Former Wexford Senior hurler Rory Jacob was speaking on The Backdoor GAA Podcast recently…
Under Davy Fitzgerald, Wexford have implemented a sweeper system.
When implemented appropriately, the sweeper system is a joy to watch. However, when it doesn’t work, or when it doesn’t change, the system does come under some criticism.
Oulart-The Ballagh club-man and former Wexford sharpshooter Rory Jacob does not believe Wexford are capable of going six on six at the back:
“We have to play with the sweeper. We’re a little bit weak at the back. Even when we have seven at the back, we’re still under pressure. When you look at the Kilkenny game, there was very little pressure placed on the Kilkenny players. I counted at least nine or ten points in the game where Kilkenny players were 40 yards on their own, scoring points, and nobody putting in any challenge.”
“It suits us to play with a sweeper. We need the extra protection. We’re probably not good enough to go six on six at the back and to try and fight it out from there. We would be exploited too much. That’s an area we need to tighten up on moving forward. Today, we conceded 2-27. In any man’s game, we’re still playing with seven backs at conceding 2-27…They’re going to have to up the ante next,” Jacob said on The Backdoor GAA Podcast.
Wexford have won two from three Allianz Hurling League games this year. They defeated Laois and Clare in their two opening games, however, they lost out comprehensively to Kilkenny in their third game.
Jacob believes the Wexford players will be happy enough and that it’s time to try out new players moving into the championship. Despite this, he is not sure if Wexford have found the depth needed:
“It’s probably a matter of trying out new players and trying to see if we have any depth in the squad. To me, there’s not a whole lot of new players there. There are guys that are probably decent hurlers in their own right, but it’ll take them another while to get there. We’ve probably found Conall Flood, but other than that, it’s going to be the same group of players we’ve had under Davy,” he continued.
Wexford will travel to Corrigan Park this weekend where they’ll face Antrim this Saturday at 3 pm. Notably, for Wexford viewers, this game will be broadcasted live on TV.
The full podcast with Paul Shaughnessy, Rory Jacob and PJ Ryan can be viewed below:
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