Tuesday 24 October 2017

Jack Guiney challenges Wexford to become Models of consistency

Jack Guiney
Jack Guiney
Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

Jack Guiney reckons that if Wexford learned anything from the league it's that last year counts for nothing.

They were one of the stories of the 2014 summer, slaloming their way through the back door and collecting wins over Waterford and All-Ireland champions Clare after two epic tussles.

By the time the made they All-Ireland quarter-finals, they were out on their feet. Four games in four weeks left them clutching at air when they clashed with Limerick in Semple Stadium. Still it felt like there was plenty to go on and that Leinster had a new force.

But the spring hasn't been kind. Their Division 1B campaign was disappointing and they hardly raised a gallop when Waterford came to town with promotion on the line.

"Waterford probably caught us by surprise; we didn't expect them to be as good as they were," Guiney says flatly.

There's club championship action on the way in Wexford but after that it'll be all about championship. Wexford open against the runners-up from the round-robin series. They'll most likely face Antrim or Laois but that won't be straight-forward.

"We have a habit of presuming sometimes and we have no right to presume that we're going to be there," he insists.

"Laois put it up to us for long parts of the game when we played them in the league and we were lucky to get out of the Antrim game with a win - we only beat them by a point. So we have no right to presume. We have to focus on the first game."

Guiney was part of the Wexford U-21 team that were caught by Antrim in the 2013 All-Ireland semi-final and, as a result, is reluctant to look further than the first round.

But the prize for a win there is a trip to Nowlan Park to take on Kilkenny.

Guiney describes the prospect as both exciting and daunting. Perhaps it's only then that they'll have a feel for where they are at and whether the lessons of the league and last summer have been learned.

"To be honest, I think we're trying to make amends for getting hammered by Limerick.

"That's probably more where the mindset is. We had a few good games against Clare and Waterford, but the Limerick game is what we went home with last year and that's what was in the backs of our minds coming into the league. That's probably the reason the performance we gave against Limerick was probably the best we gave throughout the whole league.

"I don't think there's a pressure. A lot of Wexford people probably went to matches last year that hadn't been to matches in a number of years.

"It probably showed that we were still a team in development when we went down to Limerick by such a large margin," he offered.

"We don't want to be known as a flash in the pan. I think we have the players."

Irish Independent

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport