McAuley turns his focus to Ulster and All-Ireland

McAuley turns his focus to Ulster and All-Ireland
By Tom Comack @dgldemocrat

Sean MacCumhaill's, the newly crowned Donegal Senior Hurling champions, are aiming high and their next target is an All-Ireland Club Junior Hurling Championship title.

MacCumhaill's defeated the reigning champions Burt in O’Donnell Park by 2-13 to 2-9. Burt were bidding for a sixth title-in-a-row.

After the final whistle, and amid the wild celebrations, the newly crowned champions’ manager Eamon McAuley said the next target was an All-Ireland Junior title. He feels his team are good enough to win an All-Ireland.

“The plan now is to do well in Ulster and to win the Ulster championship and believe or not, go on and win an All-Ireland junior title,” said the MacCumhaill's boss.

“We believe we have a team good enough to win an All- Ireland junior.”

MacCumhaill's are this week waiting to find out their Ulster first round opponents. The draw for the junior championship is due to be remade this week.

Reflecting on Saturday’s game, McAuley, who guided MacCumhaill's to only their second Donegal title, felt his side were the best team on the day.

But he also insisted that Burt battled to the end and it was only in the closing minutes that he felt they had it in the bag.

“We knew it was going to be tough but we knew we had the team capable of doing it,” he said.

MacCumhaill's went into the tie as favourites on the back of a five-game unbeaten run on the way to the final. The run included a four point win over Burt in the an earlier round.

“We were in no way cocky or confident and I didn't allow any chat about being favourites because against a side of the class and experience of Burt you cannot count on anything,” McAuley added.

MacCumhaill's were much the better team over the 60-plus minutes, but it was only in the closing ten minutes that they finally pulled away

“It was always going to be like that against Burt. They are always going to press you.

“But we went in two up at half-time we knew this was our day. We knew that if we were within range of Burt at half-time we were in with a chance and it was a matter of piling on the pressure in the second half.

“The lads were buzzing at half-time. They were happy, the message was to go at them early in the second half and Aaron (McAuley) got the goal. We were flying after that.”