Quinn braced for 'big test' in final against Portlaoise

The Summerhill goalkeeper Tony McDonnell moves to save under pressure from Adam Baxter of St Vincent's. Photo: Ray McManus / Sportsfile

Conor McKeon

THE last two occasions on which St Vincent's won the Dublin Championship, they subsequently enhanced their season with Leinster titles.

Now, it's Portlaoise in Tullamore in a fortnight's time to make it three from three.

"They're probably at the stage now where they don't benchmark themselves about winning Laois championships, they're looking for Leinster and All-Irelands," reckons Mossy Quinn, looking forward to the prospect of a second provincial final appearance after success in 2007.

"And they were eight points down last week, so they showed the same kind of character we've showed at times where they obviously don't give up and they stick to their gameplan.

"That Moorefield team are good. I obviously haven't seen any of the game today, but for them to come through that match it means we're going to have a big test.

"We'll try and enjoy tonight and the next couple of days before turning our attention to that."

Still, for all Portlaoise's local dominance (this year was their seventh county title on the spin) they have only once landed Leinster honours.

Against that, according to Quinn, experience of winter football is no bad thing to have.


"Playing games at this time of year and against opposition like that ... we played Seneschalstown many years ago and it took us two days to beat them and we knew, we ended up having to go to Navan for a replay.

"That kind of reminded me of that out there, so it certainly resonated with me. Obviously the younger guys don't have that experience, but maybe there's a handful of us in the squad that are thinking, 'We got through this before'. Maybe it's no different this time."

Obviously, the Mickey Whelan/Pat Gilroy influence on the successful 2007/08 team is missing, but Vincent's being Vincent's, they had Tommy Conroy to come in and he has moulded this team into an exciting attacking side.

On the field, they have pace galore and, in the likes of Gavin Burke, Cameron Diamond and Jarlath Curley, Vincent's are enjoying another wave of excellent young players.

"I know I'm definitely older anyway," joked Quinn on the differences between the last Vincent's team to contest a Leinster final and this one.

"How does it compare? Just the young guys, you see their enthusiasm, they are trying to do the right things, they are trying to get better. You see it every night at training and I think they work so hard in training that you see the benefit of it in a game.

"We always say training is the hard part and playing games should be fun and they look like they are enjoying it."