Dorgan delight at first season success
WING-BACK on the team that lifted the title for the first time in 2007, Donie Dorgan now holds the unique distinction of having guided Grenagh to county intermediate football championship glory as well.
Needless to say, he was immensely satisfied with his achievement in his first season as manager, having served s a selector last year, but he insisted that the bulk of the credit for their latest triumph has to go to the players.
"These guys are unbelievable, they have had a very long year between the hurling and the football, and you couldn't ask for any more from them in terms of dedication and commitment. They have played something like 13 or 14 championship games, and to win two county titles is absolutely amazing," said Dorgan, who revealed he didn't think it was possible to deliver so many big performances in the one year.
"My main concern was that their legs would give out at some stage, but thankfully it didn't happen, and the drive and energy they showed today was fantastic from start to finish. From No 1 to No 15, it was an excellent team display, and everybody was still working away in the last five minutes, but we needed to do that, because Aghabullogue looked very dangerous when they came back at us near the end.
"We had players dropping back to prevent them from creating an opening for a goal, which could have turned the game around fairly fast, and we were very conscious of the fact that they had finished strongly in their semi-final win over Glanworth," he said
Dorgan admitted he was quietly confident before the game, stating there would be no point in showing up if you didn't have a certain amount of self-belief.
"I knew if we could curtail their danger-men, we'd be there-or-thereabouts, and, in fairness, we managed that, and I suppose our greater experience stood to us.
"The lads were battle-hardened after playing so many championship games this year, and the fact that we'd been here before, winning the final in 2007, was bound to be an advantage as well.
"We settled into the game quicker than they did, but we were just a point ahead at half time, so we felt it was crucial to start well again in the second half. We did hit the ground running after half time, and some of the scores we got from distance were huge blows to Agabullogue, and one point in particular from DD (Dorgan) was absolutely awesome."
The Grenagh boss also acknowledged that John Russell made a big difference when he was brought on at full forward for the second half.
"John gave us a focal point inside, he gave us something to aim at, and his impact was all the more remarkable considering he has been away for most of the year.
"In fairness to the club, they agreed to bring him home from the States for the game, and it proved to be a richly rewarding decision on the day."