Baldwin hoping to get one over Warwickshire

By Katrina Brennan

FERMANAGH hurling manager Joe Baldwin was “delighted” with the character shown by his squad on Saturday afternoon after they came back from 11 points down to earn a draw with Cavan.

Baldwin felt it was a point gained in their Lory Meagher campaign, rather than a point dropped, acknowledging that; “you can probably afford one defeat in this competition but you can’t afford two.”

Fermanagh were missing a few key players for Saturday’s derby meeting with Cavan. Dylan Bannon and Daniel Teague were both suspended following their red cards a week earlier against Leitrim, while the versatile Luca McCusker was only introduced in the dying minutes due to knee and shoulder injuries that he picked up in the Leitrim match.

Fermanagh started well on Saturday but a strong second quarter saw Cavan go in four up at the break and Baldwin admitted he was worried but praised the effort of his boys for how they dealt with it.

“What you got there was what you can’t buy and that was real guts and determination not to get beaten. John Duffy said it in the changing rooms at half time, he said “we’re not coming out of here losing this game today” and that was character, and you can’t buy that. As a coach and a manager, I’m just so pleased with their attitude and we never said die and kept going.”

The next test against Warwickshire will be a repeat of the Division 3B final. The Erne men were dealt a 1-18 to 1-13 defeat on Easter Sunday in Ederney in what was a surprise defeat to the English outfit.

Baldwin is confident his team will be well prepared for the trip across the water this weekend; “The day against Warwickshire in the league final, I’m not going to say it was complacency, but we had been going so well up to that, that it was the first time our mettle was really tested. Now we know what to expect in terms of Warwickshire.

“We’ve got to be ready for the physicality of them. The old saying ‘you’ve got to hammer the hammer’, certainly that’s what we’ll be trying to do this weekend, in trying to get pressure onto their key players.”

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