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Diarmaid Byrnes says this Patrickswell crop want to make their own bit of history
Last Updated: 09/11/19 12:09pm
Patrickswell head for Waterford on Sunday with a point to prove.
The recently-crowned Limerick champions boast two Munster titles in their history, in 1988 and 1990. Ciarán Carey, Gary Kirby and Co. drove the side through the late 1980s and early 1990s, but now it's time for the next generation.
Last month, the 'Well' secured their second county title in four years, and are now eager to push on and make their mark on the provincial stage.
"When you walk into the clubhouse, to the left, there's now 20 pictures of club champions on the wall," said Diarmaid Byrnes.
"There is a history there.
"We all want to make our own bit of history, in our own jersey, with our own team. What's done in the past is done.
"I've two county titles now and I want to add to that, same as the players beside me. You just want to leave your own mark on it. The pictures on the wall are from the past. Of the 20, I'm only involved in two, the other 18 are in the past, they are history. You want to be filling more gaps on that wall now. Make a piece of history and leave your mark on the club."
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"We all want to make our own bit of history, in our own jersey, with our own team. What's done in the past is done."
Byrnes wants to create a legacy
Leading the side is Carey, a club legend who has also managed Kerry in recent seasons. Given what he achieved in the game as a player, the former Limerick star commands respect among his squad.
"He's a gas man in the dressing room and a gas man around the place," chuckled Byrnes. "Always level-headed, always cool. But on a one-to-one basis, he's brilliant for the players. He knows everyone individually, he knows their strengths, their weaknesses, working with players, trying to get the best out of them. He knows that as well."
Carey's nephew, 2018 Hurler of the Year Cian Lynch, has been a central figure in the current side.
"He has been super this year," Byrnes said of his team-mate.
"I've seen him put on some great shows in the green jersey and the blue and yellow jersey for Patrickswell, I've played alongside him since I was U10, U12 the whole way up along. We'd just stand back and watch his flicks or whatever he's doing, it's brilliant.
"The role kind of suits him, as captain. He's been brilliant for us to be honest. Even speaking in the huddle and stuff like that, he knows what will hit the nail on the head. If someone's not carrying their weight he knows how to deal with it, he wouldn't be one for effing and blinding and getting you going, but he knows how to get the boat rolling."
If they're looking for stages upon which to make a statement, they couldn't ask for much bigger than Sunday's match away to the reigning provincial champions, Ballygunner.
"[It's a] massive match," Byrnes admitted.
"They're an experienced club. What have they won? Six in a row in Waterford? Serious club team. Massive challenge, especially travelling to Waterford as well.
"You want to go out and leave a mark on Munster and make a bit of history, for yourself individually, as a group of players and most importantly for the club. So look, we want to put our stamp on Munster, and we've a massive challenge on Sunday so we're looking forward to it.
"We've been fairly going at it in training so hopefully the training we've done and the matches we've played in training will stand to us."