DUBS DENT FLAT DEISE

Dermot Keyes reports

Jake Dillon pondering in the aftermath of Sunday's defeat to Dublin at Walsh Park. See Sport 2-4 for further coverage of Sunday's Division 1A NHL encounter. | Photo: Noel Browne

Jake Dillon pondering in the aftermath of Sunday's defeat to Dublin at Walsh Park. See Sport 2-4 for further coverage of Sunday's Division 1A NHL encounter. | Photo: Noel Browne

Hysteria didn’t exactly take off like a bog fire across the county despite an admittedly brilliant start to Waterford’s National Hurling League, and that’s been no bad thing at all. Optimism? Yes. Hype? None that I’ve noticed anyway.
On Sunday last, there was disappointment rather than despondency in the wake of Waterford’s NHL defeat to Dublin on Sunday, which brought the Deise’s 11-match unbeaten run in the League to and end.
But, in keeping with the opinion of most leaving Walsh Park, Waterford manager Derek McGrath had “no quibbles or qualms” with the Dubs’ 0-19 to 0-14 victory.
“I thought Dublin outplayed us all over the pitch and were full value for their five-point win. I thought we were outfought all over the field and I thought we were relatively flat – we’ve absolutely no excuses. Fair play to Dublin; I’d been saying it all week they were a good team and when you say that, you’re accused of bigging up a team, but I think we got what we deserved today.”
Any reasons why the team were so flat? “Well, I wouldn’t be to decipher it straight away, but we had prepared exceptionally well all week, as we had for the first three matches; the atmosphere in the Granville was extremely good, so I’m just not sure, but any analysis of ourselves and why we were so flat has to be counterbalanced by how good Dublin were…it might allow people to tune into the fact that any team can beat anyone on a given day, that’s what we’ve been saying, we’ve been beating that drum but maybe, perhaps people might listen to that now.”

“No qualms” from Derek McGrath as Waterford’s unbeaten run ends.

Derek McGrath added: “I think, for the first time, you probably saw surfacing a young team… sometimes, when things aren’t going extremely well – that ability to dig in that Kilkenny showed (in Cork on Saturday night), that’s what we’re trying to build in our squad; we had that last week at the end of the Tipperary game, but we were chasing this game the whole way through.
“We were very disappointed with our first half, even being a point up at half-time, I thought we were very lucky to be a point up at half-time. I’m disappointed, not with the effort, but with the flatness of it.”
The Deise boss re-iterated his contention that “we’re not a team like Kilkenny or Cork or Clare or Galway that can ease off in anticipation of going to a quarter-final…so we have absolutely zero excuse. There was nothing registered in our minds about already being through; I think the day Waterford takes that approach and we start patting ourselves in the back for reaching a League quarter-final, then we’re going to be in serious trouble.”
There’ll be little time for a major post-mortem, as Galway visit Walsh Park on Sunday next, a match in which McGrath and co will hope to see a major response from their charges.
“When we’re one per cent off where we should be in terms of our work rate, we’ll be beaten out the gate as we were today.” With that in mind., expect a big push from the League champions next Sunday when the Tribesmen come a calling.

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