'It Gives The Whole County A Lift' - Laois Legend Pat Critchley On Club Success

The former hurling all-star was drawing on his own experience with Portlaoise.

Laois hurling legend Pat Critchley thinks the whole county will be out in force to support Portarlington and Clough/Ballacolla this weekend. 

The former Leinster and All-Ireland club football champion with Portlaoise says the unknown surrounding success at inter-county level adds another layer of importance to the club game in the O'Moore County. 

The hurling all-star of 1985 was speaking at the launch of the Sigerson Cup, in which he's enjoyed a rich vein of success as manager of IT Carlow while drawing on players from so called 'less successful' counties. 

Critchley speaking about the support received during his own run with Portlaoise said;

'The whole county would follow Portlaoise in the same way that they'll be following Portarlington and Clough/Ballacolla this weekend and it does give the whole county a lift when that happens.

Similarly with IT Carlow, when the players come together and they can compete with the top teams and the top players, it's a great journey for them. 

He went on to draw comparisons between the importance of the Sigerson Cup to the club game for players who may not necessarily get the opportunity to play at the highest level or compete at the top grounds against the top players: 

'From mainly the counties were drawing from, that run in the Sigerson is a huge part of their playing careers.

Hopefully they'll get a similarly good run with their club or county in the future, but it won't always happen for them. That is just the reality of it but when they come together here as a unit and challenge the top teams against Cliffords an the O'Sheas and come out on top, it's a great feeling for them and gives them a great boost of confidence.

It helps all those lads in their development as players and ultimately that's what were trying to do. We want to develop players as well as the overall performance of the team.'



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