Derek McGrath pleased with his substitutions as Waterford advance to All-Ireland semi-final

They beat Wexford by 1-23 to 1-19 on Sunday

BY Simon Maguire 21:35 Sunday 23 July 2017, 21:35 23 Jul 2017

Waterford's manager Derek McGrath. Image: ©INPHO/James Crombie

Waterford manager Derek McGrath was pleased with his side after they built on their win over Kilkenny in the last round to overcome local rivals Wexford in the All-Ireland quarter-final.  

The Deise eventually ran out 1-23 to 1-19 winners and speaking to Off the Ball's Oisin Langan afterwards, he said: "If we could use the Kilkenny game as a catalyst and as a stepping stone towards the semi-final, I think generally you don't worry about perception as a manager.

"But, the thought probably would have been that the Kilkenny game went to their heads and pyschologically they weren't able to deal with it and then they had a falling point or tipping point.

"(We had to) park the Kilkenny game and celebrate it, which we did on the Saturday night, and then be mature enough to deal with the Wexford task in a very organised manner, you'd be very proud of the lads," he said.

Wexford mounted a second-half comeback and McGrath admitted he was concerned with what he saw. "I was worried with our energy levels to be honest with you," he said, adding: "Because we had spent so much time covering the short puc-outs that I was worried about our energy levels up front.

"That was the first thought but I did feel that Wexford would have a spell, if you like, so we had kind of talked about them having a spell and just weathering that storm.

"I thought we weathered it well and the reality is, I suppose, the bit of freshness from the two guys who came on...that probably changed things up a small bit."

"We just wanted to keep it up there. It was a weary and cagey game given how Davy and the lads set up similar to ourselves. It was a case of not willing to push up on your men but keeping it kind of cagey. Every ball that went up was probably going to be one-on-two or two-on-three. 

"I think Maurice gave us a point of attack in terms of his height and in terms of his physicality," he said. 

The full interview can be heard here: 

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