One title doesn’t make a summer

ADRIAN FENLON is not satisfied yet. Capturing the Leinster SHC crown after a seven year wait is a means to an end, just one more step on the road to Croke Park.

And the Rapparees midfielder is keen to stress that point to the county faithful and beyond.

"Wexford fans get hyper when we win something because they're very passionate. They're a great hurling people and we do have a great hurling tradition. We need to bring Wexford hurling back to where it should be, back up with the Kilkennys, the Corks, the Tipperarys.

"Waterford are doing extremely well at the moment and we're trying to do the same. Things are happening down in the south-east.

"We won't get carried away with this although you'd be happy any time you win a Leinster title. We don't have too many of them and we haven't won one since 1997. We might get carried away for a few days but we'll be back training on Tuesday night."

When the panel does regroup tonight they should have much to discuss, not least that opening 35 minutes when Damien Fitzhenry seemed to be the only player manning the barricades in the face of the Offaly attack.

But firm words from John Conran coupled with firm action from Declan Ruth, David O'Connor and Fenlon himself, ensured a wonderful second-half turnaround for Wexford.

And Fenlon had expected as much.

"We came up with a lot of hunger in our bellies," he explained.

"It didn't look like it was going to happen for us in the first-half because we were a good bit off the pace. We just said at half-time that we weren't going to go home losers this time.

"We increased the effort after that. It wasn't fancy hurling, it was hard graft hurling. Offaly are a very good team and a very underrated team. They fought all the way so we were very happy with the win."

Inevitably, Sunday's contest has been compared unfavourably to its cousin from Munster a week earlier. But, with heavy rain pummelling down, this Leinster decider was never going to be a classic.

"The surface was very greasy but I actually think there was some very good hurling there in the conditions," argued Fenlon.

"It's very difficult to play hurling on a day and a pitch like that. Every one of the 35 or 36 players who played there did remarkably well and deserve credit for how they coped."

If most of the Wexford team took their sweet time settling into the game's rhythm then the same couldn't be said of Paul Codd. Introduced ten minutes after the break, the Rathnure attacker lobbed over a point within two minutes.

Such riches from the bench are to be envied and Fenlon points to John Conran as a chief reason for such wealth of talent.

"In fairness, the management have done tremendously well. They've introduced a few young players, the likes of Malachy Travers and Eoin Quigley. That gives a team a good boost," said Fenlon.

"Having the likes of Hopper McGrath, Larry Murphy and Paul Codd on the bench is a great luxury for any team to have and we have young lads we haven't seen too much of yet the likes of Diarmuid Lyng and those boys.

"It's great to have that strength in depth but the important thing is not to get carried away. We have an All-Ireland semi-final to look forward to now and we won't look beyond that."

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