Cathal McShane didn’t even try to put a positive spin on Omagh last Sunday. Safe to say, the all-Ireland champions weren’t happy bunnies as they walked away from Healy Park at the wrong end of being beaten 0-13 to 0-8 to a previously pointless Dublin.
ut-Star 2019 and super-sub Croke Park 2021 also did not panic. Tyrone had gone through tournament disaster before and recovered spectacularly.
In 2020, that fateful February day when McShane suffered a horrific ankle injury, Tyrone finished off Galway by a humiliating 19 points. On a stormy night just six days later, they inflicted their first defeat for Dublin at the hands of Dessie Farrell.
What happened last summer is still more remarkable: in the tournament semi-final against Kerry in June, they scored six goals. They looked defensively chaotic. . . However, three months later, Brian Dooher and Feargal Logan had turned them into revenue pioneers and all-Ireland champions.
Sunday’s humdrum defeat was of a very different nature to last year’s national championship semi-final disaster against Kerry. But could that be their ‘Killarney moment’ in 2022?
“Definitely possible,” agreed McShane, speaking at the launch of the ‘vintage jersey’ yesterday to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Allianz Leagues.
“Don’t get me wrong, when you look at the game and analyze it, a lot of things happened, you played different cards and what didn’t. Dublin has no points, so you know they will be a dangerous animal.
“For ourselves, we just have to focus on getting ahead and reacting and starting our season (and running) because it doesn’t take too long to start looking and start having be impacted more positively.
“There are small profits. We just know we need to keep working hard, believe in what we’re doing and positive things will happen. ”
And, you know, the first chance to do that came with the team they beat at the All-Ireland last year. Mayo: another competitor with a point to prove at Omagh this Saturday night.
A third defeat in five rounds last Sunday, sent Tyrone immediately into the relegation conversation at the bottom of Division 1. Their last two games were against Mayo and Kerry, heavyweights. Sign chasing a final berth of the tournament rather than an exit.
Tyrone’s current struggles are reminiscent of earlier failures to protect Sam, in ’04, ’06 and ’09, long before McShane arrived on the scene.
“Just played our last game there, we weren’t happy with the way it was going and obviously we’re going to be looking for a reaction – but we know what we’re capable of,” the man said. said target.
“It’s just a matter of continuing to work hard and more positive times will come. It was just a strange year. If you look back at last year’s tournament, we didn’t perform too well there either.
“I knew it was a different format, but we knew after that game in Kerry, everything changed. . . everything basically just increased it a little bit.
“It’s been a long year that has taken away a lot of people, playing with your county and then coming back to your club. This year it’s been very difficult to start over and hit that standard. I think every team has to face that. That’s the condition we’re playing in, it’s the time of year and all the rest, but without a doubt we know we need to improve in the future and that’s going to be the goal. ”
It’s funny how fickle fate works: McShane suffered a late-season injury in Tuam just weeks after he decided not to pursue an AFL career with the Adelaide Crows.
Not that he has any regrets: how could he after priceless saves against Kerry and Mayo last season?
“I don’t think a week goes by, or two weeks go by without seeing someone and they bring it up,” he admitted. “Listen, I’m absolutely happy with my decision. I went to Australia and had two and a half weeks so I could get to know it all better.
“It has been a great experience, but obviously when it comes to a deadline where I have to decide, it is clear that I will stay here and I am very happy to do so.
“It was just unfortunate timing, with injuries. But again, my aim is to win Sam with Tyrone, so I don’t think I would be too happy if I was in Australia and Tyrone was climbing the Hogan ladder to lift Sam. I’m glad we got there.”
McShane has started three of Tyrone’s games so far, coming on from the bench in the other two.
Still only in his early 20s, he remains confident his body will allow him to return to his All-Star peak. It’s been a long process: his initial detox was not helped by the arrival of Covid, while “there are complications along the way and things may not go as planned”.
“Without a doubt, the year that I was in in 2019, it was not just a few games, but a lot,” he pointed out.
“Obviously I was dropped from the game there, so I need to be honest with my assessment and know I’m not going back and straight to the top. But I envision myself getting there, and how to get there; I am still working on it.”
https://www.independent.ie/sport/gaelic-games/gaelic-football/cathal-mcshane-in-search-of-a-red-hand-reaction-41455663.html Cathal McShane Seeks Red Hand Reaction