Laverty accepts Ulster final disappointment
DONE and dusted – that’s how Conor Laverty and his Down team-mates are viewing their disastrous Ulster final loss to Donegal as they aim to make the All-Ireland semi-finals for the second time in three years against Mayo on Saturday at Croke Park.
By defeating Tipperary last Saturday, James McCartan’s side became the only second team from 16 to win a qualifier having lost a provincial final the week before, and the Kilcoo man said the mood in the camp was extremely positive ahead of the match with the Connacht champions.
“I suppose the way we were looking at the Tipperary match was that if we won it, we’d be at the same stage as Donegal are.
“People talked about the six-day turnaround and the problems it brings, but it gave us a chance to get back out on the field and to get playing again quickly.
“We knew we let ourselves down against Donegal and it was a great opportunity to put that right.
“As far as we are concerned the Donegal match is done and dusted now. We’re into the quarter-finals now and we have a chance to go further as well.”
Tipperary were seen as the team most likely to pull off a shock last weekend, but the Mourne men dealt with them in a professional manner, disposing of them with five points to spare.
“We knew we were going to play a county that had put in a lot of hard work,” said Laverty. “There’s some real excellent coaching going on there.
“They won the All-Ireland minor last year and have been competing at u-21 level, and in a qualifier match anything can happen.
“But we got there and got through it, we’re back on track now.”
The full story is in the current issue of Gaelic Life, published on Thursday August 2. Buy your copy now in your local newsagent, or you can purchase the online version – for only 90p – by clicking here