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Dublin: 9 °C Thursday 25 April, 2019

'Wexford are at a crossroads - they need a new direction, something fresh'

Nine-time All-Ireland winner Jackie Tyrrell feels they have stagnated.

NINE-TIME KILKENNY All-Ireland senior hurling champion Jackie Tyrrell says that Wexford are ‘at a crossroads’ at the minute.

Davy Fitzgerald’s side were knocked out of the All-Ireland SHC at the quarter-final stage after a seven-point loss to Clare in Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Saturday afternoon.

It is the second year in-a-row that the Slaneysiders exited at that stage.

And four-time All-Star Tyrrell feels that Wexford have ‘stagnated’ in 2018, adding that their sweeper system is dated and too easy to read.

“They’d a very good year last year and this year, I feel they just stagnated,” the RTÉ analyst said on The Sunday Game last night.

Davy Fitzgerald dejected late in the game Wexford manager Davy Fitzgerald. Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

“I was at the last round of the round-robin when they played Kilkenny. And I left that day after Wexford had coughed up a nine-point lead and lost it and I said, ‘The sweeper has actually been buried in Nowlan Park that night.’

“I just feel it’s a dated system. It has brought Wexford to a certain level. The top teams now know how to beat it. We’ve seen Kilkenny know how to beat it, Tipperary, Clare know how to beat it now.

“So, I feel that they need a new direction. They need something fresh. We’ve seen examples of where Sean Murphy can just be taken out of a game.

“So, Wexford are probably at a crossroads right now.”

Lee Chin dejected at the end of the game A dejected Lee Chin after their championship exit. Source: Tommy Dickson/INPHO

Tyrrell, who retired from the inter-county game in November 2016, added that ‘hurling is alive in Wexford’ among the fans, but perhaps Faythe Harriers star Lee Chin’s form exemplifies the state of affairs within the team at the moment.

“I just thought Lee Chin typified Wexford now,” he said.

“He just looked kind of ragged yesterday. He was out the field, in the field, didn’t really know where he was.

“I think maybe they’ve trained a bit too hard earlier in the year, and went for that league. When they didn’t win it and Kilkenny beat them down there, I don’t think they’ve fully recovered and come back rejuvenated like other teams.”

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Emma Duffy

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