Guest of Honour Cian Lynch speaking at the Medal Presentation for the 2020 Munster MHC winners. PIC: Diarmuid Greene
"WE are all chasing the same common goal and that’s striving for the best," outlined Limerick hurling star Cian Lynch when addressing Sunday's Medal Presentation for the county's 2020 Munster minor hurling winning panel.
Lynch and Munster GAA chairman Liam Lenihan were the guests of honour at the ceremony to honour the 2020 Munster MHC winners in the Woodlands House Hotel.
The Patrickswell star recalled his minor hurling days in 2013 and 2014 - both ending with Munster Championship titles.
"I was lucky enough to to be in the privileged position that I came through the academy under Joe McKenna, Gerry McManus, Pat Donnelly and the various managers who gave me opportunities," recalled Lynch.
"We experienced winning Munster finals and experienced the hurt of losing an All-Ireland semi final and an All-Ireland final - they are the ups and downs of life."
He outlined how those years at minor level laid the foundation for senior success.
"It goes back to hurt and those highs and lows of life. You experience the winning feeling and get a taste of success that all you guys have at the moment. It’s a habit and when you get a taste of winning, you want to keep doing it and losing isn’t an option. We lost in 2013 and 2014 and to this day, they are among my big regrets - especially losing the final to Kilkenny in 2014," said Lynch to the gathering of players and parents, team management and Limerick GAA invited guests.
Lynch urged the panel of 34 players from the 2020 minor panel to remain in contact.
"This represents togetherness. A lot of ye are 18 or 19 and getting on with life in school or college but continue that ethos that ye have because we are all chasing the same common goal and that’s striving for the best where it is on the hurling pitch or in life."
He explained: "Continue to look out for each other. I remember back to 2013 and 2014 and we have a bond still to this day. It’s seven or eight years ago but we all still stay in touch and even some of the lads who haven’t progressed, we still have that bond and unity. If I give ye one piece of advice it would be to continue to stay in touch with each other. There are different paths in life and some guys will go one direction and one another, but continue to remember each other and stay in touch and look out for one another".
"It’s a cycle of life and I hope and pray that a lot of ye will push me on and get the opportunity to play on the Limerick senior hurling team. Listen to yer parents, listen to yer coaches because the Limerick Academy and what is ahead as you move yup through the grades is special," he said.
"I was sitting down observing this crest here up behind us and it’s instilled in us all. I know it’s a cliche but wear that crest with pride because ye are ambassadors and not just for yer clubs but for Limerick city and beyond. There are young kids and probably people older than ye that look up to ye," said Lynch, who captained Limerick to the 2014 Munster MHC title.
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