GAA

'We're Selfish People, Driven People, That's The Way We Are'

'We're Selfish People, Driven People, That's The Way We Are'

Ballygunner won their seventh consecutive Waterford hurling title with an easy victory over Passage on Sunday. The game finished 1-23 to 0-9.

It was a match the reigning champions never looked like losing, leading from the first minute to the last. 11 points was the gap at the break.

"We didn't let up from the first minute right to the end," joint captain Philip Mahony told TG4.

"That's what we were speaking about during the week. We managed to get three or four massive performances in this year and the lads have done a great job training us. We waited on a little bit later in the year until we went really hard at it.

"To win seven in a row is something I could never have dreamed of. I remember going to county finals when I was young watching Ballygunner, if you'd told me back then that they'd win seven-in-a-row... It's crazy but it's an unbelievable achievement.

"We were in the situation in 2013 when we took the foot off the gas [and lost to Passage] and we learnt a lot of lessons from that. Since then, we've been able to finish really strong. We have an unbelievable physical trainer in Shay Fitzpatrick. He's been in the club for God knows how many years."

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Ballygunner manager Darragh O'Sullivan feels that his side's dominance is not a negative for Waterford hurling

"They're a phenomenal bunch, you see how hard they won't from the first minute to the 60th," he said.

"That's what they're built on and it's the foundations they've built over the last number of years.

"I heard Phillip talking about Shay Fitzpatrick. He's with us 30 years training teams in Ballygunner. Each year he's still there and he's evolving the whole time. You see how strong they finished, that's testament to Shay.

"If you ask other teams, the standard has been raised. Some of the teams we played this year, without a shadow of a doubt, they've got better. We're pushing that bar every year and people must realise that. Teams might get to where we were in the previous year but they're not getting to where we are in the current year.

"We're going through a purple patch at the moment and it's not going to be there forever, we know that. We've just got to keep our standards at the level they're at and please God, we can stay there as long as we can. We're selfish people, driven people, that's the way we are."

Photo by Seb Daly/Sportsfile

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PJ Browne
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