Lack lustre it may have been for long periods as a senior football championship encounter, but it was a case of ‘expected result accomplished’ as Westmeath saw off the challenge of Waterford in the first round of the All-Ireland qualifiers in Cusack Park, Mullingar, on Sunday afternoon.
A facile eighteen point victory over their Southern opponents ensured a comprehensive return to competitive winning ways and with ten different players on the scoresheet, the management will be pleased with this particular aspect of the Lake County’s performance.
The positivity continued early on Monday morning when, following the draw for the second round of the All-Ireland qualifier series, Westmeath received a home fixture against Munster opposition once again, with Limerick to visit Cusack Park on Saturday, June 22.
Pertaining to Sunday’s contest, Ger Egan was to the forward fore as he kicked eight points, with Milltown’s Joe Halligan impressing as he contributed four points from play.
In the ascendancy by eight points at the interval the game was but over as a competitive encounter, but the home team managed to further exert their scoreboard prowess in the second half as they kicked a total of 16 points, the green flag moment arriving courtesy of a well worked Ronan O’Toole goal.
The win, when it was finally confirmed, was Westmeath’s first in the All-Ireland qualifier series since 2012 and with less than ten days to the arrival of Limerick in Mullingar, and an element of playing confidence restored, Jack Cooney and his management team will be earnestly preparing the squad as they strive to extend their championship campaign into the month of July and a place in round three, a reality which they are more than capable of achieving.