Galway hopeful of Kilkerrin-Clonberne representation in Aisling McGing All-Ireland U21 final

GALWAY manager Stephen Glennon is due to make contact with his Kilkerrin-Clonberne contingent today, as he looks ahead to next Sunday’s Aisling McGing All-Ireland U21 final clash with neighbours Mayo at St Croan’s GAA club.

Olivia and Siobhan Divilly, Nicola and Louise Ward, and Sarah Gormally are all members of the Galway panel ahead of the game, but still licking their wounds following last Sunday’s heartbreaking Connacht senior club final replay defeat to Carnacon in Ballyhaunis.

Glennon, who also guides the fortunes of the county’s senior team, said: “I left them on Monday and Tuesday but today I’ll make contact, and see where they’re at.

“They were obviously very disappointed, a huge amount of work and effort went in and in the background, manager John Fleming and his backroom team worked tirelessly themselves.

“But I hope to have the players. In fairness, whenever they were available in the earlier rounds, they made themselves available. We’re hoping to have some of them, maybe not all, but some of them.”

Mayo and Galway clash for All-Ireland glory in the U21 grade but back in July, Glennon masterminded a comprehensive Connacht senior final victory over the green and red.

Unfortunately from a Galway perspective, that provincial win was followed up by a demoralising and heavy defeat at the hands of Cork in the All-Ireland series.

Glennon says that the Connacht final was nice, and reflects: “It was nice, given that it was the high of the season but the low was seven weeks later, when we were destroyed over 40 minutes by Cork.

“That’s what we’re being judged on rather than the Connacht final, which is disappointing.

“It’s always the last game you’re judged on, the last game in the senior championship, despite how well we played in the Connacht final.

“It’s hard to stomach when you hear the criticism that follows a defeat like Cork. In the week or two running up to the game, it looked like were about to hit the ground running but after the first 20 minutes, we fell flat.”

Next Sunday, however, offers Glennon and the players who were involved then a redemption of sorts.

And once again, players, supporters, mentors and family members will honour the memory of Aisling McGing, who was killed in a car crash in 2003.

Glennon said: “I remember, many years ago, meeting some of the McGing family, and I remember how nice they were.

“It’s a long time ago now but it’s days like this that keep Aisling’s memory alive.

“Once you can honour a player that gave so much to the game herself, players respond to that as well.”

***The Aisling McGing All-Ireland U21 final will throw-in at 1.30pm on Sunday, at St Croan’s GAA club in Co. Roscommon.***