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Monday 20 August 2018

Finn's tribe primed to have final word against wexford

BOTH teams have played in Dublin already this year. Now they'll return for the biggest day of all.

It's the 80th All-Ireland camogie final. Everybody will be all eyes and ears. The Championship is run in association with RTé Sport. Wexford and Galway were on duty in Portmarnock during the summer, beating the Dubs in the Group stage of the Championship.

For the Dublin-Wexford tie, Davy Fitzgerald was in the building. He was umpiring for his friend, referee, Fintan McNamara. Watching the camogie did the trick for Davy. His Waterford team defeated Galway the following day in the All-Ireland quarter-final.

The Galway camogie side are managed by Noel Finn. They have a professional look. Their one and only title came in 1996. They were runners-up to Wexford last September.

Wexford are seeking their sixth O'Duffy Cup. They ended many barren years in 2007, but they felt they could have had a couple of more since. Their boss-man, JJ Doyle, has the lens focused just right. The Slaney side don't lack pedigree.

Names like Jacob, Leacy and Quigley confirm the rich timber tradition that's there. Mary Leacy is a commanding centre half-back. Her sister, Una, rules the airways like Aer Lingus and Ryanair. She's a majestic centre half-forward.

Full-forward, Ursula Jacob, was the Player-of-the-Match in the Nowlan Park semi-final triumph over Cork.

She hit 1-6, five from frees. Katrina Parrock thundered in the other goal. She is capable of causing damage from the corner-forward location.

In the other semi-final, Galway overcame the Cats in their own back yard. Niamh Kilkenny hardly missed a putt.

Veronica Curtin is one of the modern-day superstars of the sport. She combines the elegance and craft of Henry and Joe.



Flourished

Therese Maher is a polished number six, while Sandra Tannian has flourished in the number 11 shirt. Sinead Cahalan is a class full-back, and there's industry and promise in the sticks of Ann Marie Hayes, Ann Marie Starr, Brenda Hanney and Aislinn Connolly of Galway's cultured Connolly collection.

Claire O'Connor brings vast experience to the Wexford defence, and there's energy in the deeds of Deirdre Codd, Kate Kelly, Lenny Holohan and young Ciara Storey, Martin's daughter.

It might all come down to a golden goal or two. It won't be easy finding a way for the little arrows to escape the clutches of Wexford's Mags Darcy and her respected counterpart, Susan Earner.

The triple header begins at noon with the Premier Junior final involving Down against Waterford, while the Intermediate final between Antrim and Wexford throws-in at 2.0. The Inter final is also live on RTé 2.

VERDICT: Galway

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