Burke fears 'cold' route to Dubs clash
WHILE Galway's entry into the Leinster Senior Hurling Championship has been widely lauded, David Burke doesn't necessarily believe the Tribesmen need to follow suit at underage level.
Burke will line out for Galway in Saturday's All-Ireland U-21 semi-final clash with Dublin at Tullamore, in what will be Galway's first match at that grade this year, while the Dubs have a successful Leinster campaign behind them, with wins over Kilkenny and Wexford.
"Dublin have played against Kilkenny and Wexford. We're kind of cold in one sense," said Burke. "But if it goes right for us on the day and we get a result, it won't seem so bad. If you lose, you can say it's the worst preparation but if we win, people say it is great preparation."
Galway pushed eventual All-Ireland champions Clare all the way in last year's semi-final -- with Joe Canning hitting 4-7 in that match. But with the Portumna man now overage, Burke and fellow senior panellist Richie Cummins, will be expected to pick up the slack.
"Players will be thinking that they have to raise their game (in Canning's absence)," said Burke. "He's a great player, but we have six forwards now and there's no one else you can count on. They're going to have to stand up and be counted and get a few scores. It's hard to lose a player like that alright."
Burke also called on John McIntyre to remain in charge of the county's senior hurling squad in the wake of their All-Ireland quarter-final defeat to Tipperary.
"A lot of people in Galway would be delighted to see him stay on for another year. He's a great manager and there's a good set-up there. We would be happy to see him stay on. Anything else would be a backwards step," said Burke.
Despite their lack of competitive matches to date, Galway head into the game as clear favourites -- due in part to the injuries of Dublin forwards David Treacy and Shane Stapleton. Paul Schutte has also been ruled out, while Rory O'Carroll is unavailable due to his involvement with the county's senior footballers.
"Dublin had great preparation playing in the games against Kilkenny and Wexford, whereas we would be going into the game fairly cold. We wouldn't know what our 15 is, so it's 50-50," said Burke.