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Westmeath must do whatever it takes to topple the mighty Dubs

By Peter Canavan

Published 15/07/2016

Big ask: Westmeath boss Tom Cribbin (right) will remind his players that shocks can happen
Big ask: Westmeath boss Tom Cribbin (right) will remind his players that shocks can happen

You don’t get points for being a brave loser. Dublin games in Leinster are such at the minute that there’s not too much talk about what way their final with Westmeath will go, where it will be won and lost or what the key match-ups might be.

Dublin are expected to cruise through, meaning the build-up has been dominated by what way Westmeath will approach the game.

Will they try to sit back, which hasn’t really been their style of play so far? Or will they try to keep as many forwards in the Dublin half as possible?

I know some teams have drawn ire for their approach to playing the Dubs.

We saw Meath try to pack their defence and frustrate them before hitting them on the counter in the Leinster semi-final. And the point was subsequently made that anything other than what’s perceived as ‘having a go’ is a damage limitation exercise.

Personally, I think the onus is on Westmeath and Tom Cribbin to set up whatever way they think gives them the best chance of winning.

They have quality in the likes of John Heslin and Kieran Martin so they’ll try to have them involved in the game as much as possible, and Cribbin will have been telling them all week that shocks can happen.

It will be interesting to see what way they go. And if it doesn’t suit other peoples’ notion of how the game should be played or if it doesn’t make for a good spectacle, frankly, it doesn’t matter. There are no points for being a brave loser.

Belfast Telegraph

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