herald

Saturday 24 August 2019

Form of Eamonn and Conal gives hurlers hope

 

In the thick of the action: Conal Keaney proves a handful for Wexford defenders
In the thick of the action: Conal Keaney proves a handful for Wexford defenders

Parnell Park will hopefully be rocking next Saturday as Dublin aim to keep their provincial and All-Ireland ambitions alive when they meet Galway in a match of huge significance to both counties.

The stakes couldn't be higher for Dublin but they should enter the game with a fair degree of optimism, according to Na Fianna senior manager, Declan Feeney.

"The big positive from my perspective has been the form of Eamonn Dillon, who has improved with every game.

"He struggled to win ball the first day out against Kilkenny and while he started winning possession against Wexford the next day, that didn't translate into scores.

Crucial

"Thankfully, he was able to combine the two last Sunday week against Carlow and it just seems to be coming right for him at this crucial time.

"He's certainly getting better with every game and the same could be said about Conal Keaney.

"He is still such an important part of this team and it's great for Dublin to have him back fully fit and leading the line so well.

"You would also have to be pleased with how the backs as a unit have performed and they have generally been rock solid in the three games so far.

"Of course, they conceded a couple of silly goals against Wexford, ones that they would have been very disappointed to give up but they stemmed more from individual errors than anything else.

"Galway could look to put them under pressure again next Saturday, forcing errors close to goal. You would think that Dublin have learned from their mistakes and in fairness, they have all played very well up to this point," added Feeney.

Given the incremental progress that Dublin have made under both Pat Gilroy and Mattie Kenny, failing to advance to the All-Ireland series would be a bitter pill to swallow for both the players and supporters.

"I think that it would be a massive setback if they didn't advance and Mattie (Kenny) was keen to stress at the time of his appointment that his tenure was a continuation from last year and not a totally new start.

"The fact that Dublin are at home in a packed Parnell Park should certainly help them and it's real knock-out hurling from them next Saturday.

"It was the same for them down in Carlow last Sunday week and they managed to deliver the required result and performance and my gut feeling is that they'll manage to produce the same against Galway in four days' time,"said Feeney.

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