BY DENIS HURLEY
CORK’S win over Armagh in their final Division 2 league game can provide the template for the championship, according to defender Kevin Flahive.
Needing a win to have any chance of avoiding relegation, Cork went to the Athletic Grounds and earned victory. While it ultimately didn’t keep them up, Flahive believes that winning such a game will stand to the Rebels, who clash with Limerick in Páirc Uí Rinn at 7pm on Saturday.
‘That was it,’ he says, ‘it was the case that if we didn’t win then we were going down.
‘What Ronan [McCarthy] said was that it was in our hands and if it didn’t go our way then it didn’t go our way, there was nothing we could do about it.
‘We went out and won, it was a very good game and Armagh definitely put it up to us, we got enough of it that day, they’re a really strong team. We were delighted to get the win up there and that’s what you have to build from.’
Douglas clubman Flahive felt that the team learned as the league went on. Even though they will be in Division 3 next year, the final three games were a marked improvement on the first four outings, which failed to yield a victory.
‘We’d have briefings after most games,’ he says.
‘We really do go through them and we look at our own mistakes, mostly, and then we look at the next thing.
‘Halfway through, we said, “Look, it’s not going well,” and if you look at the Tipp game, the Donegal game and the Armagh game, they were significantly better.
‘We did discuss things after the league and the main thing obviously was that we did go down but you have to park that. It’s next year’s problem and nobody has even mentioned it at this stage, everything is geared towards the championship.
‘There is potential there and that’s the hope, that we’re going to drive on now and show that in the championship.’
In that effort, Flahive is likely to be manning of the slots in the full-back line, as he was when helping UCC to Sigerson Cup victory earlier this year, beating St Mary’s of Belfast in the final.
While he might perform well in more open prairie if given the chance, he is happy to operate in the more confined roles in order to help the team.
‘To be honest, I’m happy to do the job I’m given,’ he says.
‘I’d probably be a natural half-back but I’m inside in the corner and most of the time I’m given a job to do.
‘I’m delighted to be playing, it’s a team game and our wing-backs have been fantastic. The management have faith in me to be playing and I’m happy to contribute to the team.
‘Hopefully, we can get over Limerick and then Clare or Kerry in the Munster final and drive on from there.’