JJ Doyle: Wexford Under-21 Leinster hurling success can be platform

Updated: Thursday, 11 Jul 2013 12:28 | Comments

Wexford's Colm Heffernan celebrates at the final whistle Conor McDonald celebrates the late goal that won the game for Wexford
Wexford's Colm Heffernan celebrates at the final whistle Conor McDonald celebrates the late goal that won the game for Wexford


Wexford Under-21 hurling manager JJ Doyle hopes that their Leinster final win over Kilkenny will drive the county on to more success.

The Slaneysiders won the title in dramatic fashion when an own goal by Kilkenny goalkeeper Aaron Duggan in injury time in the second period of extra-time handed the Model County a 1-21 to 0-21 win at Wexford Park.

Doyle told RTÉ Sport: “It’s about winning, it’s about getting that winning feeling. Guys in Wexford now believe they can win."

"The last time we won it was 2002 and then in 2004 the boys won the senior Leinster title so you’d be hoping a lot of these lads would really step up, they’ll have that belief that will drive them on, that we can compete."

“That Kilkenny team had ten guys that were in the All-Ireland final last year, guys involved with their senior team, we stood up to the challenge, we kept fighting and kept fighting and I couldn’t ask any more."

The sides finished level at 0-17 apiece at the end of normal time, with Jack Guiney landing a late free for Wexford.

Doyle admitted that he would have been delighted to take a draw at that stage.

“I’ll be honest with you, I thought we were on our way to Nowlan Park for a replay, which I wouldn’t have been looking forward to,” he said. 

“But I’d have taken it, being a point down before we got the free at the end of normal time. I’d have taken anything at that stage.

"But the guts that Jack showed to take those frees, 21-yard frees out on the sideline, it takes a lot of leadership to take those but that’s what practice does, that chap practices, Ian Byrne practices his frees, Gary Moore practices his sideline [cuts] for days like this, it makes it all worthwhile."

Doyle also revealed that he told substitute Niall Murphy, whose attacking run led to the goal, that he would have a part to play in the outcome.

"I said to Niall Murphy on Sunday morning when we named the team and he wasn’t starting, ‘You’ll come on and you’ll make a difference’, and he came on and he made a brilliant difference,” added Doyle. 

Wexford will play the winners of the Ulster U21 Hurling Championship on 24 August in the All-Ireland semi-final. 

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