It's not often that a Fermanagh side finds itself on the cusp of an All-Ireland hurling final appearance.
But success in tomorrow’s All-Ireland semi-final against Roscommon would thrust the Erne county into the U21 ‘B’ decider — something that manager Rory O’Donnell views as giving the sport a significant shot in the arm.
“It would be terrific if we were to make it into this decider because the team is a mix of players, some of whom have had very little or no success at any level,” explains O’Donnell.
In overcoming Tyrone in the Ulster final, Fermanagh played with considerable spirit and no little skill — so much so indeed that O’Donnell is optimistic about their chances of success against Roscommon.
“I think that the players have taken great encouragement from their Ulster win and now want to take things to the next level,” adds O’Donnell.
John Duffy, Francie McBrien, J P McGarry and Shea Curran underpin the Fermanagh side which is drawn from just two clubs, Lisbellaw and Lisnaskea. In fact there are only three teams in all within the county — Knock McGrattan is the other — but Fermanagh will not be going into battle harbouring any inferiority complex.
“We have belief in ourselves and we also feel that our fitness and our stamina will stand us in good stead,” says O’Donnell.
Kerry and Kildare will meet in the other semi-final with the final played at Semple Stadium.
“It would be great to get a chance to play in a final at Semple Stadium. That’s somewhere where everyone wants to play,” says O’Donnell.