GRA­HAM HAS MADE US MUCH STRONGER

Irish Daily Mirror - - SPORTS - BY PAUL KEANE

SHANE MUL­LI­GAN says Ca­van have got them­selves a top man­ager in new boss Mickey Gra­ham.

Ex-ca­van at­tacker Gra­ham led Mul­li­nalaghta to a first Long­ford ti­tle since 1950 in 2016 and they’ve since com­pleted a three-in-a-row.

But if they lose to­mor­row’s AIB Le­in­ster club fi­nal then Gra­ham (right) will step down and fo­cus all his at­ten­tions on the Ca­van job.

Mul­li­gan said:

“We would have been com­pet­i­tive be­fore­hand, we’d have been there or there­abouts in Long­ford but un­til Mickey ar­rived the ques­tion would al­ways have been asked, and we would have been ask­ing it our­selves, ‘Are we go­ing to win a se­nior cham­pi­onship?’

“We had been com­pet­i­tive, we were go­ing the right way, we just couldn’t seem to get it all to­gether.”

Un­der Gra­ham’s guid­ance they’ve taken out fan­cied sides like Strad­bally and St Lo­man’s, in 2016, and more re­cently Rhode.

They’ve beaten the once mighty Eire Og twice too and while south-dublin su­per-club Crokes are favourites to­mor­row, Mul­li­gan promised to play with­out fear.

He said: “We won’t be park­ing the bus any­way. We’ll be go­ing to com­pete and to try to get as good a per­for­mance out of our­selves as we can.

“We’re ob­vi­ously de­lighted to be there and it’s a huge oc­ca­sion but the plan is to be right there bang in it at the end.”

Mul­li­gan added: “We’ll give them the same re­spect as we give ev­ery­one else.”

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