This season will be David Treacy's 11th with the Dublin hurlers. In that time, the 29-year-old has seen major progression within the club game in the capital and also at inter-county level.
"It's unbelievably competitive," said the Cuala forward of the Dublin club hurling scene.
You even look at the calibre of the managers: Mattie (Kenny) up to last year, Anthony Daly, Joe Fortune who was with the Dublin U21s, Ollie Baker was involved as well. You've all these managers and the quality and strength and conditioning of these guys has come on hugely. It's a hugely physical championship.
The year we won it, we barely beat Brigid's in the quarter-final and we only beat Crokes in the final last year by three points and this year they caught us. It's unbelievably competitive and the same with Ballyboden. So getting out of that is really hard. It's in a good position.
The two-time All-Ireland club winner, who was speaking at the launch of Future Proof Media, believes the rising standard of club hurling in Dublin gives players extra confidence when they join the Dublin set-up.
"The quality at senior championship is very strong in terms of the way the fitness has gone in Dublin and how important that is. The guys are at a huge level so I think the gap is being bridged slowly.
"A lot of the teams have players of inter-county calibre these days. You look at the likes of Na Fianna and their underage set-up and the players they have coming through. It's fantastic and it's only going to get stronger and harder, unfortunately."
Dublin hurler David Treacy at the launch of Future Proof Media, the low cost, jargon free marketing consultants. Visit www.futureproofmedia.ie to see how they can help you grow your business. Photo by Ramsey Cardy/Sportsfile