HURLERS SET FOR BATTLE
Under-21s face Rossies in All-Ireland B clash
WICKLOW’S under-21 hurlers will take to the field in Pearse’s Park, Arklow, this Saturday on the first step on their All-Ireland B championship journey.
It’s a crown that Wicklow managed to win back in 2015 and after having a successful year with the Senior hurlers, manager Séamus Murphy will be out to match the feat of two seasons ago.
It’s a task that the Wexford man accepts will be a difficult one as he acknowledges that over the last couple of years Wicklow have had little or no success at Minor level. However, Murphy says he has a team which is driven and hard-working and will give the Rossies a right crack in Arklow on Saturday.
“We came together as a team seven or eight weeks ago and to be fair the lads have all put in a mighty effort. Obviously when you’re trying to train when the club season is in full flow and a lot of our lads would have dual commitments as well it can be a challenge but we’ve trained every Monday night and the application from everyone has been brilliant.
“A lot of lads would be coming to training having played a tough match on a Saturday or a Sunday and maybe are a bit tired but everyone really has put their best foot forward.
“We’ve played four challenge games since coming together and we’ve learned a lot from them and in fairness our application in all the games was very good. We had two good tussles with Pat’s Senior team which we lost narrowly and then had good wins over Glenealy Intermediates and Ballyboden’s second team on Monday night.
“We rotated the team around so all the lads got a fair chance to stake their claim and we feel we have a fair idea now of the 15 that will line out on Saturday. It’ll take a squad effort though so the lads on the bench will have just as big a role to play.”
Wicklow will probably go into Saturday’s match against the West men has slight favourites considering they have home advantage but Murphy is well aware that a mighty challenge awaits his side.
“We certainly will be going with a one match at a time mantra and won’t be looking past Roscommon. Like ourselves Roscommon might not be considered a hurling heavy weight but they certainly have some very good hurlers and have been living in the shadow of Galway’s success over there so they’ll be fully determined to come down to Arklow and topple us.
“We have a few injuries to contend with as well so we really will have to bring our A game if we’re going to stand a chance.”
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