Four Things We Learned From Wexford’s Challenge Match Against Tipperary

Both the Wexford Senior hurlers and Tipperary had a challenge game today…

The game took place in Carrick Swans GAA Club in Carrick on Suir, Tipperary.

It was Tipperary who ran out 2-22 to 0-25 winners on Sunday.

Although it was just a challenge game for Darragh Egan and the Yellowbellies, we did learn some things from the game.

Faith in youth:

As Wexford Weekly columnist Aidan Delaney noted in last week’s column, one of the major criticisms levelled at the previous management team was their overreliance on the core of players who had served the Purple and Gold with distinction over the years.

Just like last week’s test against Laois, Darragh Egan has trusted youth once again in this challenge game. Young players such as Kyle Scallan, Corey Dunbar, and Conor Hearne all started the game. More youth, and non-established inter-county players, were given a chance off the bench; Cian Byrne, Billy Dunne, Liam Schokman, and Aodhan Doyle all received game time.

No Sweeper:

Another main topic of interest was whether or not Darragh Egan would opt to use a sweeper. Under our previous manager, Davy Fitzgerald, fans became accustomed to watching Wexford play with the sweeper system.

Just like with last week’s clash, Egan did not opt for a sweeper in today’s clash against a Tipperary side who were also testing out a lot of players.

Speaking after last week’s game though, perhaps it’s not out of the question just yet.

While he does seem to appreciate a direct style of play, he did mention on South East Radio that he will adapt his styles to suit different opponents.

Jack Cullen plays a part:

While he may not have started the game, Wexford fans will be delighted to read that Naomh Eanna club-man Jack Cullen did play a part in today’s game.

Cullen came off the bench in today’s clash against Tipperary.

The Gorey man has been one of the stand-out performers of the last few Wexford Senior hurling championships with his club team. Many across Wexford would argue that his performances in those matches would warrant his inclusion in the starting fifteen for the Model County. He’s big and athletic and he’s well able to pop scores over the bar while on the run from the wing-back position.

The corner-back spot:

It’s clear that new manager Darragh Egan has identified the corner-back spot as an area to improve. For two games in a row, he has placed his trust in Kilanerin club-man, Conor Devitt, to fill that role.

It’s a position that has often haunted the Wexford hurlers, but Devitt could be one of the answers. While it may be a new role for Devitt, there is no doubt that he has the talent, speed, and tenacity to play in that position.


The Wexford team that lined out was as follows:

While it may still be just a pre-season challenge match, it’s still always good to see the manager’s approach, who is playing well, and the new members on the panel that are given a chance.

Even though it could be viewed as a ‘pre-season challenge match’ to some, a number of players on the peripheries of the team and players who have just been called into the panel would be looking at it as a golden opportunity to stake their claim.

Wexford will now be looking forward to a Walsh Cup clash against the old enemy, Kilkenny, next weekend in Wexford Park.

Featured Image Credit: Noel Reddy

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