Other teams may be taking indifferent approaches to the soon-to-be-changed league, but not Wexford, insists joint-captain Matthew O’Hanlon.
Former Wexford manager and current Cork boss John Meyler revealed they have done no hurling in training.
However, Davy Fitzgerald spoke after Sunday’s win over Tipperary of the monetary value associated with reaching a Division 1 quarter-final, while O’Hanlon mentions the first-team options Wexford are developing in these games.
“If you look at the last few years, it was probably the same 19 or 20 players in the league, and this year there has been a bit of a change, with some guys coming out and some other young guys getting promoted to it, so it’s a great opportunity for those guys to get game-time. Ultimately, if you are not going to try them in the league, you are not going to play them in the championship, so it’s great to give as many guys as we can experience at this level to get them up to that level. I think they performed quite well there (v Tipperary). Shane Reck at corner-back, that was his first full league debut and he did really well so it’s all good at the moment.
“We always knew we were trying to build and build for later in the year, so to get another four or five debuts there and get a result, as well, is brilliant for Wexford. We’ll be going into training this week high on confidence, but we have tough games to go. We have Clare in Ennis next weekend and Kilkenny here the following weekend. Hopefully, we can get a couple of results in those and get into the knockout stages.”
O’Hanlon is happy to be playing as much hurling as possible after an injury-ravaged 2018. “I tore my MCL (medial cruciate ligament), tore my calf and pulled my hamstring three or four times. This year I came back in a lot better shape and I think I’m reaping the rewards from it now and I’m able to last the full 70 minutes at a high-octane pace. I’m in good shape. Hopefully I can keep it going now.”