NEWCASTLE West are hoping that it will be third time lucky in Sunday’s Limerick SFC final against Dromcollogher-Broadford.
Beaten in the 2004, 2011 and 2012 finals and twice times by Sunday’s opponents, Dromcollogher-Broadford and both times after replays.
“You learn from you losses, you learn more from your losses and we have a lot of losses so a lot learned - I hope we have learned,” said captain Stephen Nix.
“The first time they beat us I wasn’t on the panel but the last time they beat us, personally I thought we should have won the first match but we left it slip and they came back to get the draw and they were the better team in the replay and that bit cuter to adapt to a style of play,” recalled the Newcastle West defender.
“I think we have learned but it will be hard - they control a game and you have to admire them for that but I think if we work hard the result will follow.”
Mike Quilligan is again Newcastle West manager this season but one notably change is the addition of former Donegal senior football Anton McFadden as coach.
“The new trainer Anton came in at the start of the year and did pre-season and it went from there. The two boys (Quilligan and McFadden) combined their ideas to see what is the best way to play because this ‘modern football’ is all about systems and how to play and tactics. The day of kicking the ball in long is gone. It’s working well. When you have a new man in he is a fresh pair of eyes and he can see things differently from the last couple of years. He brought that to us and identifies mistakes we have being making. He has tidied up a lot of mistakes in our game,” said Nix of McFadden, who played Sigerson Cup football with UL last season.
“It’s a big week for the club with the minors on the same day and the U-16s won last week and the U-14s are in their county final,” pointed out the captain.
“We were taking it every game as we saw it. The only game we took our eye off the ball was Adare - we took them for granted even though we were told by management. Then we knuckled down against Ballysteen and scrapped a win against them and that was pressure off because we were in the semi final. That gave us extra time to focus. The Ballylanders match was very tough. They are always tough and hard to break down. Things went our way and we got the breaks that day and some of the lads played very well with some great running. We have lost a couple of county finals but it would be great to win it. It’s going to be hard - Drom are a very good team,” outlined Nix at Monday’s final launch in Irish Wire premises on the Dock Road.