Donegal hurlers on edge of promotion
Following on from their superb win over Wicklow in Aughrim last weekend, the Donegal hurlers can seal promotion to Division 2A this Saturday, April 1, with a win over Meath.
Speaking to the Inishowen Independent, Donegal manager, Mickey McCann said it would be ‘unbelievable for hurling in the county’ but as always; McCann was realistic about the task ahead.
“It would be unbelievable for hurling in the county. To see teams like Offaly coming to Letterkenny to play competitive hurling would be a huge boost.
“They would be a totally different level obviously but I just feel that it would be great to be able to promote the game up here, with big teams like that coming up to play against us.
“Listen, I’ve said from the start of the campaign that I feel like Meath are that wee step ahead of every other team at this level, so they will rightly go into the game as strong favourites.
“I felt like we done fairly well against them earlier in the league, they just finished the game better than we did, so we’ll go there and give it a shot and see where it takes us.”
Donegal were very poor in the 19 point defeat to Wicklow in Letterkenny two weeks ago but McCann believes that the one point win on Sunday was as good as Donegal have been under his watch.
“I would say that is probably as good as we have been in my time, especially when you consider the fact that we had so many men missing.
“The fact that we were able to play without any real pressure probably helped and I’d say Wicklow probably became a wee bit complacent after beating us so well the last day.
“I think we learned an awful lot about ourselves the last day in Letterkenny and we had to tell a few home truths in the changing room afterwards but that was a super performance and the ideal way to bounce back.”
McCann will be able to call upon the services of his fellow clubman, Stephen Gillespie as he returns from honeymoon but despite wanting to go and try to win the game against the Royals, the Donegal manager is adamant that he won’t be taking any risks with any of his other key men.
“Stephen Gillespie will come back into the squad after being away on honeymoon but we won’t be taking any risks with any of the others.
“This would be a nice game to go and win for sure but the championship is more important to us, so we have to look after the injured players ahead of that.
“It will also give us the chance to reward the young boys that stepped in and done so well at the weekend and giving them exposure to a big game like that will do them no harm at all.”
With the Nickey Rackard Cup just a matter of weeks away, McCann could be forgiven for already have one eye on the championship but he believes this game will be ideal preparation for his players.
“We would normally use these next few weeks for a bit of team bonding and some good training but nothing beats playing games and a tough game against a really good Meath side will do us the world of good.”