Wexford comprehensively defeated Laois at O’Moore Park this afternoon…
It was Darragh Egan’s first championship win as Wexford Senior hurling manager, having previously drawn with Galway and lost to Dublin in the opening two rounds.
Here, we look at some of the major talking points following the game:
Wexford racked up a big scoreline in today’s clash over Laois. Wexford scored 6-21 while they only conceded 12 points. The big scoreline could prove important at the end of this campaign as the table could go down to points difference. Although Laois are one of the so-called ‘weaker teams’, that same Laois team ran Dublin close in Parnell Park. As Wexford were still chasing their first win, under pressure away from home, the scoreline and the win were impressive.
One common theme of the Wexford Senior hurlers in recent years is their wide count. Under Dunne and Fitzgerald, Wexford always seemed to rack up a significant number of wides. This theme continued last weekend when Wexford hit sixteen wides against Dublin in a disappointing performance. They seemed to have ironed out some of those issues this week, as they only hit six wides overall.
Ahead of the game, Darragh Egan made some changes to the team. Mikey Dwyer, Oisin Foley, and Kevin Foley were all dropped to the bench. Both Lee Chin and Jack O’Connor started in the half-forward line and their physical presence and their ability to win the ball around the half-forward line proved important in today’s clash against Laois. After last weekend’s clash against the Dubs, columnist Darragh Sinnott identified this as an area that Wexford need to improve if they’re to start winning matches, and that certainly was the case today.
Goals win games:
It may be cliché, but goals do win games. Wexford scored six of them today. Even though one could argue that Laois are not the same standard as other opponents, Wexford fans can take pleasure from the fact that they’re still creating goal chances and scoring goal chances. This was an issue against Dublin, with the only real goal chance coming from a Conor McDonald shot after a pass from Rory O’Connor. Interestingly, five of Wexford’s goals today came in the second half as the Model men continued to pile on the pressure. Wexford’s six goals came from Conor McDonald, Mark Fanning (2), Kevin Foley, Dee O’Keeffe, and Rory O’Connor.
Trust in Fanning:
One of the major talking points from the previous two games was Fanning’s missed penalties. The Glynn-Barntown shot-stopper missed a penalty against Galway, which went over the bar, and then against Dublin, he had his penalty stopped by the opposition keeper. Some Wexford hurling fans called for the penalty taker to change. This was not the case though. Fanning responded excellently to his critics today as he scored two brilliant penalties against an excellent Laois keeper in Enda Rowland.
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