“If you don’t play well in the league, you won’t in the championship” – Smyth
BALLYBODEN St Enda’s selector Cormac Smyth has stressed the importance of producing a strong league campaign if they are to mount a serious challenge for championship honours later in the season.
The Firhouse Road club’s year will throw-in on Sunday when they host defending Adult Football League Division One champions Na Fianna at Pairc Ui Murchu.
“We just need to focus on our first game, anything beyond that would be crazy at this point,” Smyth told The Echo.
“I believe that if you don’t play well in the league, you won’t in the championship. That’s the golden rule and it’s a simple as that.
“Our focus is to compete well in the league and win every match, and we’ll see where that takes us then. But it’s one step at a time.”
Boden previously seized the league title back in 2016, when they narrowly beat St Jude’s.
That same year, St Enda’s stormed through the championship all the way to claim the All-Ireland.
While Crokes finished runner-up in the league last season, they won the Dublin Championship and went all the way through Leinster and into the All-Ireland – where they were eventually beaten.
For Smyth, it underscores just how fierce competition is in Dublin.
“It is a very competitive league and it only gets more and more competitive every year” he insisted
“All you have to do is look at [Kilmacud] Crokes playing in an All-Ireland Final on Saturday. You had St Vincent’s doing it and ourselves a few years back.
“It just shows how competitive Dublin is. Any team can win it really.”
With Kilmacud Crokes playing Kilcoo in the All-Ireland Senior Championship Final, their clash with Ballyboden in the Dublin leagues was postponed to a later date.
Elsewhere in Division One, Lucan Sarsfields are scheduled to host St Vincent’s at the 12th Lock after storming to a 1-17 to 2-11 win over Ballinteer St Johns in the opening round last weekend.
St Jude’s will host Ballymun Kickhams in Tymon Park on Sunday morning after slipping to an opening-round defeat at the hands of Na Fianna.
Thomas Davis gave Kickhams a good rattle in the previous round, holding them to a 0-9 to 1-6 draw at Pairc Ciceam.
Kiltipper Road will play host to a mouthwatering encounter between Davis’ and Cuala on Sunday.
In Division Two, both Round Tower Clondalkin and St Anne’s will be hoping to bounce back from their first-round defeats when they take on Kilmacud Crokes and St Oliver Plunkett’s/Eoghan Ruadh respectively.
Templeogue Synge Street host Round Towers Lusk at Dolphin Park after dishing out a 1-8 to 0-7 defeat to Fingallians on Sunday.