‘Thanks to the girls for all the hard work’

Wicklow People (West Edition) - - SPORT -

VAL­LEY­MOUNT man­agers Keith Traynor and Dar­ragh Cal­laghan were two sat­is­fied gaffers on Satur­day af­ter­noon when a project that started at last year’s Val­ley­mount GAA din­ner dance was fin­ished in su­perb style with the win­ning of the county In­ter­me­di­ate crown.

‘Most of the work was done at the Val­ley­mount din­ner dance,’ said Keith Traynor when asked how him­self and Dar­ragh were ap­proached about the job. ‘The two lads that started the work last year, they weren’t able to com­mit this year, Dar­ragh and Pat. Dar­ragh was off play­ing this year and Pat wasn’t able to com­mit with work. They were kind of look­ing for peo­ple and it just kind of worked out. We worked it around our train­ing as well, if one of us couldn’t make it the other one could,’ he said.

Dar­ragh Cal­laghan of­fered his in­sight into the job in­ter­view.

‘Pres­sured into it. Felt bad for say­ing no. It’s been a very good year,’ he said.

Keith Traynor said that hav­ing played St Pat’s and hav­ing watched their semi-fi­nal that they learned a lot from them and that they were able to come up with tac­tics to try and get the bet­ter of them on the big day.

‘We learnt a lot from play­ing them, and the semi-fi­nal. That was a five-point win, it was fierce close that day, we learnt a lot about Pat’s that day, and, ac­tu­ally, Pat’s lost two big play­ers to the Se­nior team af­ter that semi-fi­nal as well so that was a mas­sive help to us, too.

‘And the tac­tics that we worked on worked out bril­liantly on the day. It was a big boost to me on the side­line see­ing that hap­pen (Aimi Healy hav­ing to come out the field to try and win pos­ses­sion).

‘We were still un­der pres­sure un­til the very end there. Pat’s kept on top of us, so I wasn’t re­ally look­ing at the score­board to be hon­est. You can never un­der­es­ti­mate Pat’s,’ he added.

One player who stood out on the day on what was a re­mark­able team per­for­mance was mid­fielder Sive Byrne who cov­ered acres of ground and cause se­ri­ous headaches for Pat’s.

‘She’s a phe­nom­e­nal ath­lete,’ said Dar­ragh. ‘The ground she cov­ers is amaz­ing. She cov­ers the same ground as an in­ter-county foot­baller,’ he added.

Low num­bers at the start of the year didn’t ham­per prepa­ra­tions too much. The lads said that the nor­mal things of life had to be got out of the way and then once the league fi­nal against Clara was over the real work be­gan with cham­pi­onship in mind and the de­feat of 2018 in the back of the minds.

‘There was a drive (af­ter the de­feat last year), it’s just the way it worked out with Leav­ing Cert and school and girls in work, it was just un­lucky at the start of the year but from the league fi­nal on the num­bers picked up and ev­ery­body com­mit­ted and it was great be­cause you were able to work on what­ever you wanted to work on and you still had the num­bers to do it,’ they said be­fore of­fer­ing their thanks to a won­der­ful group of play­ers.

‘Thanks to the girls for all the hard work they put it and thanks to the club in Val­ley­mount for every­thing they did. We never had a prob­lem,’ they said.

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