Huge win for hurl­ing in the west

Wicklow People (West Edition) - - SPORT -

MICHAEL DWYERS man­ager Michael Mo­ran knew his charges were ner­vous in the warm-up and get­ting them in at half-time and ex­plain­ing to them that they were only two points down hav­ing not hurled at all in that open­ing half was key to turn­ing the per­for­mance around.

‘Our lads were very ner­vous start­ing off, I knew even in the warm-up, they were on edge,’ said Michael af­ter the game in Aughrim. ‘A lot of them haven’t played in Aughrim be­fore, so even that was a bit daunt­ing.

‘We set­tled them down at half-time and just pointed out that we hadn’t hurled at all in the first half and we were only two points down, and the wind wasn’t even a fac­tor. They calmed down at half-time and they just sorted them­selves out, and they just worked on the ba­sics. We talked about hook­ing and block­ing and win­ning the rucks, we didn’t win them in the first half, we won them in the sec­ond half, and I think that was the dif­fer­ence.

‘The way the ground is gone, it’s not a time for fancy hurl­ing, it’s a time for be­ing a bit more di­rect. It was a case of get­ting pos­ses­sion and mov­ing the ball as fast as we could,’he added.

Eoin Byrne right­fully col­lected the Man of the Match award but Michael Mo­ran said that so many play­ers lifted their game in that sec­ond half that it al­lowed Dwyers to win bat­tled in the sec­ond which they hadn’t been in the first. But he agreed that Eoin Byrne was su­per.

‘He was su­per. Even on the Carnew side, I though Eoin Ka­vanagh, par­tic­u­larly in the first half, I thought he had a su­perb game, an ex­cel­lent hurler. But, cer­tainly, a lot of our lads – Oisin Bro­gan storm­ing into in the sec­ond half, Bran­don (Ryan) tore into it, Arun Danne in the mid­dle, Jake O’Kelly, Tom (Mo­ran) at cen­tre for­ward and we just started to win places where we weren’t win­ning them in the first half.

‘Dur­ing the rest of the year we looked like our legs weren’t up to it, but to­day we just seemed to be get­ting stronger and stronger as the game went on,’ he added.

Carnew’s switch of Eoin Ka­vanagh to full-for­ward was wor­ry­ing to one ex­tent but it also re­moved a ma­jor hurler from the mid­dle third. Was Michael Mo­ran happy to see him shifted inside.

‘No, I cer­tainly wasn’t, be­cause I was afraid a ball would go in, so we had to counter that, we dropped Bran­don a lit­tle bit deeper just to cover that and thank­fully it worked out,’ he said.

This win should bring mas­sive ben­e­fits to hurl­ing in the west of the county.

‘We were talk­ing about this dur­ing the week – we don’t know when Michael Dwyers won a Mi­nor ‘A’ cham­pi­onship. It’s a long, long time ago. We’re prob­a­bly talk­ing about the time of Seanie Fur­long and Ray Kelly and those guys were hurl­ing so that’s a long time ago.

‘Cer­tainly, for our part of the county it’s just gives an in­cen­tive for lads to keep hurl­ing. Be­cause it is dif­fi­cult, and I know we’re pulling from a big area but this same group have been to­gether from un­der-13 through the Féile and whatever.

‘The par­ents have al­ways been phen­e­me­nal, they’ve al­ways rowed in be­hind us and any­thing we’ve ever asked for they’ve al­ways come in.

This is a thank you for them,’ he said.

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