Wednesday 21 August 2019

'We have to hit the ground running' - Dublin's David Treacy wary of Laois ahead of 'massive test'

David Treacy launches the Dublin jersey takeover. Photo: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile
David Treacy launches the Dublin jersey takeover. Photo: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile

Cathal Dennehy

Sports writers have a wretched habit of attaching too much weight to a single win, of heralding 70 minutes of hurling as some cataclysmic event that will shape a team's future - for better or worse.

As such, it's an obvious hook to dangle in front of David Treacy, to hold up Dublin's giant-killing win over Galway as proof of a hypothesis: if they beat the 2017 champions, does it prove they can beat anyone? The only problem: he's not biting.

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"I genuinely don't think so," says Treacy. "We needed to win and we did that but ultimately, we didn't get to a Leinster final and it'd be a complete waste of time if we don't do it this week. It will all have been for nothing."

The surest way to veer off the road is to become transfixed by the rear-view mirror, and Treacy spent enough time looking at that game to give it any more thought. Not when he's ready to again contribute to Dublin's cause.

June was a tough month. In the build-up to Dublin's game against Carlow he pulled a muscle in his hip. "I was like, 'oh shit.' I've done so many hamstrings I could tell you the exact [recovery time] if it was that, but it was one I hadn't faced before."

As the Dubs coasted past Carlow and prepared for that kill-or-be-killed game with Galway, all he could do was bide his time, adjust his gym sessions and wade into the Irish Sea as often as possible to keep a lid on inflammation.

Now he's back, ready to rejoin Dublin's attack for their All-Ireland preliminary quarter-final against Laois in O'Moore Park today, the prize on offer a clash with Tipperary next Sunday. "We have to hit the ground running," says Treacy. "It's going to be a massive test."

Things have been ticking along nicely since the Galway game, but complacency is not something Dublin manager Mattie Kenny will tolerate, something Treacy knows well having worked under him at Cuala.

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"If you're happy with where you are then you've taken a step back," says Treacy. "Mattie is the first to tell you that. There have been steps taken, better performances, but we're by no means the finished product. The mindset is how can we get better the next day?"

It's a mentality he always embraced, one he maintains as he closes in on his 30th birthday.

Treacy was first introduced to the sport by his father, John, who grew up in Churchtown and, after moving to Killiney in the late '80s, helped Cuala to Dublin senior titles in '89, '91 and '94. Treacy juggled football and hurling until U-21 level, at which point he took the road less travelled. He thinks back to his childhood, how hurling seemed so obscure on the southside - and how things differ today.

"I get no better joy than seeing a group of lads walking down the road with hurls in their hands. Any inspiration we can give to young hurlers or camogie players, it's massive," he says.

He knows the effect it could have if they could do to Tipp what they did to Galway, but to even have that chance next weekend means thinking only of today. "We know we have to bring our A-game," he says.

David Treacy was speaking at the launch of the Dublin GAA jersey takeover, which will see the 20x20 campaign logo replace the AIG logo on jerseys for upcoming fixtures.

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