Victorious DCU boss rails at ineligibility of Walsh and Boyle
THE result of DCU's Sigerson first round proper victory (0-17 to 0-9) over Queen's was, given the Belfast side's total failure to use a howling first-half gale to instigate a lead, wholly predictable ... yet the major talking point at St Clare's yesterday was Niall Moyna's post-match reaction to the DRA ruling on Aidan Walsh and Michael Boyle's non-eligibility for this – or any other – year's competition.
"We are surprised and disappointed," reflected DCU manager Moyna after his team had set up an all-Dublin quarter-final tie with UCD next week thanks to a Michael Murphy-inspired win, although he went on to express much stronger sentiments on the ruling and, indeed, the GAA in general.
"It is disappointing in a number of ways. That man (Walsh) is going out to teach physical education and I certainly won't be encouraging him to promote Gaelic games, and I mean that. In my classes from now on, I have no intention of promoting Gaelic games.
"There are people who must spend all of their time thinking of ways for students not to play and if they would spend one tenth of their time figuring out how to get more people to play inter-collegiate football, they would be serving their time much better."
Moyna also revealed that here had been widespread disgust at the scenario from within his squad, none more so than yesterday's nine-point hero and Donegal All-Ireland-winning captain, Murphy – a flat-mate of both Walsh and Dublin's Paul Flynn.
"Michael Murphy is going to be a PE teacher, so is Paul Flynn and Aidan," he explained. "Why should they promote Gaelic games if that is they way they are going to be treated?
"Michael Murphy was disgusted. After the meeting he said that if there was ever an excuse to give up Gaelic games, tonight was certainly it," added Moyna, who reckoned that there were "18 or 19" other students in total who had fallen foul of the same retrospective implementation of the rule.
Luckily for Moyna and DCU though, Murphy was not one of them after his second mesmeric performance in a week yesterday, a fitting encore to his one-man show against Kildare in Croke Park last Saturday.
"He's different class," gushed his manager. "When you have someone like him on your team, he is the go-to man and obviously, he performed very well today. Since he won the All-Ireland, he is a transformed man, the weight of the world is off his shoulders.
"He leads by example."
A gritty first-half display from DCU, featuring two points from Dean Rock, ensured they had a one-point advantage at half-time (0-7 to 0-6), despite playing against a disruptive wind while Queen's were confined largely to frees from James Kielt.
From there, DCU and Murphy took over, sending a succession of long balls into their 'bear on the square,' who – besides a haul of nine points – directly set up another two in the second half.
However, it was the aftertaste from the Walsh/Boyle scenario which lingered longest for Moyna.
"It is very disappointing for him (Walsh). He's devastated and so is Michael. This is his final year, he has played in three Sigersons and basically he has been told he is not a student. The retrospective application of the rule really annoys us," he concluded.
DCU progress to face UCD in the next round and a potential head-to-head between Donegal star Murphy and Dublin/UCD full-back Rory O'Carroll.
SCORERS – DCU: M Murphy 0-9 (4f); D Rock, C McGuinness 0-2 each; A McFadden, P Flynn, J McCarron, D Smith 0-1 each. Queen's: J Kielt 0-5 (4f); D O'Hare 0-2 (2f); C Sheerin, S McArdle 0-1 each.
DCU: J Farrelly; W Lowry, J Cooper, C Daly; J McCarthy, J Brady, M Quinn; F Ó Curraoin, P O'Hanlon; P Flynn, B Donnelly, A McFadden; D Rock, M Murphy, P Ryan. Subs: D Smith for Donnelly (14), D Byrne for McCarthy (38), C McGuinness for Ryan (41), J McCarron for Rock (50), E Doherty for Flynn (56).
QUEEN'S: M Jackson; P Quinn, G McGovern, O Costello; J O'Reilly, R Mallon, B Cox; J Keilt, C Sheerin; C Rafferty, N McKenna, R Jones; D O'Hare, S McArdle, E McVerry. Subs: C Kearns for Sheerin (h-t), S Warnock for McGovern (ht), H Conlon for McArdle (ht), R Rafferty for McKenna (50), R Murray for McVerry (26).
REF: N Mooney (Cavan).