All-Ireland winning manager Liam Sheedy revealed the secrets of a very successful career on the sideline to members of the DCU GAA club on Tuesday evening last.
Sheedy entertained the notion that his 2010 All-Ireland winning senior panel wasn’t the most talented squad, but they were “the 33 hardest-working players in the country.” The ex-Tipperary manager also referred to luck as “hard work meets opportunity” and, with DCU’s hurling club seeking considerable improvements, he visibly struck a chord when he revealed that “if you expect to achieve results never before achieved, you’ve to commit yourself to a level never before attempted.”
The importance that Sheedy places on laborious preparation is something that he undoubtedly instills into his local club Portroe. Speaking in the Business building, the 43-year-old explained how Portroe had never been able to break into the ‘A’ Championship, before deciding that “enough is enough” and ended up winning the North Tipperary Championship this year. It’s an example that will surely trigger the urge of DCU’s hurlers to bridge the gap between themselves and the more successful institutions in higher education hurling.
Sheedy sees belief as another crucial component of a fruitful squad. A positive mindset is imperative for every hurler in DCU, especially when facing the “bigger” teams, according to Sheedy, and he firmly professes “if you believe that a team is a bogey team, they’re a bogey team.”
Chatting to the Portroe man after his speech, he speaks fondly of his time coaching his local club and doesn’t intend on leaving their management team any time soon. He was insistent on the fact that he won’t be returning to inter-county management in the near future because of these commitments but also points out that his time-consuming day job is another factor.
If we do see Liam Sheedy back on the Inter-County scene one day, it may not be with a men’s team. With two daughters, he jokingly told the audience that “camogie matches is all that’s facing me now” and with the Tipperary camogie players having not won an All-Ireland since 2004, there’s the need for a manager to do exactly what Sheedy did with the men during his three-year stint as manager.