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25th Feb 2024

‘I do have motivation this year. I had to work for my place on the team last year.’

Niall McIntyre

Ciaran Kilkenny and Con O’Callaghan both conducted their post-match interviews with TG4 fully through Irish.

Kilkenny, who scored three points including one mark in Dublin’s Allianz National League win over Kerry told TG4 that the late Shane O’Hanlon was the inspiration for their display.

St Vincent’s club-man O’Hanlon passed away last week having been a selector for the Dubs since 2013 and Kilkenny said that the team were delighted they could make him proud with their performance.

Dublin won the game by ten points, on a final score-line of-3-18 to 1-14, with Kilkenny continuing his recent rich vein of form.

For one of the first times in his Dublin career, the Castleknock club-man was demoted to the role of substitute for last year’s All-Ireland quarter final win over Mayo and he said that this has given him ‘motivation’ for this year.

Former Kerry footballer Aodán Mac Gearailt had said in his role as TG4 commentator that, as a result, Kilkenny has looked ‘cross’ in every game this year, with presenter Mícheál Ó Domhnaill asking Kilkenny if this was the case.

“I’m not sure, but I do have motivation this year.

“I had to work for my place on the team last year, and you never know what’s around the corner, so you have to focus on every training session, every game.

“I’m probably a veteran of the team, I’m 30 years of age now, so you have to take one step at a time,” he said.

“It’s been a hard fortnight without our friend Shane O’Hanlon, and he gave us a lot of inspiration tonight,” added. Kilkenny.

“He was our hero, he did everything for us, so a hard fortnight but happy with the performance, Shane would be proud of us so it’s great to get the win and now we’re going to focus on Derry, and we’re looking forward to a trip up to Derry.”

“Kerry had a lot of opportunities and they put a good few over the bar that could have been goals but we did get three goals and got a lot of points so we were very happy with that, and very happy with the contributions of the subs as well.

“There’s a couple of young lads going well there as well and that’s great to see.”

Con O’Callaghan, meanwhile, said that the first half display which saw Dublin into the half-time interval leading by 2-11 to 0-8 was their best of the year.

“It probably is.

“Everyone was accurate, everyone was on top form (in the first half.)

“In the second half, it was maybe a bit weaker, and we gave a chance to Kerry and that’s not something you can ever do.”

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