Sunday 21 January 2018

Fermanagh ace Quigley hits back at 'naive' Brolly

Sean Quigley finished the season as top scorer
Sean Quigley finished the season as top scorer

Declan Bogue

The top scorer in this year's All-Ireland football championship has refuted the claims of RTÉ pundit Joe Brolly that his team danced 'a merry jig' after what he described as being 'annihilated' by Dublin in the All-Ireland quarter-final.

Fermanagh's Sean Quigley finished the season at the top of the scoring charts following Sunday's All-Ireland final. With a total of 3-36, he edges out nearest challenger, Mayo's Cillian O'Connor (3-34), while Dublin's Bernard Brogan could not close the gap, finishing with 6-19.

Quigley also finished as the most prolific player in the National Leagues with 4-49 posted in Fermanagh's promotion charge out of Division 3. However, Quigley's achievement was largely overlooked by the 'Sunday Game' panel's discussion of the year, while Brolly repeated an analogy he made in print about Fermanagh's footballers being akin to plane-crash survivors in the wake of their eight-point defeat to Dublin.

With fellow pundit Pat Spillane countering that Fermanagh scored more than any other team against the eventual champions, Quigley has answered Brolly, stating: "The fact that he is saying that shows how little he actually knows what it takes to go in and play at inter-county football at this level nowadays. He said we got annihilated. There wasn't a word about it. He is very naive in what he is saying."

The Roslea clubman explained, "He comes across as a well-educated man and he should realise the commitment that it takes. Eoin Donnelly went to hell and back to get playing in that game and he definitely didn't go up to Dublin to be happy about getting annihilated, I can guarantee you that."

His manager Pete McGrath believes that Quigley's feats deserve a measure of recognition. "The reality is that Sean Quigley, for any player coming from a county that is not regarded as anywhere near the top echelons, and finished top scorer in the championship is an incredible feat. I think it's something that the team has to be given credit for as well.

"His scoring feats this year in the league and championship tells you something major about the player," he added.

Quigley put Fermanagh's progress in their second season under McGrath into perspective when he said: "When I started playing county football in Fermanagh, we were in Division 4. We had a couple of good beatings in Ulster. Now, look at where we are now? We got to the last eight in the All-Ireland, we are in the top 16 teams in the league placings."

Irish Independent

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