Moore and Regan in the zoneAugust 10, 2012 - 8:57am
THE quotes from Galway captain Fergal Moore and defender Tony Óg Regan stare out from the computer screen. The message from the two men, by and large, is the same . . . as it has been from many of Galway’s fallen heroes over the past two decades.
So, what’s new this time round? What’s the angle? What’s the spin? There is none. And that, in itself, is a powerful message. For it’s not the content that stands out on this occasion; it is the manner in which the two men deliver it.
Both interviews are controlled, emotionless and, to a point, disconnected but the eyes don’t lie. It is as if Moore and Regan are already in the zone, already visualising what has to be done come 3:30pm on Sunday. There is a steely focus and while they recognise this is all part of the process, there is little or no pandering to the media horde that has descended on Athenry Castle for the press night. Just a quiet acceptance that this has to be done.
Yes, there are familiar greetings – and smiles – but psychologically, you sense Moore and Regan are in another place. August 12th, Croke Park. The moment. For it’s all about the ‘here and now’ and not looking beyond those 70 minutes against Cork.
So, if you looking for affirmation that Galway may end the long wait for the Liam McCarthy Cup, you will not find it in these sports pages . . . or, one suspects, anywhere else. That becomes clear from the off.
In any event, questions have to be asked if column inches are to be filled. Among the first, it is pondered if it has been difficult for the Leinster champions to maintain the level of intensity in training since the 2- 21 to 2-11 victory over Kilkenny.
After all, Galway are coming off the back of a five-week break from competitive action . . . where Cork, who defeated Offaly in the All-Ireland qualifiers on the same weekend, have had games against Wexford and Waterford in the interim.
“You know, it has been easy enough,” says Moore. “Once we watched the DVD of the Leinster final, the second half performance left a lot to be desired in lots of aspects of our play. So, it was great to have the five weeks in many ways to work on those things. And we have been working very hard at training since.
“Also, as I said in the aftermath of the Leinster final, that performance wouldn’t be good enough to win an All-Ireland semi-final. So, we are going to have to up the intensity and up the tackle rate and scoring rate to just compete in an All-Ireland semi-final against Cork. Hopefully, we will do that. We have trained hard to do it and it is all geared now towards the game on Sunday.”
Indeed, if trends are anything to go by, the Galway hurlers have shown an ability to improve with every championship game this year – from Westmeath to Offaly to Kilkenny.
“You have seen it, time and time again, there have been many false dawns and you learn to your cost that one swallow doesn’t make a summer,” states the Turloughmore defender.
For more interviews and previews see this week’s Tribune