Cuala manager Mattie Kenny

MATTIE Kenny says appetite is no issue after Cuala reached the Leinster club hurling semi-final following a 2-20 to 1-16 win over Dicksboro at Parnell Park last weekend.
Cuala had a slow start to their Dublin campaign having produced a clean sweep of titles last season but showed tip-top form against Dicksboro, and Kenny believes his players shouldn’t be lacking the hunger to win at this time of the year.
“We are only three years on the go so everyone gets their wind up when they are trying to win something. These guys have been a long time waiting to get to this level so now that we are at this level, we need to keep pushing on,” Kenny said after the game.
“Any club player worth his salt should be really looking forward to playing September, October, November because that is the time you are really at the business end of competitions. Hunger or appetite shouldn’t be an issue with these guys.”
Cuala enjoyed a good start to the match but had to work hard to fight off a strong challenge from Dicksboro in the second half.
“It was a good game; a good standard of hurling,” Kenny continued. “Dicksboro brought a big challenge, as I knew they would. Our lads played well. We started with the wind at our backs and built up a lead.
“We knew Dicksboro were going to come at us in the second half. Sometimes when you are playing into the breeze, you get a little bit more space to attack into. Our forwards I thought worked really hard.”
Cuala will play St Martin’s in the semi-final and Kenny knows his side will face another tough test against the Wexford champions.
“St Martin’s had a good win against Oulart [the Ballagh] a couple of weeks ago.
“They are a very young, pacey side and they are going to be another big, big test for us. At this time of year, everyone you come up against are county champions, they are all winners. We will be expecting a huge battle again but, at the same time, we are looking forward to it,” Kenny concluded.
Kenny also praised the performance of the new poster boy of Dublin hurling and football, Con O’Callaghan.
The 21-year-old has been a revelation since breaking into Jim Gavin’s squad and was rewarded for his contribution to the footballers’ three in a row success by picking up the young player of the year award at the All-Stars ceremony two days before the win over Dicksboro.
“We had him tucked away in bed pretty early on Friday night,” Kenny quipped. “Con, as well as all the forwards, did a good day’s work for us so we are delighted with him.
“He’s leading the line very well for us and getting onto the ball. He’s a really good target guy for us and chips in with a few scores every day.”

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