By Micil Glennon
Offaly manager Ollie Baker says that his side must learn to turn performances into results if they are to improve.
The Faithful County lost their opening Allianz Hurling League Division 1B match to Dublin by a single point, 1-20 to 2-16, in Parnell Park last night.
But having trailed by five at the break, Offaly rallied in the second half, with two goals from Shane Dooley, to bring them to within a point of snatching a draw.
“We didn’t come up here for plaudits for going away with a defeat,” Baker told RTÉ Sport after the game.
“The business end of this game is about results. The history books will show that we lost by a point here tonight and we’ll have to see if there are areas where we can improve and eradicate the errors that caused the defeat.
"We are disappointed and we’ll take an awful lot out of the performance but unless we can turn defeats into victories we’re not learning and that’s what we’re about.”
"Unless we can turn defeats into victories we’re not learning" - Ollie Baker
The midlands side lost to Wexford in the opening round of the Walsh Cup while Dublin went on to win the pre-season tournament.
The difference in match fitness was apparent in the opening half as Anthony Daly’s men dominated but Baker was pleased with the second-half response.
He said: “We’ve spoken about leaving performances on the field, we want to get the spirit back into these guys again and get the supporters behind us as well.
"In fairness to the lads they showed great spirit. We’ve a lot of new lads there tonight and they coped quite well.
“For a first game in the league I thought it was cracking game of hurling, both teams gave everything. I can see how much it means to the Offaly players but the Dublin players gave everything as well.
"I think we delivered a very entertaining game this evening."
Offaly host Wexford on 10 March while Dublin travel to Antrim on the same day.