Offaly hurling boss Brian Whelehan says he is disappointed to have been involved with his side’s performance as they fell to a relegation play-off loss to Antrim.
Offaly led by three points at the break in Ballycastle but succumbed to a second-half surge by the home side to lose 1-18 to 1-14.
The Faithful County now face into another decider, against the winners of the 2A play-off between Kerry and Carlow, who meet next Sunday.
The double All-Ireland winner, who is in his first season in charge of the side, told Midlands Sport: “It was a very, very disappointing, I won’t even say performance from an Offaly team, very disheartening performance and it’s one that I’m very disappointed to be involved with.
“When it came down to the real fight, when the game was in the balance, Offaly didn’t want it today.
"We’re in the quagmire and it’s going to be very hard to get out of it" - Brian Whelehan
“[Antrim] could have won by more ‘cos they missed a few frees as well.
“[The full-back line] was the only line that stood up, but after that we lost every other battle on the field. When you are losing in that many positions, I suppose it’s going to be inevitable that the opposition will tag on scores.
“I don’t know if it was fitness or what, I feel it was fight. It was a question of whether we really wanted to win today and the performance showed that we didn’t.”
Asked how he would lift his troops for the next game against the Divison 2A winners, Whelehan said: “It’s going to be very hard after a performance like that to see where we can go from here but we’ll just have to try and pick it up.
“But make no mistake, we’re in the quagmire and it’s going to be very hard to get out of it and if we’re not very careful we could find ourselves in a very bad situation very, very quickly.
“We’re [already] in a bad situation and it’s not looking good at the moment.”