Adults: €25. Children: €14. Cork Ladies footballers, priceless.

Adults: €25. Children: €14. Cork ladies footballers,



1-11 GALWAY 0-8

Thats how one supporters banner summed up the talents of the team
who won the counties first ever senior ladies football All-Ireland
title on Sunday in Croke Park. The famine that was the last decade
of Cork ladies football has officially ceased. A junior All-Ireland
title in 95 was impressive but nothing compares to this. Smiles
beemed across the faces of players, management, family, friends
and supporters but the reality of what theyve achieved has yet
to sink in. The sea of red and white supporters who cheered for
Juliet Murphy as she made her way up the steps of the Hogan stand
was simply breathtaking and enough to make grown men cry.

With an attendance of over 23,000 the atmosphere was electrifying
with a mammoth contingent of support from Cork and the worry was
the occasion would hinder their vision. But it didnt, Sprinting
out first from the tunnel, the majority of players stayed chin
down so as to assist in keeping focused, whether that was a conscious
or unconscious decision I dont know but it worked. Drills took
place in the right corner facing Hill 16 and perhaps faster and
fiercer than on any other day. The players were introduced to
the President and whilst Galway were in the midst of their formalities,
Cork were jumping, stretching and kicking.

It was the dream start with scores coming from Corks first two
attacks but the tempo quickly plateuxed. The reigning champions
Galway utilised corner-forward Rebecca McPhilbin as a third midfielder
but it did more damage than good as Brid Stack read the game superbly
winning an enormity of possession. Sinead OReilly was the surprise
package giving a mammoth performance and brought her game to a
whole new level from her wing-back perch. Again Angela Walsh was
a rock at full-back while Rena Buckley caused the Galway forwards
to reverse roles with driving runs forward. The Connaught side
soon equalised with points from Niamh Fahy and Niamh Duggan.

Cork remained in control despite a slight struggle against the
seven man backline ploy. Galway awoke following a Mulcahy point
and against the run of play Cork found themselves in arrears 0-3
0-4 at the half. There was no comparison between the two halves
with Cork winning the game on their second half performance. Nollaig
Cleary secured a point to level proceedings but again it enticed
Galway to respond. Full-forward sensation Niamh Fahy found herself
on a blistering run towards goals but as she did all year keeper
Elaine Harte spread herself and the first turning point was spun
with a fantastic save.

If that wasnt incentive enough for Cork to pull things together,
the addition of Deirdre OReilly topped it all off with a stunning
point from her first touch. There was little opportunity given
to the Galway forwards but it was evident Niamh Fahy was over-depended
on, inside. Wing forward Nollaig Cleary was making all the right
decisions and on a number of occasions split the defence with
runs and created room for her colleagues while also adding 0-3
in an All-Ireland final. On the quarter hour mark Cork were awarded
a penalty following the pulling down of Deirdre OReilly and Mulcahy
coolly dispatched it past Una Carroll between the posts.

As the clock ran down the ending was never in doubt with no tricks
up Galways sleeve to retrieve their title. There was no more they
could do realising time had past them by and captain Juliet Murphy
hoisted the Brendan Martin cup to a sea of red and white supporters.
And so here we are a first ever senior All-Ireland title. You
couldnt pick a better team of players. You couldnt pick a better
management team and you sure cant pick a better outcome. There
were three objectives at the start of the season, win the national
league final, win and retain Munster title and bring the Brendan
Martin cup back to Leeside. Thats the ladies Rebel Treble. Mission

Scorers for Cork: V Mulcahy 1-5 (0-3frees; 1-0 pen), N Cleary
0-3, D OReilly 0-2, B Corkery 0-1.
Scorers for Galway: N Fahy 0-3, P Ni Fhlartarta 0-2 and N Duggan
0-2 (frees).
CORK: E Harte, B Stack, A Walsh, R Buckley, B Corkery, C Walsh,
S O Reilly, J Murphy, N Kelly, A Murphy, R Curtain, N Cleary,
V Mulcahy, C Creedon, G O Flynn. Subs: M OConnor for G OFlynn,
D O Reilly for C Creedon, A O Connor for R Curtain, N Keohane
for A Murphy.
GALWAY: U Carroll, M Glynn, R Stephens, A McDonnagh, M OConnell,
A Daly, E Flaherty, A Clarke, E Concannon, G Connelly, N Duggan,
P Ni Fhlatharta, R McPhilbin, N Fahy, L Joyce. Subs: C Molloy
for A McDonough, L Coohill for R McPhilbin, P Gleeson for L Joyce.

Referee: Tony Clarke (Dublin)

Mary White (PRO, Cork Ladies Football)

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