CORK boss John Meyler was delighted that another important step on the road that he hopes will lead to qualification for the All-Ireland series was taken in the 13-point win over Waterford on Saturday night.
“I am delighted with the performance. It matched the performance of Limerick three weeks ago and we were coming in here tonight against Waterford with no game under our belt.
“I felt that at times we might have been a small bit rusty but we got that performance, we got the win and the two points that we needed.
“It’s on to Clare now next Sunday, another really, hard, difficult match for us. They are fighting for their lives, we are too so we need to up that performance tonight."
Might there have been a bit of complacency in the camp given all the negative vibes that had been coming out of Waterford in the lead up to the game?
“Look, Waterford are a proud hurling county. They were in the All-Ireland final two years ago and we all have troughs in our lives.
“I have been there umpteen times when you lose matches by 10, 12 or 15 points and everyone gives out.
“I know Padraic Fanning a long time, he’s a fantastic hurling man and they’ll regroup and they had a lot of young players out there tonight so they must just go away and refocus and re-energise."
Meyler admitted that there was still plenty to work on with his players going forward.
“Yes, Waterford threatened us when we were up six, seven or eight points and they came back into the game with the two goals.
“But what I liked about us was that when they got the goals we responded on both occasions with points, three, four, five points in a row.
“In the second-half there, Kingston came in and got a couple of points, Tim O’Mahony got a few points when he came on, Lehane too and they were critical and we just drove it on then.
“Winning this game was absolutely critical and we need to go to Ennis now and up it again and that’s really vital.’ And the competition for places is intensifying the whole time, he admitted.
“Aidan Walsh had a tremendous catch there in the first-half but he kind of faded towards the end of the half and then to put in Kingston who got some good points, Lehane coming in, it’s a 20, 21 man game, to have your subs and more importantly that when they do come on they make an impact.
“You must have that strength in depth.’’