'It was all hands on deck' - Jim Gavin hails Dublin for rallying Cork storm in Super 8s win at Croke Park
Jim Gavin has praised the resilience of his Dublin footballers after they withstood an early barrage of Cork points and then the concession of a third-quarter penalty to run out emphatic 13-point winners.
The All-Ireland champions trailed by four points after ten minutes, and then briefly saw a half-time cushion of six whittled down to just two after Luke Connolly's 46th minute goal.
But each time Dublin had an answer, reflected in a late hat-trick of green flags to bring their goal tally on the night to five.
And as Gavin later reminded: "This Dublin team has been very resilient over the years. They (Cork) got it back to three points in the second half and our lads responded very well to that. It was all hands on deck.”
Overall, the Dublin boss pronounced himself happy with their opening Super 8s foray.
"I think we did well to limit Cork to 1-17, they are a very potent side," he said.
"We might have got a penalty claim (early on) but they looked really strong. We probably took out goal chances a bit better than they did, and that was the difference in the end."
Even in ultimately heavy defeat, his Cork counterpart took solace in the performance.
"Overall I thought they were positive, they showed courage," said Ronan McCarthy. "You come away from the game ... 22 scores to 17, we had nine different scorers, I think, up front. There’s a lot of positives in it.
"If I was to be critical of the team, I would say we’re just a small bit naïve still. But the more we play the top teams, the more we learn from it. Look, I think we’re in good shape coming into the match (against Tyrone) next week."
Yet McCarthy was full of praise for the champions.
"They're an outstanding team," he remarked. “First thing they don’t panic. I think their decision-making is really the key thing. They’re patient, they’ll always wait for the right man to get the shot off – whereas at times we were a bit rushed, a bit hassled, in some of the decisions we made.
"I felt we gave as good as we got for a long time. Obviously they pulled away at the end and it looked quite emphatic. But we just have to accept it."