Westmeath's Joe Clarke and DIT's Niall Quinn in action during last Sunday's Walsh Shield match - as Westmeath manager Brian Hanley watches on in the background.

Westmeath hurling boss blasts 'deplorable' display against DIT

Westmeath hurling manager Brian Hanley pulled no punches following his side's very poor display when losing to DIT in the Walsh Shield last Sunday. Asked if a repeat of that performance would give his charges little chance of beating Kerry in the opening round of the Allianz Hurling League, Hanley said: "We would have less chance of beating Kerry than having no chance. Who would that beat? It wouldn't beat Division 4 sides. That was cat today. It was deplorable." Expanding on specific aspects of the defeat which annoyed him, Hanley stated: "The big thing for me was the very poor attitude. In fairness, in training they've given 100 per cent in everything they've done, but today we could even see the way the lads were throwing the ball around before the game that they weren't tuned in. It's disappointing. It's heartbreaking because of the work you're trying to do. It was collectively bad today, more than just a few individuals," Hanley continued. "We didn't look coherent at all up front. The attitude was just pathetic. Players have to be accountable for that. "The players need to look at themselves. Everything has been put on a plate for them, by the county board down to the management team - they can have no complaints. They can't say, 'this wasn't done, that wasn't done', and they didn't turn up today which is very disappointing. "The penny has to drop with themselves. I believe if the attitude is right they are as good as what is around, but when the attitude is wrong like it was today they are as bad as anything that is around. That's the bottom line." Asked will be a case of all guns blazing when his side heads for Kerry on February 24, Hanley responded: "Well, if it isn't, I won't be there. You'll be talking to someone else that day." "Today doesn't mean an awful lot at the end of the day and I hope the lads got a rude awakening. It's better today than down in Kerry. Hopefully, today will be the day that we look back on in April and say, 'do you remember that day - it was the catapult for better things to come'," Hanley added. All Westmeath Gaels will echo these sentiments after an eminently-forgettable effort against the DIT students.