Tonight a new episode of The Clash Act will be released where all star hurler Tom Dempsey opens up about his time with the model county.
The team of 96 and the man who led them to glory, Liam Griffin will live long in the archives of Wexford history.
However, Dempsey explains it took a long time for Wexford fans to warm to to hotelier.
“There was a meeting to get rid of Liam in the winter of 1995.”
“Can you imagine for my personal career or for Wexford what a disaster that would have been?”
The Roslare man employed some unconventional methods when he first took charge and this didn’t sit right with many of the supporters but the players believed in the system.
“It wasn’t a player’s meeting because in fairness to Liam, although I used to have a falling out with Liam every second day, the players were always totally behind him.”
“I think it was the county at large that wasn’t too happy with his tenure.”
According to the Buffers Alley man, Griffen had a roadmap for success and had trust in the process.
“The one thing about Liam, he knew where he was going from the very start.”
The Wexford boss learned a lot from the first year in charge and was adament not to repeat those same mistakes going forward.
“He reckoned there was maybe 1000 or 2000 things you’ve to get right and he was going to get as many of them right as he possible could.”
His first mission was to tackle the fitness levels of the yellow bellies.
“He brought in a guy called Sean Collier.”
Ironically, part of our training was to go in to a boxing ring with Sean who was the Irish middle weight boxing hopeful and a kick boxing champion and we’d have to slog it out with Sean.”
Griffin didn’t go in for traditional practices when it came to readying his team for championship action.
“One of the biggest things Liam did was bring in Niamh Fitzpatrick who was our psychologist. She made a huge difference.She brought the concept of visualization and processing.”
“Before every game, she’d have us visualizing going out on the field,hearing the Offaly roar, the Kilkenny roar, coming out ourselves, hearing our own roar, getting our breathing right.”
Reflecting back on their success in 1996, Dempsey reckons she was the key ingredient.
“Looking back we were at the cutting edge of psychology 26/27 years ago and that’s the way Liam Griffin was.”
“She was probably the one little extra element that brought us from not winning to winning.”
Tom’s interview with Eddie Scally drops tonight at 7pm wherever you get your podcasts. Don’t miss it!