It’s 14 years since Nigel Crawford lifted the Delaney Cup for Meath. Photo: John Quirke /

Provincial record since 2010 makes for grim reading



While Dublin are the undoubted dominant force in Leinster SFC history with 62 titles and 23 runner-up places to their name, Meath are the next most successful county in the province with 21 wins and 22 runner-up spots.

However, the last of Meath's titles came 14 years ago and the current drought is the longest endured by the county since they went from 1970 to 1986 without claiming the Delaney Cup.

There is still some way to go to endure a spell as long as the run from the first Leinster title in 1895 to the second 44 years later in 1939, but unless the run of failing to win a provincial championships is arrested soon that record will be under threat.

What is even more alarming for Meath is that since they last claimed the Leinster title in 2010, they have only made it to the provincial final on five occasions. In contrast Dublin have won every Leinster title since 2010 and that semi-final loss to Meath was the only time in 19 years, starting in 2005 that that they didn't win the provincial title.

After three years of failing to get to a Leinster final, it looks likely that that run will continue this year with the winner's of next Sunday's clash with Longford set to face Dublin in the next round - a foregone conclusion.

However, because of the dominance of Dublin in Leinster much of the sheen has gone off the provincial competition and now the focus for Meath, and Kildare and Louth, is on making an impact on the Sam Maguire.

Luckily for Meath this year their participation in the Sam Maguire isn't dependent on their provincial performance as they have their place secured in the competition because of their victory in the Tailteann Cup last year.

However, for Meath to begin the climb back to the top of the ladder they need to close the gap significantly and firmly establish themselves in the top two in the province.

The provincial record since winning the Leinster title in 2010 is poor. In the 30 games Meath have played in the province, obviously they have lost 13 times, and have managed only 17 wins. In three of those years Meath played just one game, losing to Kildare in 2011, Longford in 2-18 and Offaly last year.

Over the 30 games Meath scored 47-439 and conceded 31-421 which shows an average winning margin of just over two points. However eight of those 13 losses came against Dublin, five in provincial finals. The scores for against Dublin is only 4-88, while Meath have conceded 14-150 in the eight losses to Dublin - an average loss of 11.5 points!

The gulf between Dublin and the rest in Leinster is huge, but Meath need to show more consistency in their games against other teams from the province.

Leinster SFC record since 2010: Played 30; won 17; draw 0; lost 13; Scores for 47-439; scores against 31-421.