A Power-ful win
Boss lauds 'massive performance'
As the Wexford supporters celebrated on the pitch, manager David Power took to the sanctity of a spare dressing-room to explain the emergence of his new-look young charges, while just down the corridor Down boss Jim McCorry struggled with the bitter disappointment of defeat.
This was a victory achieved following the retirements of key players, the defection of outstanding midfielder Daithí Waters to the Senior hurlers, and the absence of so many others for different reasons.
It also came on the back of an opening round provincial championship defeat to Westmeath by nine points, having conceded 1-9 in the closing ten minutes in a game Wexford seemed set to win.
'The reality is we have come out of a difficult league campaign. I don't think there is a younger team playing championship football but that is the reality of the situation,' Power said.
'The young players coming on have been exceptional, they just want to play for Wexford, they just want to wear the purple and gold. It's not easy for them, it was a difficult transition, and we suffered relegation, but they worked so hard over the past three months and it's now paying off.'
The Tipperary native, who guided the Premier county to All-Ireland Minor football success, was fulsome in his praise of the players.
'This was a super display from start to finish. It was an extraordinary display but I was not surprised as the players had put in such a huge effort over the past weeks. They played with great heart and passion, showed real courage, but the football played was simply outstanding.
'I looked for a big performance. What I got was a massive performance as the players finally believed. This game is all about confidence,' he added.
'We may have lost to Westmeath but the players took so many positives out of that game. We learned from our mistakes, worked on both the negatives and positives from that game. Given the situation that we found ourselves in earlier this year, this young team has come a long way.
'This all started on Thursday evening, just 48 hours earlier, with the winning of the Leinster Junior title. Both sets of players have been training together, they have bought into the system which is important, and now we are getting the results.
'This week has been wonderful for Wexford football and I would like to thank County Chairman, Diarmuid Devereux, for his support, help and encouragement,' Power stressed.
'We will not get carried away. Now we look forward to the second round draw, see who our opponents are, and hopefully build on this victory.
'The re-development of Wexford football will continue so hopefully we can have a long summer. It's great to be still playing championship football in July.'