Tuesday 17 September 2019

Cavan had two weeks to lick wounds - Donnelly

Mattie Donnelly. Photo: Sportsfile
Mattie Donnelly. Photo: Sportsfile
Michael Verney

Michael Verney

He'd prefer if it wasn't this way but Tyrone skipper Mattie Donnelly is getting used to making an assault on All-Ireland SFC honours through the back door.

Having overpowered Kildare, Mickey Harte's side find themselves one victory away from the 'Super 8s' as Ulster rivals Cavan stand in their way in Clones tomorrow.

The Breffni men are coming in having suffered provincial final defeat while the Red Hand are on a bit of a roll but Donnelly feels it is of little relevance with both sides in touching distance of the last eight.

"It's going to be a quick turn-around, that's the novelty of the back door. You get your opponent on Monday morning and you prepare as well as you can. You have the previous game digested and reviewed and done and dusted early in the week," Donnelly said.

"You have to turn your focus to the next opposition and it requires a lot of detail and focus. Prior to their provincial final, they (Cavan) were targeting the Super 8s, now they've had two weeks to lick their wounds,

"They'll have that buried and will have moved on. They still have a massive chance of getting into the Super 8s, that's how they'll be viewing it, so they'll be coming at us hammer and tongs."

As for his own role - Donnelly was much deeper against Kildare and attacked from the back - the two-time All-Star is happy to do whatever is best for the team.

"It's just the role I'll be given week to week, it depends on the opposition. We were down a few around the middle, the likes of (Pádraig) Hampsey, Tiernan (McCann), Richie (Donnelly), boys coming back from injury, they're big players around that middle section. I'm happy to do a job and provide some solidity around the middle."

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