Some of the Cookstown team celebrate their Kirk Cup success
Some of the Cookstown team celebrate their Kirk Cup success

COOKSTOWN coach Stephen Cuddy insists his players are hungry for more trophies this season and won’t be resting on their laurels after yesterday’s Kirk Cup final win at Havelock Park.

“I thought we started well against ‘Garvey who are top side today and I felt the hunger was there to be seen.” he said.

“You look at likes of Godfrey Irwin - he’s been out for a year with injury but he was outstanding today.

“Andy Barbour controls things from the centre of midfield week in week out and we have guys in forward line who can get us goals.

“Our form’s been a little bit patchy but we have proved we can mix it with the big guns.

“I am very, very pleased and hopefully can be a little bit more consistent and improve our league form.

“We will then start building towards April and the Irish Hockey League - I dont think the boys will be happy with just the one trophy so we will really push on and see if we get can something else this season.

Cookstown’s veteran midfielder Barbour, who is now 35, added that the win didn’t seem as comfortable as it looked form the sidelines.

“We wanted to start the game at a tough pace and I think we did that. We could have been a goal or two more up before we got our second.” he explained.

“They obviously came back into it. They are a very good team and they’re in the last 16 in Europe.

“We held on a wee bit at times but at other times we could have scored more goals on the counter attack.

“Overall I think we deserved it but it certainly wasn’t comfortable. I think we controlled it. Maybe their top players didn’t play as well as they could but we had them marked well.

“It sets down a marker and six years ago if someone said Cookstown would be winning league and cups you’d have laughed but we’ve won the Kirk Cup and it’s fantastic.”

Lisnagarvey coach Kyle Lunn admitted that the better team won on the day and that his own side didn’t play to their potential.

“I thought Cookstown played very well. On the day we didn’t perform and Cookstown did so I can have no complaints about the outcome.” he confessed.

“It’s hard straight after the game to put finger on what went wrong but I couldn’t have asked for any more in terms of build up to the game.

I coulldn’t the players’ effort but little things didn’t quite come off and they make all the difference.

“When Cookstown got ahead we were always chasing the game still lots but there is still plenty to play for in the New Year.

‘Garvey’s experienced former Ireland midfielder Mark Raphael was also magnanimous in defeat.

“Defensively we were poor and we got turned over far too easily. Pushing forward left us vulnerable to the counter attack and they took their chances very well.” he commented.

“We didn’t really create much. We were guilty of giving the ball away far too much. To be fair to them they had a game plan.

“We couldn’t get through them and they hit us on the break and they deserved to win although we played into their hands too much.”