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Mary's page-turner in league of its own

THINGS were grim in the 1930s. Mary Moran tells a story in her wonderful book, 'A Game of Our Own, Camogie's Story'.

A Cork player went out for a few pucks on a Friday night. She broke her hurley. She didn't have another. She had a match on the Sunday.

It wasn't just any old match -- it was an All-Ireland final. The girl had begged, borrowed and worked overtime to contribute to the cost of the travel and accommodation.

She knew that no hurley on the Sunday would mean no game. She lived in a hurling heartland.

She called to a hurler's home to explain her plight. He couldn't lend his stick as he had a championship game on the Sunday.

At the second house, the chap said she could borrow his old stick, but it had been repaired several times and it was held together with nails and prohibited banding.


She knocked on her third door. No problem, said the gent. She guarded the hurley with her life.

All ended well, and on the team's return to Kent Station, the gentleman was there to congratulate the team ... and collect his hurley!

Also back in the '30s, Dublin beat Cork in a November All-Ireland final that was played at the Cork Athletic Grounds.

Two late goals from Doreen Rogers won it for the Dubs, 5-0 to 2-3. Dublin's captain, Emmy Delaney, also scored, as did Nuala Sheehan and Ita McNeill. The Dublin side included Agnes Hourican, who would become one of the leading figures in the sport.

She served UCD with distinction and became president of the Camogie Association. She also filled many other roles, and her house always had a welcome as warm as a coal fire.

Mary's book is a treasure. It can be purchased from the Camogie Association on www.camogie.ie