Wednesday 22 November 2017

Sutcliffe urges Costello and Kilkenny to join Dublin hurling ranks

Colm Keys

Colm Keys

Danny Sutcliffe has admitted that he went to work on the day of the All-Ireland hurling final between Cork and Clare rather than put himself through the pain of watching as he underlined the depth of his disappointment at Dublin's semi-final defeat to the Rebels.

Sutcliffe – crowned an All Star for the first time over the weekend – believes that depth of feeling is shared by his colleagues as they reflect on a lost opportunity.

But the young St Jude's man is hoping to harness that disappointment and use it to good effect in the coming years.

"I chose to be in work that day (All-Ireland final) because I just couldn't watch it, whereas maybe other years you'd be delighted to be in the semi-final," he said.

"We would have gone in and enjoyed the final, but lads couldn't even look at it, so that's maybe a bit of a sign where we've moved on from being too easily satisfied.

"We knew it was there for us," added Sutcliffe, looking back on their defeat to Cork.

"It was so open this year and that's still annoying me; it was there for us and we didn't take it. The red card (for Ryan O'Dwyer) didn't help – but you saw St Vincent's at the weekend, they lost a man in the first few minutes and went on to win the game.

"We weren't missing our man for that long, so it can be done and should have been done."

Sutcliffe says he is conscious of Dublin's recent inability to put decent seasons together back-to-back.

"We just want to bring consistency to our game more than anything else, but that all starts next year... doing well in the Walsh Cup, doing well in the league and it kind of rolls into the summer.

"But the main thing is being consistent. We don't want to start a bit of a trend, a leap year where we have one bad year (every second year). We just want to do what the footballers are doing and be consistent every year."

Sutcliffe admits he would love if Ciaran Kilkenny and Cormac Costello, in particular, committed to the hurling squad, but says it is not an issue they will get hung up on in the Dublin hurling camp.

"We can't be worrying about people who aren't there. We'd love to have them, but we're not going to put pressure on them. They're only young men, they're younger than myself... Conal Keaney eventually made the move, so you never know. At the moment we can only concentrate on who's here," he said.

"But Cormac is probably the best hurler in Ireland at his age, and footballer, which is the curse up here. We lose these players up here (in Dublin).

"Their heart was with the football this year and it paid off for them. We've a 35-strong panel and we can only concentrate on the people we have here who are committed to it."

Irish Independent

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