Leitrim captain Donal Wrynn prepares to deliver a long ball to the forwards last Saturday. Photo by Willie Donnellan
Leitrim’s relationship with the All-Ireland Qualifiers has never been a good one but captain Donal Wrynn said this Green & Gold team are determined to change that status this year.
Raw disappointment was evident in the Leitrim ranks after Saturday’s 0-24 to 0-10 loss to Roscommon but what was also evident from chatting to the players is the belief that Leitrim can give a good account of themselves in the All-Ireland Qualifiers.
And Leitrim captain Donal Wrynn was no different when he chatted to the Observer long after the final whistle had sounded in Pairc Sean Mac Diarmada - “We go into the Qualifiers now and have a go at it now, hopefully get a draw we can be competitive in and see how far we can go.
“We’re a young team and we do feel we have made progress and there is potential for a lot more progress. We’ll just go into the Qualifiers with a positive mindset and try and get a bit of momentum behind us that will carry into the Qualifiers.”
The Fenagh St. Caillin’s clubman was also in agreement with players like Shane Quinn, Diarmuid McKiernan and Aidan Flynn that Leitrim didn’t perform to the standards they had set themselves - “We tried to bring the fight to them but they are a very strong outfit. I said to the guys that we probably didn’t do ourselves justice and there was probably a feeling too that we made a lot of progress this year.
“Maybe our results mightn’t reflect that but we know ourselves from what we’ve doing in training, what we’ve been doing in challenges games, we know there is a lot of progress there and we want to bear the fruits of that now.
“There is a general feeling there is a lot of progress and maybe a bit of frustration that we weren’t showing that progress and lads wanted to make a bit of a show.”
Asked about his switch into full-forward, Donal said that Leitrim were looking for something different - “We said we’d come here and try something different. Whatever they ask me, I’ll do it. Sligo did it a few years ago, they worked fairly well with a long ball into Pat Hughes. We tried something different but it didn’t come off but at least we tried.”
SEE MORE FROM SATURDAY’S CONNACHT SEMI-FINAL IN NEXT WEDNESDAY’S LEITRIM OBSERVER AND AT WWW.LEITRIMOBSERVER.IE