herald

Monday 21 August 2017

shane solid as a rock

SOLID as the concrete on the Navan Road - Shane Lyons, the St Oliver Plunkett's/Eoghan Ruadh defender.

He's the prince of full-backs. He graced the Fermanagh jersey.

Now, in his number three shirt, he's hoping it can be third time lucky in the big Bank Holiday Monday night blockbuster.

Parnell Park will be heaving when Plunkett's run out to face the All-Ireland champions, St Vincent's.

He wasn't aboard when Plunkett's lost the replayed final against Kilmacud Crokes on a night of high drama in 2008.

Dermot Kelly was the manager. He had brought the team from the depths of Division 2 to their first Dublin SFC final.

Three years later, Shane was playing as St Brigid's had two points to spare over their Navan Road cousins.

Mick Galvin had taken over as manager. And as he has done on so many occasions, Lorcan McCarthy came off the Brigid's bench to make a telling impact.

Back then, Shane had good company at the back door. It included Michael Brides and Conor Evans.

He had been living in the area and he was delighted when the chance came to join Plunkett's.

He has been a most welcome addition. He's not inclined to give away any loose change, even against Las Vegas like forwards.

He does the job simply. You could put your house on him.

PILLAR

He has been a pillar as Plunkett's have made it back to the big time.

He's counting down the hours to the duel under the lamps with the Marino Marvels.

"Every footballer wants to play on these occasions. There was a great atmosphere at the semi-final, and it will even be better for the final," he says.

He relishes the quality of the Dublin championship. "There are always a number of teams in contention.

"Every single game is difficult. You can never take any match lightly. None of these matches are easy. They are all tough battles."

Plunkett's have beaten two of the giants, Kilmacud Crokes and Ballymun Kickhams. They also defeated St Anne's and then St Jude's in the semi-final.

"We knew Jude's was going to be a tough battle. It was tight.

"I know the score-board doesn't reflect how close it actually was. The difference was that we took our chances at the right time, and now it's all about getting it right for the final."

Industry and a sound structure will be at the core of the Plunkett's push to secure a historic county crown.

"We'll just have to go out and work hard.

"You have to respect the opposition and you then have to put in the effort yourself to try and get over the line."

Vincent's possess a cluster of top notch forwards, among them Mossy Quinn and Diarmuid Connolly, the Batman and Robin of the Dublin Senior Football Championship.

But Shane, or his Plunkett's colleagues, are not concerning themselves with individuals. It's the collective currency that adds up to make the sweetest sum.

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