herald

Sunday 4 December 2016

Dubs heartache as rebels realise their drive for five

Boss Gregory McGonigle still proud of his players as Jackies suffer final for second year in a row

Dejected Dublin players Niamh McEvoy, left, and Sorcha Furlong, watch the presentation from the pitch after the game
Dejected Dublin players Niamh McEvoy, left, and Sorcha Furlong, watch the presentation from the pitch after the game

A BLUE river headed down the Clonliffe Road yesterday afternoon. The sun was out.

Good Vibrations was on the radio. Over 31,000 in the theatre.

A compelling clash. Cork’s Drive for Five, and their tenth title, had found a nice parking space, 0-12 to 0-10.

But Dublin left it all out on the Croke Park pitch. They kept it alive-alive-o until the hooter sounded.

Eamonn Ryan thought as much. He came into the press room with all the excitement of a man out walking his dog.

But he admitted: “I thought it would never end, especially when Dublin pulled it back to a point.”

In the build-up on Leeside, he said there was no talk of records.

“It was only brought up at the press night or when somebody rang me.”

Briege Corkery was reading from the same gospel. With Rena Buckley, she was collecting her 16th All-Ireland medal between football and camogie.

key

“A key thing was to try and stop Dublin scoring a goal,” noted Briege.

The victory was built on the defensive red wall. And Cork’s guile.

They wore sticky gloves. And they showed impressive mobility.

One of their heroes from last year’s success, Geraldine O’Flynn, had to leave the stage injured. “We were worried about that, but Róisín Phelan came in and saved our bacon,” reflected Ryan.

It was 0-5 each at the turn. The breeze wasn’t helping.

The tempo was quick.

Cork attacked the Hill end in the second period. Valerie Mulcahy’s left peg sent over the first three points.

Doireann O’Sullivan increased the gap to four. The Dubs were chasing. And chase it they did. Unfortunatey, they suffered final heartache for the second year in a row to the same opposition.

“I’m very proud of Dublin. We have a very young side. Everybody in the media had us written off,” stated Dublin manager Gregory McGonigle.

“But our girls stuck with the game plan we had set out. We ask every player to be the best they can be, but we came up against a very good Cork side.” 

Martinn Connolly’s Louth cruised to a 22-point victory (4-12 to 0-2) over Scotland in All-Ireland Ladies JFC final. Beaten finalists in 2010 and 2012, Louth finally managed to seal the deal in the junior grade as they captured their first All-Ireland crown since the 1999 intermediate success.

Scotland were outclassed from start to finish, failing to score from play as Louth scored 2-6 in each half.

Pat Sullivan’s superb Waterford hammered Kildare 3-14 to 0-10 to claim a stunning victory in the TG4 All-Ireland Ladies IFC final.  The Déise, beaten finalists in 2010 and 2012, finally regained senior championship status as Kildare, who regraded to the intermediate ranks this year, suffered a heavy defeat.

SCORERS - Cork: V Mulcahy 0-7 (6f), D O’Sullivan 0-2, R Buckley, C O’Sullivan, E Scally 0-1 each. Dublin: C Rowe 0-6 (5f), A Connolly, N McEvoy, L Davey, S McCaffrey 0-1 each.

CORK: M O’Brien; M Ambrose, B Stack, A Barrett; V Foley, D O’Reilly, G O’Flynn; R Buckley, B Corkery; C O’Sullivan, A Hutchings, A Walsh; V Mulcahy, A O’Sullivan, D O’Sullivan. Subs: R Phelan for O’Flynn (inj, 16); R Ní Bhuachalla for Walsh (22); E Scally for A O’Sullivan (39); O Finn for Hutchings (42).

DUBLIN: C Trant; O Carey, M Ni Scanaill, F Hudson; S Furlong, S Finnegan, C Barrett; M Lamb, S Goldrick; N Healy, A Connolly, C Rowe; N McEvoy, L Davey, H Noonan. Subs: K Flood for Noonan (ht); S McCaffrey for Connolly (22); N Owens for Barrett (40); N Collins for Hudson (49); N Rickard for Lamb (61).

REF: J Niland (Sligo).

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