Friday 28 July 2017

'This team has to deliver now' - Burke

Burke: Hoping Galway can add to their league silverware against Wexford. Photo: Sportsfile
Burke: Hoping Galway can add to their league silverware against Wexford. Photo: Sportsfile

Michael Verney

Having put 33 points past an Offaly side playing with two sweepers for long stages, Galway captain David Burke knows that Wexford will pose a different defensive proposition in their Leinster SHC final clash in Croke Park on July 2.

With Offaly sitting back deep, Galway were forced to dictate affairs from distance and won comfortably despite never leaving second gear. It was a far cry from their drawn semi-final seven years ago when the Faithful took them on from start to finish.

Davy Fitzgerald's Model side will, once again, likely employ Shaun Murphy as a sweeper and having been put to the sword on home soil during their league ecnounter, Burke insists that they must keep their composure to bring the Bob O'Keeffe Cup back west for the second time.

"We panicked maybe a small bit, played into their hands, played fierce narrow. That was something obviously we were allowed to work on after that and it helped us go on in the league," Burke said of what was then a surprise defeat in Pearse Stadium back in February.

"Maybe it gave us a bit of an eye-opener in terms of what teams are trying to do. The advantage of playing them already is we know how they set up, but you have to perform and win your battles.

"You have to do that regardless and work around what they're doing. We'll focus on what we're doing: we're good at going forward, good at attacking, and it should be a good game.

"They seem to be buying into what's going on, they've players who are playing well and up to their ability and potential. We need our big players to be playing well and bang in a couple of goals."

It's five years since Galway won their first Leinster crown and the influential St Thomas midfielder believes it's time for the Tribesmen to add more silverware to their recent league success.

"This team really has to deliver now, I suppose," said Burke.

"There's pressure on everyone, every day, going out. We know ourselves on any day we can put it up to anyone. It's just about getting over the line the next day no matter what and going the direct route and getting into an All-Ireland semi-final.

"The prize is massive, you're taking out another quarter-final there that's needless. It's going to be a huge 70 minutes, it'll go down to the wire.

"With all the big teams, it's nip and tuck and goes down to the last five minutes. I've no doubt it will the next day as well."

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