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Published: 09:08 | 20/7/16

Connolly learning to cope with provocation

Dublin's Diarmuid Connolly is learning to cope better with the provocation he faces on a regular basis.

Connolly is no stranger to controversy having been sent off when he reacted to Mayo's Lee Keegan taunts during Dublin's All-Ireland SFC semi-final win last August – he subsequently had red card overturned by the Disputes Resolution Authority when Keegan admitted he had tried to get a reaction from his opponent.

On Sunday, Connolly hauled James Dolan to the ground after the Westmeath player had tousled his hair during the first half of Dublin's Leinster final victory, with manager Tom Cribbin later revealing his team had gone out to get Connolly 'excited'.

The player himself admits he is used to being targeted and is working hard to keep his emotions in check.

“It’s very much out of my control what other teams are trying to do to opposition players. I just have to embrace that and try to play my own game, that’s all I can do," Connolly is quoted as saying in the Irish Examiner.

“Is it hard? Not really, no. I’ve learned to deal with it a little bit. You just have to take it play by play and try to get on the ball and make things happen.

“Of course you learn. You are more experienced, this is my tenth inter-county season now so you learn and you grow as you get older, I suppose.”

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