Former kingpins of Galway club hurling in the 1990s, and a club that also won county titles in 2000, 2002 and 2004, Athenry, got their 2014 campaign off to a positive start with a 2-20 to 0-15 win over Liam Mellows in Gort last weekend.
The city side, under the guidance of Conor O' Donovan, led by 0-9 to 0-8 at half time and were playing well, with county player David Collins and John Lee dominating in the half-back-line and Tadhg Haran doing well from placed balls.
Mellows went into a three-point lead at the start of the second half.
However with Athenry's Cathal Keane unerring from frees, Billy Caulfield's side drew level and then took a lead they would not relinquish when full-forward Jack Carr goaled after a powerful run by Keane.
Athenry hit an impressive 2-12 in that second half and they had other scorers in Conor Burke, Cathal Keane, Paddy Hannon, David Donohue and substitute Aidan Higgins who hit 0-2.
Mellows did not really deserve to be beaten by 11 points, but they were far too dependent on Tadhg Haran, who hit 0-10 (0-2 from play) for their scores.
It is 10 years now since Athenry last won the county cup, and while they have a long way to go to repeat that feat, at least they will take confidence from this victory.
They had good performers in Conor Burke and Shane Donohue in defence, county footballer Tom Flynn who hit three points over the hour from centre-forward and the impressive Cathal Keane who ended the day on eight points.