AS you headed up the road on Saturday to Thurles one thing was plainly obvious.
As usual the Cork hurling faithful were travelling in numbers to support the Rebels as they took on Waterford in the Allianz Hurling League decider.
The current custodians of the red jersey are no different from those gone before them as they share a special bond with their fans, who will travel the length of the country to support them.
The Rebel roar was to the fore at Semple Stadium and looking around the ground they outnumbered Déise fans by about two to one. All made the journey in hope of seeing the cup return to Leeside for the first time since 1998, but it wasn’t to be.
No doubt on the road home there was many a debate about who played well, who didn’t and where it all went wrong for Cork.
Everyone has an opinion on this and is very much entitled to it. They are entitled to say how player A or B played and how they thought the management did.
They are fully entitled to criticise both and feel frustrated at the overall performance and having to travel home after suffering another loss in a final.
But the one thing few of those will do is abuse the players, they are loyal Cork supporters who hand over their hard-earned money to support the Rebels and you can guarantee they will do the same again all through the upcoming championship campaign.
Unfortunately, we now live in a world where people take to online forums and think it is ok to abuse players and call them all sorts of names which won’t be repeated here.
This abuse can appear anywhere, under a tweet from this paper or indeed many other media outlets and across other online forums. Some of them hide behind user names so they can’t be identified and some don’t.
Of course, it is ok to have an opinion and voice it and no one should ever try to stop that but these people go too far. To the credit of others, they are fast to point it out and tell them to cop on, but they just don’t seem to care.
I once had a father thank me for writing something positive about his son who had been outstanding for Cork the previous weekend. Over a period of time, he had received awful abuse online which was way over the top.
He went on to tell me that his mother had pleaded with him to stop playing with Cork as she couldn’t look at the abuse anymore and was horrified at how her son was being treated.
That’s simply not right and it has to stop.
Absolutely have your say on every game, every player, and the management team but please let’s stop this abuse. They all have families, wives or partners who should not have to read this abuse or be told about it by others.
So let's praise or criticise as is fit but please let’s stop the abuse, no one deserves that.