Delee double sends Limerick to Croke Park for TG4 junior decider

TG4 All-Ireland junior championship semi-final

Limerick 3-15

London 1-14


Limerick supporters will get another chance to support a county side in an All-Ireland final after the county’s ladies Junior footballers secured their place in the TG4 decider on September 16.

Led by captain Cathy Mee, the Limerick girls had to battle all the way to the finish to see off what was a hugely impressive challenge from London.

The early exchanges all went the way of the exiles with centre forward Avril Kilkelly slotting over the game’s first score from a long range free inside two minutes. London continued to play a possession-dominated game and were rewarded with a second Kilkelly free on seven minutes as Limerick struggled to get any clear sight of goal.

The Shannonsiders did cut through on eight minutes but Mairéad Kavanagh’s rasping effort came back from the London crossbar. London responded with their third point to open up the game’s first sizeable advantage.

Limerick finally got on the board on 11 minutes with a Catriona Davis free, before she doubled her personal tally a minute later. The game was opening up at this point and Davis had a great chance to goal only for her strike to be cleared off the line.

Again London responded, this time with a second free from Mayo native Lisa Cafferky before the corner forward set up Kilkelly for the game’s first goal.

Points from Davis (one) and Rebecca Delee (two) brought Limerick back to a goal down as the game entered the final five minutes of the first half. Another Kilkelly score followed before Limerick finally found the net after some good work from Kavanagh set up Delee for the finish.

The side’s traded scores sending London in leading at the break by the minimum (1-8 to 1-7).

The game opened up after the interval with Limerick challenging stronger in the middle third while London continued to cause problems at the back for the Treaty girls.

Despite all the early promise, London started to wilt as Limerick managed to trouble the scoreboard on an ever more frequent basis.

The introduction of veteran star Dymphna O’Brien would be instrumental to the Limerick win as she bagged 1-3 in her 20-minute shift.

There was more pain for London late on as Delee bagged her second three pointer to end this one and send Limerick through to a first junior decider since 2010, when they lifted the West County Hotel Cup.

ScorersLimerick: R Delee 2-2; C Davis 0-6 (0-4f); D O’Brien 1-3 (1-0 pen), K Heelan 0-2; M Kavanagh, C Mee, 0-1 each.

London: A Kilkelly 1-6 (0-4f); L Cafferky 0-6 (0-4f), K Canavan, R Mills 0-1 each.

LIMERICK: M Giltenane; K Reidy, S O’Sullivan, A Hartigan; C Hickey, N Ryan, M O’Shea; L Hanley, C Mee; C Ní Cheallaigh, R Delee, R Ambrose; O Giltenane, C Davis, M Kavanagh.

Subs: K Heelan for C Hickey (27), D O’Brien for C Davis (40), C Ryan for C Ní Cheallaigh (50), E Ryan for K Reidy (62).

LONDON: R Healy; C Barrett, R Hunt, N Mulholland; N Cocoman, P Marmion, C Twoigh; N Daly, K Canavan; C O’Sullivan, A Kilkelly, R Mills; L Cafferky, F Morrissey, C McGahan.

Subs: B Murphy for F Morrissey (52), C Brennan for C O’Sullivan (57).

Referee: Eamonn Moran (Kerry).

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