McManamon delivers for super Dubs

SUPER sub Kevin McManamon played a pivotal role in helping Dublin claim the All-Ireland Championship title for the third year running in Croke Park on Sunday.

The Dubs overcame Mayo for the second year running in the final when they emerged 1-17 to 1-16 winners.

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An injury time free from Dean Rock secured Jim Gavin’s side the top prize in Gaelic football in what was a thrilling showdown.

McManamon came on in the second half and made an immediate impact when he kicked a great point to settle his nerves.

The Dubs showed great spirit and composure in the final minutes when they came from two points down to record a superb victory.

It is the St Jude’s star’s fifth All-Ireland medal and he made an immediate impact after coming on at halftime when he registered a point straight away.

McManamon tormented the Mayo defence throughout the second half – running at the defence and taking the pressure off the Dubs back line.

He believes watching the game from the bench helped him when he came on in the second half. 

“It’s cool to be to be able to watch the first half. You can spot what we planned to do and it was not going right and I could see a big gap out there” McManamon told The Echo.

“The pace of the match and their backs going forward made it difficult for us.

“We only scored four points in the half from play which was not our standard. We were not getting enough penetration inside, not enough territory on the ball. We needed to get a bit more ball inside to the forwards, but they were getting bodies back. We just changed it a small bit in the second half and it paid off. It was a serious game serious intensity, it was hard to get to grips at times - it took a while to get used to the intensity” he added.

Despite being down by a point at halftime, McManamon felt that there was not that much pressure on the team.

“Being a point down was not a big deal” continued McManamon. “We were there before and we just kept going in the second half.

“Dean Rock- unbelievable. I have huge respect for the amount of practice he does. I would not want anyone else in that position.

“With the game on the line the practising he does, he is just a legend. How cool he is under pressure, I’m just delighted for him.  He took a big hit in National League final against Kerry, he took it hard and took it on his own shoulder. Fair play to him”.

Speaking about beating Mayo for the second time in the final McManamon said: “I have massive respect for Mayo. They have some absolute legends in the team, some really big men, big leaders.

“Their resilience cannot be really questioned. The way we respect them is to give them every single thing we have. We gave Mayo everything we had in preparing for the match and out in the field in terms of work rate - that’s how we showed we respect them,”.

While McManamon and the Dubs will be celebrating this week, he will be back playing with his club in the quarter-final of the championship when they go head to head with Cuala.

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