Wexford absolutely demolish the spread after doing themselves proud against the Dubs
WEXFORD 0-7, DUBLIN 0-15
The Yellowbellies were projected to lose by over 24 points by some bookies. The Wexford lads had something to say about that.
It is not often that Dublin don't beat the spread.
Whether it is 10 points, 16 points, hell, 22 points or more, the Dubs usually get down to it and do not let up until their opponents are dust beneath their boots.
At Wexford Park, the home side raged into the reigning All-Ireland champions and let them know they'd be getting no easy scores. Wexford were going to give it a rattle or, at least, rattle some Dubs.
They led 0-3 to 0-2 after 10 minutes and that was enough to get the few fans in attendance roaring in approval. If only they knew when their side's next score would come...
As for Dessie Farrell's side, they were keeping the scoreboard ticking over, but at a snail's pace. Everywhere you looked, a Wexford player was making a tackle, diving to make a block or generally making a nuisance of himself.
We had Eoin Porter and Brian Malone hounding Paddy Small, Liam Coleman getting up to contest with Brian Fenton, Daithí Waters all over Peadar Ó Cofaigh Byrne like a rash and Michael Furlong chasing Sean MacMahon with a glint in his eyes.
Shane Roche had clearly lit a fire under his players and it was evident in how each man spurred and rallied the other after every block, score or turnover.
Even the great Con O'Callaghan was finding it tough to get his scores. When he found some space, at one stage in the first half, Furlong was there to block his goal-bound effort.
0-6 to 0-3 the champions led at the break. Wexford had the wind, what little there was of it, in the second half. Fans clung to that. If only the home side could break out of harrying mode and take their scoring chances when they came.
Wexford did not get their fourth point of the day until the 50th minute. There had been a chasm of 40 minutes between that and their previous score and that was the difference. Still, they were only six points back with 20 to play.
Dublin stretched ahead, 0-14 to 0-5, as the game headed into the final 10 minutes. Cormac Costello was the best Dublin player on show and he had found his range. Colm Basquel chipped in with a fine score.
Sensing it was time to fling the dice a final few times, Wexford pressed forward and answered with two sweets scores from Donal Shanley.
The final score of the game arrived via the boot of Dean Rock and that was it - an eight-point winning margin for Dublin.
It is the lowest scoring total Dublin have returned in a championship game since they drew the 2016 All-Ireland final with Mayo [scoring 2-9] before going on the win the replay.
For Wexford, not exactly something to be etching on a wall for eternity but a real scrap, and something they can be proud of. Not many ruffle the Dubs' feathers like that.