Wednesday 16 January 2019

O'Grady: Dubs can show their quality

THE Dublin hurlers are ready to grasp the "golden" opportunity of proving they’re a top-four team, according to former manager Michael O’Grady.

O’Grady, who now chairs the Friends of Dublin Hurling, is increasingly confident that the Sky Blues can follow up their league heroics by taking Galway’s championship scalp in tonight’s Leinster SHC semi-final at Tullamore (7.0).

“I think it’s last chance saloon for this Galway team. Every year they have failed at some hurdle,” he told the Evening Herald. “They are under massive pressure (tonight). Dublin don’t have that same pressure.” While Dublin were busy creating Allianz League history, Galway missed out on a final place despite beating both finalists, wracked by injuries and inconsistent form. O’Grady cited their 18-point capitulation at home to Tipperary as a “disaster – that should never happen a team – so they are brittle in places.”

The Limerick native declared: “This Dublin team have learned an awful lot, in the last 12 months especially. “They’re a stronger physical team, but I think the biggest change is their mental strength. They are no longer looking to the line to win matches. “But this will be the real test for Dublin. This is championship hurling – not knockout but as good as, in one sense. The Dublin lads want to show to themselves, first of all, that they are among the top four or five teams.

“As the week goes on, I am getting more and more convinced that they will win.”

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