After a stellar season in 2016, Gearoid McKiernan’s build-up this year was hampered by injury but he showed last Sunday against Tyrone that he was returning to a level close to his brilliant best.
And, if there was any doubt, the towering Swad man is definitely back now after a phenomenal performance saw him kick 1-5 in the shock win over Mayo today.
McKiernan, though, was keen to point out that it was an all-round team performance that won the day.
“It was a great team performance by everyone. We hadn’t performed well in this division but today we had a plan and thankfully we came out on the right end of the result,” said Gearoid.
Asked about his return to full fitness, he said: “I still have a right bit to go on fitness, I missed most of the pre-season but these games are bringing me on a lot. In fairness to Matt and the boys, they’ve been very patient with me, they’ve been giving me time and trying to get me back slowly so I’m just trying to repay them and the team now.”
He was glad to see Cavan deliver such an assured performance.
“In the last two games we didn’t perform at all to the level that we expect of ourselves. We had a few long chats and we worked on a few things on the training field. We got two points today but we still have a lot of work to do this season.”
McKiernan joked that his own team-mate, goalkeeper Ray Galligan, was putting pressure on him when Gearoid stepped up to a crucial 55-metre free, which he nailed.
“Ray was behind me, he was saying you better score it… So there’ll be a bit of slagging this week about it I’d say!” he laughed.