Alan Cadogan has built a reputation as one of the country’s most dangerous forwards. The Douglas clubman has picked up Man of the Match awards on his debut against Waterford in 2014 and in his last outing, the Munster final against Clare.
Cadogan was speaking to the Irish Independent ahead of today’s All-Ireland semi-final against Waterford. Having had his brother, Eoin, playing hurling with Cork during his teenage years. Alan Cadogan spoke of how joining Eoin’s ball alley sessions with some of Cork’s greats played a big part in his development;
“I remember thinking ‘God am I able for this? Will I be slowing them down?
“Those sessions made me, really. They opened my eyes.”
But joining the likes of Eoin Cadogan, Donal Óg Cusack, Seán Óg Ó hAilpín and Tom Kenny was very beneficial to Alan Cadogan. The sessions were extremely intense and competitive as players with multiple All-Ireland medals pursued more.
“It would be just full-on. Donal Óg (Cusack) usually ran the sessions. Lads would be all friends going in but quite often come away really p*ssed off. Because it was so competitive”.
Despite being younger in age, the experienced Cork players never lessened their efforts against the younger Cadogan brother and he rates this as a major part of his learning.
“And the best thing was they didn’t take it easy on me. Even when we were just doing skills drills, they’d never be pucking the ball to me nice and easy. Their attitude was ‘If you’re in here with us, you’re doing the same as we do…’ I’ll always be grateful for that”.
Alan Cadogan is slowly following in the footsteps of Cork inside forwards like Joe Deane and Ben O’Connor. He carries a major threat from play and Cork supporters will be hoping that he can now deliver in Croke Park, like his predecessors.