Wexford v Dublin – Goal Glut In Leinster
Wexford v Dublin
After the massacre witnessed on Sky Sports 3 last weekend, viewers should have a close cracker on their sets this week.
While many may look at this fixture and think that Dublin were unlucky not to at least make the All-Ireland final last year so they should brush a spirited Wexford aside, it’s worth recalling that this fixture was a draw last year.
Wexford hurling would appear to be in a much better place this year, with their strength at under-21 level continuing. Their comprehensive win over Kilkenny in Nowlan Park was the kind of barnstormer that sends energy up through the ranks.
Anthony Daly won’t be taking this as a formality and he’ll know that the sunny South East can be an inhospitable place. However, he’ll know that Dublin’s power and conditioning is second to none in the championship, so if a physical game develops the 4/7 favourites should win a wrestling match.
All-action Liam Rushe’s availability is vital to the Dublin cause. He is a key driving force at the centre of this Dublin side. His bravery and ability will be central to any successful Dublin raid, and if his hamstring isn’t up to the battle then Dublin might struggle too. The loss of Danny Sutcliff is a big blow, eased somewhat by the return of Alan McCrabbe to the starting line-up.
Conal Keaney’s posting on the edge of the square is also eye-catching, and he can wreak havoc in that area. As a target man with ability to set up and take scores himself, he can have a big bearing on the game.
Daly’s men may have planned to peak later in the season and trust that they’ll have enough to leave Wexford Park with their Leinster back-to-back dreams intact. They totally outhurled Wexford in last year’s replay in a game where Wexford’d discipline fell asunder.
However, a solid league campaign was backed up by Wexford’s championship dismantling of Antrim. Their inside forward line of Rory Jacob, Conor McDonald and Liam Og McGovern hit five goals between them in that clash. Jacob and McDonald hit 2-2 apiece, and UCD student McDonald is a young player with the potential to turn this tie in the home side’s favour. If Wexford can suplly decent ball inside, then goals are on the cards.
With O’Callaghan feeding of Keaney inside, Dublin have goals in them too. In a game that is difficult to call, the 7/4 about Wexford holds some appeal. However the chance of goals also attracts us towards the Total Goals markets. Wexford hit three in the first 11 minutes against Antrim, and if they can hit three in 70 minutes, we’d fancy the Dubs to hit at least one back.
Sky’s first hurling game featured six goals, and while this weekend’s will hopefully feature loads of three pointers, it should be closer than the 26 point mauling the Cats meted out.