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Ernesiders will not be taking Westmeath threat lightly

By Declan Bogue

If there is one player who perhaps best sums up the never-say-die attitude that brought Fermanagh from five points down in the last six minutes against Roscommon on Sunday and into the last 12 of the All-Ireland series, it is Marty O'Brien.

O'Brien hurtles into high balls and challenges with no regard for his own safety, ripping the ball from opponents and charging upfield, all elbows and knees.

The Ernemen have now been drawn to face Westmeath on July 25, and O'Brien urges caution when assessing their threat.

"We are playing a team that has been in a provincial final and they have put Meath to the sword," he said.

"I know they didn't score many against Dublin but they are no joke. We played them a couple of years ago and they are a right side. We know we have a task on our hands."

In the meantime, Fermanagh are still basking in the glory of one of the most dramatic games of the year. O'Brien's own recollection is slightly sketchy. The 27-year-old Devenish man admitted: "At one stage I was looking at the scoreboard and I couldn't even add up the scores.

"I had noticed the ball going into Sean Quigley and thought it was a wee bit fruitless because he was on his own. There was one coming in and he was there, I don't know why he didn't palm it into the net, but I was fouled.

"What happened after that was incredible. Tomás (Corrigan) needs to take a lot of credit. Then (Damien) Kelly kicked a great point. Quigley hit the last point, unbelievable for a man who had such a terrible time in the first half… he kicked that '45' and then kicked the point spinning round over the shoulder."

Looking quite dazed from the emotion of the day, he set the win in some context, with fans still out on the pitch.

"It's unbelievable, it's hard to fathom what happened. That's the best moment I have had in a Fermanagh jersey," he said.

Fermanagh and Westmeath have met twice in the All-Ireland qualifiers, with the Ulster side winning twice; 0-14 to 0-7 in 2002 and 3-10 to 1-15 in 2013.

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