The Connacht side have not won the Sam Maguire Cup since 1951, subsequently losing eight and drawing two of their 10 final appearances.
“To win, however, would mean having to take down one of the best teams that the game has ever seen, the best of the modern era”. Mick O’Dwyer (8) and Sean Boylan (4) are the only other members.
No team in the country can rival Dublin’s staggering financial resources or playing numbers.
The Dubs fought back however and after Cillian O’Connor hit the post from an injury time free, Rock made the most of his chance to seal the win. This was Dublin’s third title in as many years. Unless, of course, the counties end in stalemate just as they did in 2016.
“And yet they keep coming back”. ‘Even if the hopes you started out with are dashed, hope has to be maintained.
Dublin: Stephen Cluxton (Parnells); Philly McMahon (Ballymun Kickhams), Cian O’Sullivan (Kilmacud Crokes), Michael Fitzsimons (Cuala); Jonny Cooper (Na Fianna), John Small (Ballymun Kickhams), Jack McCaffrey (Clontarf); Brian Fenton (Raheny), James McCarthy (Ballymun Kickhams); Ciarán Kilkenny (Castleknock), Con O’Callaghan (Cuala), Niall Scully (Templeogue Synge St.); Paul Mannion (Kilmacud Crokes), Paddy Andrews (St Brigid’s), Dean Rock (Ballymun Kickhams). As it stands, Mayo lead 0-09 to 1-05.
It was a typical Dublin and Mayo clash. Subs: D O’Connor for S O’Shea 50m; S Coen for Boyle 55m; C Loftus for Moran 63m; D Drake for Doherty 69m; Ger Cafferkey for Higgins 75; D Kirby for McLouglin.