Wexford legend Tom Dempsey believes that the “charismatic” Davy Fitzgerald has brought the buzz back to hurling in the county.
Following the bedding-in period of the Walsh Cup, Fitzgerald’s inter-county career with Wexford passed its first real test with an Allianz League Division 2 victory over Limerick at Wexford Park on Sunday.
And Dempsey has endorsed Fitzgerald’s impact since taking over from Liam Dunne in October, while also urging caution amongst the Wexford faithful.
“I think Wexford people have to keep a little bit grounded because there’s a serious game against Galway at the weekend..."
The 1996 All-Ireland winner told RTÉ Sport: “He has energised the place and there’s a buzz around Wexford hurling at the moment, which everybody is enjoying. I suppose, a new brush sweeps clean really and we’re enjoying the whole thing.
“He’s a very charismatic kind of character. Even for the game, he turned around to the crowd and put the arms up and got a response from the crowd - that was fantastic.
“But we have to be very, very careful here. We beat Limerick but a couple of things went through the game that maybe could have went against us aswell.
“We maybe got the favour of a couple of decisions, but it has been fantastic and the players seem to be responding very clearly to him.”
Dempsey said the match could easily have gone Limerick’s way had they been awarded what looked like a blatant penalty in the second half.
He continued: “As a Wexford man I have to be very honest, I felt it was a penalty. I felt that Mark Fanning did what any goalkeeper would do, but certainly if they had got that penalty the result would have been much different.”
Dempsey also tried to temper fast-rising expectations amongst the Slaneysiders, calling for level heads before the crunch match against Galway at the weekend.
He concluded: “The one thing I always say about Wexford people is that we have to keep our feet on the ground. I think it was Bill Shankly said ‘support me when I win, but if you don’t support me when we lose or draw there’s no point in supporting me at all.’
“I think Wexford people have to keep a little bit grounded because there’s a serious game against Galway at the weekend and that (Limerick) game could have went any way.”