Three things we learned from the weekend’s GAA action

Three things we learned from the weekend’s GAA action

Dublin defeated Derry in a dour NFL encounter.

Peter McNamara selects three things we learned from the weekend’s GAA action.

1 Dublin’s major flaw - NFL

Last year, Jim McGuinness targeted the fact Dublin are not adept at counteracting blanket defensive systems and earned a spot in the All-Ireland final due to the shrewd gameplan they devised to negate Jim Gavin’s side.

Mickey Harte and now Brian McIver have followed a similar path to Donegal this season in the league while taking on Dublin at headquarters and given how effective the general strategy has been for the aforementioned outfits it could be a trend Gavin’s army have to contend with more often.

Trouble is, Dublin are yet to announce themselves as a unit capable of dismantling massed rearguards.

And this may come back to haunt them later in 2015.

On each occasion the three northern sides essentially parked the bus, Dublin, so often renowned for working through the lines and accumulating huge tallies, had unconvincing answers to the questions they were posed.

The Metropolitans may alleviate such a potentially stressful issue by utilising the flanks with the likes of Jack McCaffrey careering into wide areas in attempts to dissolve the barricade of bodies.

That being said, Dublin had at least 12 players in their own half on a number of occasions as well on Saturday so it is not as if they should be considered totally innocent when the juries cast their judgements on the matches they are contesting.

Despite their reputation, Dublin seem as if they have more chinks in their armour than is thought to be the case.

Three things we learned from the weekend’s GAA action

Cork had a dramatic late win against Mayo at the weekend.

2 Cork are making a mockery of pre-season predictions - NFL

With 9-78 on the scoring board in the top-tier and 10 points to boot, Cork are storming through their Allianz NFL Division 1 campaign in clinical fashion.

Before a ball was kicked in the competition, the Rebels were expected to struggle in the section.

Yet, Brian Cuthbert’s men have only lost to Donegal in Ballyshannon and even that was by a solitary point.

Cork are the highest scorers in the top-flight in terms of both goals and points registered and will be a major force to be reckoned with in the championship provided these standards are built on in the coming months.

Cork are leaving the many doubters with egg on their faces and should kick-on too.

Three things we learned from the weekend’s GAA action

Waterford's Pauric Mahony playing the best hurling of his career so far.

3 Waterford on a roll - NHL

Derek McGrath deserves an abundance of credit for the way in which the Waterford hurlers are progressing.

Generally, across the country, the Déise were not viewed as a side worthy of inclusion on the shortlists for honours.

However, they are creeping up into that bracket of teams that the front-runners such as Kilkenny and Tipperary will need to be mindful of in the summer.

Of course, Waterford have a lot of fine-tuning to conduct yet before being regarded as a top-class brigade but their development is fascinating all the same.

Pauric Mahony is in the form of his career to date and their youthful fearlessness is refreshing to witness.

McGrath’s astute management and the belief he has in his players has been invaluable.

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