2024 TG4 All-Ireland Finals tickets

All Ireland Championship Series

All Ireland Championship Series
(Michael Forde Leinster PRO)
Wicklow 1-5 Louth 2-8

Its back to the drawing board for the Wicklow mentors and players after they failed to clear the first hurdle on their path to the TG4 Junior all Ireland final. For sixty minutes the Garden County searched in vain for the spark that would kick start their all Ireland campaign.
For the Louth side it was third time lucky, having been beaten by Wicklow in last years TG4 Leinster Junior championship final, and more recently in this years Bord Gais Energy NFL, the Wee county put in a more determined performance than the Wicklow side.
Although Louth were quicker into their stride, the first half was a scrappy enough affair, with neither set of umpires being over worked, only two points (0-2 to 1-1) separating the sides at the break.
Fifteen minutes had elapsed between Wicklow’s first and second scores in the opening period, Niamh Carroll tapping over a free after Amie Byrne was fouled in the fifth minute, Two minutes later Wicklow lost the services of Julie Fitzmaurice, the Baltinglass club player had received a knock to her head and had to leave the field of play, with Laurie Ahern stepping into Fitzmaurice’s position out on the right wing.
Amie Byrne added Wicklow’s second score ten minutes from the break, after the number thirteen latched on to an accurate pass from her An Tochar club, team mate Chrissie Shortt.
Louth were the more industrious, their number elevenCatherine Page testing the Wicklow wood work in the fifteenth minute, when her goal bound shot hit the underside of Emer Miley’s cross bar, the rebound was cleared to safety by the Wicklow backs.
However five minutes later Miley could do nothing about Pages second attempt, the pacy Louth forward firing the ball to the back of the Wicklow net, after an excellent pass from Orlaith Kirk, to open a two point gap in Louths favour at the break(0-2 to 1-1).
In fairness to the home side, they were well aware that they were under performing, and that they needed to step up a gear in the second half, if they were to dominate a Louth side that was growing in confidence.
Louths Gillian McDonnell threw down the gauntlet to Wicklow early in the third quarter with a well worked point, Wicklow’s response came from Monica Lynch, Lynch notched up her first point of the game, after she was put through by Chrissie Shortt.
Two minutes later, Wicklow were awarded a free about twenty metres out to the left of Caoimhe Breens goal, Caoilfhionn Deeney, who has missed a number of games in the Wicklow shirt due to illness, stepped up to take the free, and her lobbed shot dropped into the Louth net to give Wicklow the narrowest of leads (1-3 to 1-2) at a crucial time in the game.
Although Wicklow brought on a number of subs they were unable to capitalise on their lead, each time they attempted the breach the Louth defence they were easily dispossessed, the Louth management team led by Dermot Agnew had their home work done, they were well aware that the Wicklow forwards prefer to carry the ball on solo runs in to the danger zone, and their strategy was to isolate the attacker and break down any Wicklow threat as much as possible, and it was a ploy that paid off on the day.
Wicklow’s one point lead was short lived, Edel McKeown forced a brilliant save from Emer Miley, Miley diving low to her left to push the ball out for a 45m free. Louths centre forward Catherine Page chipped the ball in to square and her team mate Sharon Callan was first to get a touch on the ball to tip it over the Wicklow keeper to raise the green flag and give the Wee county a two point cushion (1-3 to 2-2).
Wicklow’s mentors shuffled the pack once again, bringing on Lizzy Brophy, Eadaoine Lenihan and Mikaela Shelly in an attempt to turn the tide in Wicklow’s favour, but unfortunately for the Wicklow side it was an ebbing tide that could not be turned on this occasion.
Louth added a further six points over the next ten minutes with out reply from the home side, and with the finish line looming, the Wicklow side did not give up the fight, with Lizzie Brophy and Caoilfhionn Deeney tagging on a point apiece, but it was too little too late, Louth were the victors with a six point winning margin (1-5 to 2-8).
Both teams must now put Sundays performances behind them, as they prepare to go head to head once again on Sunday next (19th July ’09) in the TG4 Leinster Junior Championship final, in Dr. Cullen Park. Wicklow are the reigning TG4 Leinster champs and despite last weekend result, both sides start with a clean sheet on Sunday next, so its Wicklow v Louth “Take Two” while Wicklow will be looking to retained the TG4 Leinster title, Louth, were last crowned Leinster champions back in 1998, on Sunday next they will be hoping to take the trophy back to the Wee County.
Log on to www.wicklowladiesfootball.com or www.louth.gaa.ie for all the latests ladies football news from around both counties.
Wicklow scorers: Niamh Carroll 0-1f, Amie Byrne 0-1, Monica Lynch 0-1, Caoilfhionn Deeney 1-1,Lizzie Brophy 0-1.
Louth scorers: Catherine Page 1-1, Edel McKeown Sloane 0-1, Niamh Reid 0-1, Rosanna Heaney 0-1f, Gillian McDonnell 0-3 (2f), Sharon Callon 1-0.Wicklow: Emer Miley (Blessington), Janet Miley (Valleymount) Aisling O’hAnnaidh (Bray Emmets), Lorna Fuisciardi (Eire Og), Lisa Brady (Bray Emmets), Caitriona McKeon (C) Kilbride), Marie Kavanagh (Valleymount), Caitriona Byrne (AGB), Aoife Heffernan (Bray Emmets), Monica Lynch (An Tochar). Chrissie Shortt (An Tochar), Niamh Carroll(Blessington), Amie Byrne (An Tochar) Julie Fitzmaurice(Baltinglass), Caoilfhionn Deeney (Eire Og)
Subs: Laurie Ahern for Julie Fitzmaurice, Lizzie Brophy (Valleymount) for Amie Byrne, Mikaela Shelly (Bray Emmets), Eadaoine Lehinan (Bray Emmets) for Catriona Byrne, Niamh Kelly (Eire Og), Mikaela Shelly, Niamh Coleman (Bray Emmets).
Louth: Caoimhe Breen, Emma Byrne, Sara Quinn, Ciara Rafferty, Edel McKeown Sloane (0-1), Grace Lynch, Jennifer Agnew, Orlaith Kirk (0-1), Sandra Lynch, Niamh Reid (0-1), Catherine Page (1-1), Grainne Macken, Susan Byrne, Rosanna Heaney (0-1), Laura O’Neill,
Subs: Gillian McDonnell(0-3) for L. O Neill, Sharon Callon (1-0) for Niamh Reid, Kelly Cunniham, Irene Hoey, Emma Colleran.
Referee: Pat Kehoe (Carlow)

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