‘Davy’s no fool, I’m competent at what I do. He doesn’t entertain substandard work, nor do I’

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‘Davy’s no fool, I’m competent at what I do. He doesn’t entertain substandard work, nor do I’


Mags D’Arcy, pictured at the launch of Bord Gais’s sponsorship extension of the All-Ireland hurling championship, is delighted to be part of Davy Fitzgerald’s backroom team with the Wexford senior hurlers. Photo: David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile
Mags D’Arcy, pictured at the launch of Bord Gais’s sponsorship extension of the All-Ireland hurling championship, is delighted to be part of Davy Fitzgerald’s backroom team with the Wexford senior hurlers. Photo: David Fitzgerald/Sportsfile

Now in her second year as part of Davy Fitzgerald’s Wexford set-up, Mags D’Arcy would just as soon get on with the business of coaching rather than field questions about what it’s like to be a woman in a man’s world.

But that’s generally the way it is when you take the road less travelled.

“I’d like for it to be normalised, I don’t want headlines,” offers the former Wexford camogie goalkeeper.

“I really don’t want headlines. But it seems to come with the territory. I go about my job and, look, I’ve been told that it has inspired other girls and other females to get involved, that it’s given them the confidence to get involved. If it does inspire others, that’s great, but my primary objective is to be involved and to win games. I’m a winner, I’m really competitive, that’s just in my nature.

“Do I want the conversation to continue? Not really. I’d like it to be normalised, I don’t want headlines but, as I said, it seems to come with the territory.”

Accomplished

An accomplished goalkeeper with Wexford for years, D’Arcy’s role was originally to help out with the ‘keepers but Fitzgerald was impressed enough and this year her remit with Wexford has evolved further and for 2019 she is involved with the outfield players too.

“I came in to help out in that capacity (as a goalkeeping coach). There was the goalkeeping coach, Noel Considine, who is a Clare native. He was there I think in January and I came in in February just to assist him and help out.

“As you can imagine, it’s a long commute from Clare to Wexford so there are times when he might not be there or… so he can have someone just to call on and that’s important, that support in numbers and that’s where I came in.

“It was just to bring in my experience and help along in any way I could. I’ve been involved now… this is obviously my second season and now I’m involved in the general play of things.

“So there’s a big coaching backroom team and I’m just one of those many people involved. I’m loving it, I’m really enjoying it, I’m really enjoying the high performance element to the environment. Look, Davy’s no fool, I’m competent at what I do, I’m professional in my role. He doesn’t entertain substandard work, nor do I. That’s kind of where it stands.

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“To be honest, he’s been a real mentor for me through it all.”

Wexford hurling is looking to move to the next level but Wexford camogie is just getting back on its feet after a difficult start to the season that saw them struggle to field a team.

“They’re in a better position now than they were a couple of months ago, that goes without saying. It was difficult to see it all unfold and knowing that you can’t ultimately fix it.

“It’s up to the powers that be and the people that were put into the roles that they were put into within the county board to sort it out. That’s why they’re in the roles they are. They addressed it, everything has moved on.

“Girls are enjoying training from what I gather, that’s the feedback I’m getting from the club girls.

“They’re looking forward now to kind of resetting and using this season as a stepping stone to getting back on track.

“You need to be in the top four to be competing for All-Ireland honours and that’s where Wexford camogie want to be.”

For now, though, her focus is on bringing Wexford to the next level ahead of a Leinster SHC campaign that starts with a trip to Parnell Park to face Dublin on May 19.

And D’Arcy believes the body of work they have put down under Fitzgerald shows that they are ready to claim championship silverware.

“Since Davy was placed in his position – we’re at season three now – the guys have beaten every top team that there is in the country, in the league or championship.

“They know that they’re well capable of pushing things on on any given day but for us it’s just about getting that consistency of performance.

“We know if there’s consistency in our performance, even little things like free count and errors on our own behalf, if we can get those little things tweaked, and again that word consistency comes back into play.

“If we can get a consistent performance, then guys are well capable of winning whatever honours they want to.

“But we must take each game at a time in saying that.”

Irish Independent


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