Waterford’s Noel Connors believes the Déise can draw solace from their refusal to throw in the towel in the closing stages of Sunday’s Munster final.
The corner-back says this Waterford team have been castigated in the past over their apparent lack of steel, but such a criticism could not be levelled at Derek McGrath’s charges departing Semple Stadium.
“The one good thing was our ability to keep the heads up and keep driving on regardless of going a few points down, giving away a few silly points and hitting some silly wides,” he said.
“At times in the past, we would have been criticised for letting the heads drop and throwing in the towel, but we showed some fantastic steel and the motivation that Derek [McGrath], Dan [Shanahan] and Fintan [O’Connor] have instilled in us.”
Encouraging too was their defensive effort. Tipperary failed to raise a single green flag, while talisman Seamus Callanan was rendered scoreless from play. “I know everyone will say we didn’t concede a goal, but to be honest, I would like to have conceded less points, which might be a bit naive on my part considering we were playing probably the best team in the country. But you do have to be ambitious.
“We won’t be throwing in the towel now and saying this is it for Waterford, that Waterford’s year is over. Far from it. The ultimate aspiration at the start of the year was to be there come the first Sunday in September and that hasn’t changed.”
Connors insists Waterford need greater economy in front of goal if Dublin are to be overcome in a fortnight, having hit 13 wides against Tipp.
“Probably the wides more than anything else is what we need to work on. Ultimately, you want to be in single figures. We need to minimise those as much as possible. Carrying the ball into the tackle, offloading and looking for a man in a better position is something I’m sure we’ll be looking at too.”
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