship.

Kieran Kingston's side face a tough challenge against reigning All Ireland victors Tipperary on Sunday in their Munster opener and 1999 All Ireland winner McGrath has credited the current manager with making changes that add youth to the side. 

"Cork are going through a transitional period. While we haven't been winning All Irelands, we were very close in 2013 and competed really well in '14. When we played Tipperary in the All Ireland semi final in 2014, we'd won a brilliant Munster campaign and went up there full of optimism and felt we'd a right chance of getting to the final," he said on Off The Ball alongside former Tipp hurler Tommy Dunne.

"But when you look at what happened in '15 and '16, there wasn't a whole pile of influx of talent and to tip the hat to Kieran this year, he's really gone for it really.

"When the team is picked for Sunday, you'll probably see three if not four debutantes, young lads that have come through the underage ranks. Now, they haven't won much underage but at the same time, they are really talented. They've performed well throughout the league and I think that's where the realism has kicked in and that's where Kieran is getting a good bit of support down here, the fact that he's made the calls and made big calls last year in dropping some big name players who had done a great job for Cork over the last decade, maybe the thing had moved on.

"You've now got fellas coming through like Shane Kingston, Mikey Cahalane, Darragh Fitzgibbon, Luke Meade, Mark Coleman... all talented lads and I think three, if not four of them, will get their chance on Sunday. They're quality. You saw the goal Luke Meade got in the league against Tipp."