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Published: 12:53 | 4/9/16

Larkin admits he's playing catch-up

Kilkenny's Eoin Larkin is hoping that he is peaking at the right time ahead of Sunday's All-Ireland final clash with Tipperary.

The 32-year-old was deployed to Syria on peacekeeping duty with the Irish Army after clinching his ninth All-Ireland medal last September and after missing the league campaign, the James Stephens player has spent the summer trying to hit top form at the right time.

“It was a case of playing catch-up," he told RTÉ Sport. "It’s definitely taken me a lot longer to get into things than I would have expected coming back.

"Thankfully things are starting to turn around for me now and hopefully I’m coming into a bit of form.

“You need to be up to the pace of things. If you’re not, you’ll be caught out."

The Cats needed a replay to see off Waterford in the semi-final and they were lucky to take it to a second match, needing a last-gasp Walter Walsh goal to prevent them going out to the Deise.

“We didn’t play as well as we could have the first day. Credit has to go to Waterford for that; they played exceptionally well and didn’t let us play.

"We were lucky to get out with a draw and we improved things a small bit the following day. We were delighted to get out with a win."

While many expect Brian Cody's side to overcome Tipperary, the fact that the latter hammered Waterford in their Munster SHC clash is proof that they have a big challenge to deal with.

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