Kevin O’Brien reports from Nowlan Park

BRIAN CODY DESCRIBED the first-half incident involving Greg Kennedy during today’s Leinster SHC opener as “a bizarre thing to do” by the Dublin backroom team member.

Brian Cody clashes with Greg Kennedy near the sideline.

Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

The former Galway defender, who also worked with Mattie Kenny during his tenure in Cuala, was giving instructions on the field near the end of the first-half when he cut out TJ Reid’s attempt to play a free short to Billy Ryan.

Ryan was unmarked but Kennedy positioned himself in front of the forward and caught Reid’s pass, denying the Cats a goalscoring opportunity.

Referee Cathal McAllister told Kennedy to leave the field but did not make any sanction and Cody was visibly irate as the selector exited the fray. 

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“I’d say even people who are longer involved in the game than I am haven’t seen it so I certainly haven’t seen it before,” said Cody.

“I know Greg Kennedy played a fair bit at corner-back but tonight it was a bizarre thing to do. 

“Of course I was unhappy about it because TJ spotted him (Ryan), gave the ball to him.

“TJ could have tapped it over the bar obviously but he was thinking ‘goal opportunity’ because it was a goal opportunity and that happened so I wasn’t happy about it, no, I wasn’t.”

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Kennedy and Cody made up after the final whistle.

Source: Ryan Byrne/INPHO

Dublin boss Kenny maintained he didn’t see the incident but said it was an accident on Kennedy’s part.

“I didn’t see it because it was a free in for Kilkenny,” he offered. “I presumed that it was a tap over free and I was talking to our half-forwards trying to get them into position for our puck-out.

“I didn’t see it but look it, I know Greg a long, long time. I was just talking to him there, the whistle hadn’t gone he was going off the field. The ball was coming over his head, he told me it was just kind of a reaction thing. Greg is a real top class sports guy.

“He’s very competitive but one thing about him, he wouldn’t do anything like that deliberately and he assured me it was just a reaction when the ball came over his head.”

When asked if any member of the Dublin set-up offered an apology for Kennedy’s actions afterwards, Cody replied: “What happened after the match, I’m not even remotely interested in that.

“If they were or whatever, that’s between themselves and ourselves.”

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