Paul Kerrigan says Nemo Rangers’ success if founded upon its culture
Not many clubs at Ireland boast a listing as impressive as Nemo Rangers.
“We have 16 Munster clubs, 21 counties,” smiles Nemo and Cork celebrity Paul Kerrigan, proudly.
As soon as they acquire their county title the town club have a peerless conversion speed of titles. For context, the club with the second provincial titles is Crossmaglen in Ulster, with all 11.
“Virtually three-quarters of this moment, we’ve won the Munster club,” Kerrigan clarifies.
“If you get out of Cork. . .it’s the immediate objective to win the Munster club and we’re one more match from this.”
Growing is at Nemo’s DNA, and that tradition will be passed from generation to generation. Since the beginning of the All-Ireland club competition, the Cork side have been consistent contenders. Really, since their first Munster victory in 1972, the longest they’ve gone without a provincial crown was seven years (1993 to 2000).
“We have a rich record of really, really, really, really fantastic players placing it back into the club. I could name a lot,” he has gone.
“Billy Morgan is a selector with us. I performed two lads that are Willie Morgan, selectors and Gary Murphy. They won nightclubs . Even our management team that got into the club [closing ], there’s a few of them involved with all the provincial as well. I think that culture of no one gets ahead of themselves, I think no one has the attitude of’what does the club owe me’ It is what more could I do?
“When I was growing up, you would be talking about James Pros and Derek Kavanagh. James Pros and Derek Kavanagh are currently talking about Colin Corkery and Joe Kavanagh. Colin Corkery is currently talking about Dinny Allen, [who] is talking about Billy Morgan, who’s talking about Brian Murphy. So it’s there.
“You just want it to continue. You’d probably stick out like a sore thumb When there’s an ego at the club.
“There is probably an unwritten rule in case you are a county participant, you need to come back to watch training, be at the league matches, be at the challenge games. When that occurs, you’re fit into the style of drama. You are not a bonus player. If you are a county participant, that is fantastic. All the pressure isn’t on you”
Focus is on Sunday’s AIB Munster Championship final against Clonmel Commercials.
And while it is just two decades because Dr Crokes in the decider upset, there is several young stars over the Nemo positions looking for their trophy. One of that crop, Brian Murphy, James O’Donovan and Mark Cronin aided the Cork U20s to acquire the All-Ireland title in 2019.
“We have a board of 35, there are most likely 13 or 14 U21s later coming through,” mentioned Kerrigan. “We are lucky because it maybe wasn’t there a few years ago. They are getting a large amount of games in intermediate which is quite great for their own development.
“This new team, they are taking a look at the success and they are trying to have as many county medals as they can, winning Munsters and find an All-Ireland if they can, and live up to the prior teams. We are very lucky and very conscious of not fading off”
To Castlehaven, they endured a shock early exit after All-Ireland closing heartbreak in 2017-18 from the Cork Championship, which led to some winter of manifestation.
“Last year we had a year off, that was dreadful,” Kerrigan laments. “But we answered that and won a county in fairly convincing manner.
“Fellas had an extra long winter, also that I believe that they really looked in themselves. They worked on stuff they needed to. A good deal of lads have purchased into the conditioning and strength thing today, which would not have been too large of a thing [earlier ].”
However, this group that was current have reconstructed and are returning more powerful.
On Sunday afternoon, they could win a 17th title. Whether they win or lose Dungarvan, they surely know that they’re not out of their depth at this level.