‘One Swallow doesn’t make a Summer’, so the saying goes but for Tattyreagh one weekend has certainly improved theirs.
A draw with Rock followed by a triumph at home to Owen Roes moved them off bottom spot in Division Two, securing their first points of the season.
However despite enduring a lomng losing run in the league their manager Chris Kelly remained optimistic that they would break their duck sooner rather than later.
“It was good to get off the mark on Thursday night against the Rock and then to back that up with the win on Sunday against Owen Roes. I suppose I felt our performances were good enough to win both games, but given that we kicked the late equaliser against Rock we’ll take the draw out of it in the end.”
With five matches left to play in the Intermediate league the mood at Darcy Park has improved on the back of those weekend results. The younger players seem to have settled into Kelly’s game plan and the more experienced campaigners, like James Darcy and Johnny Harkin continue to deliver.
That said Tattyreagh’s first win of the campaign was greeted with an audible sigh of relief and Kelly admits the last few months haven’t been easy.
“ There’s been a big transition within the group this year. Four or five lads who would have been important players for Tattyreagh over the last few years aren’t available to us this year for a number of reasons. A handful of the team who played the last few games had no preseason with us at all and are only really starting to come back to full fitness.”
The players that have stepped up have bought into the transition at Tattyreagh. Division Two is very competitive and for many it’s been a steep learning curve. However Eskra man Kelly detects a real desire within the camp to turn things around.
“ These boys have a huge desire to learn and work and improve and they are doing that and we see that every week. They’re fighters but Division Two is ruthless nd any mistakes are punished.
“We have played fairly well in most games this year, and definitely should have more points on the board than we do based on the performances we have put in. But mistakes we have made have been punished, and we are where we are as a result.”
Apart from some fine scores in Sunday’s feisty clash with Owen Roes it was the manner in which the team played a controlled game which impressed the managers while several positional switches also proved crucial. Peader Mullin played a massive role at the back and Chris is also delighted with the return of key personnel for the run in and of course the championship.
“Players are coming back and it is all starting to really come together at the minute. We’ve given ourselves a fighting chance which is what we sat down and talked about doing a few weeks ago. We’ve another two lads who haven’t kicked a ball yet this year returning to training this week so hopefully soon we’ll have our full panel available for the first time this year and that will make a huge difference to us too.”
At this stage in the league campaign it’s all about avoiding the drop. Kelly is a realist although confident the St Patrick’s can turn things around ahead of their meeting with Edendork this weekend.
“ We’re under no illusions, we’re in a relegation battle and our aim is to maintain our status by whatever means necessary. As I said, last weekend has given us a fighting chance and we have to, and will, build on that. We just have to keep learning and improving, and as a group we will.”
This page is available to subscribers. Click here to sign in or get access.
Receive quality journalism wherever you are, on any device. Keep up to date from the comfort of your own home with a digital subscription.
Any time | Any place | Anywhere
SUBSCRIBE TO CURRENT EDITION TODAYand get access to our archive editions dating back to 2007
(CLICK ON THE TITLE BELOW TO SUBSCRIBE)