Dublin v Kerry. TG4 Ladies Football Quarterfinal 2009

Dublin v Kerry. TG4 Ladies Football Quarterfinal 2009

2009 has been very much the ‘Year of the Backdoor’ in the GAA football championship. Two of the semi-finalists, Kerry and Meath who meet on Sunday week next both defeated reigning provincial champions, Dublin and Mayo, respectively, to reach that stage. Ladies football, not to be outdone has produced a similar scenario with Mayo and Monaghan qualifying at the expense of Tyrone and Galway, respectively. On that basis then Cork and Dublin should win through to the semi-finals on Saturday if they are to match the men. The Jackies had a comfortable jaunt through Leinster winning by large margins against Meath and Kildare. Their success in those games was founded on their forwards’ ability to score goals. Ten in two games speaks for itself. Kerry on the other hand appear to have recovered from a fifteen point trouncing by Cork in the Munster final to lose by just one point to Mayo by 2-12 to 1-14 in the qualifiers section. However, they had one more opportunity through the backdoor against Meath which they grasped with both hands winning by 2-19 to 0-8 in the playoff. Now they face the Jackies. Kerry will have the advantage of having played competitive games recently. Dublin hasn’t had a competitive outing since the Leinster final. Nevertheless they will go into this game full of confidence after very successful National League and Leinster campaigns.


Kerry coach, Pat Hartnett, expressed dismay after the Munster final at the ease at which the Cork full forward line won possession and scored goals against them. Seeing the scorelines from Dublin’s Leinster outings he will be hoping that Kerry’s defence will remain solid and not concede in a similar vein in this TG4 quarterfinal. He will be aware that Dublin’s only defeat this year came against the Rebelettes in the Bord Gais Energy National League semi-final although the Jackies had defeated Cork for the second year in a row in the league stage of the competition. Dublin’s management team of Gerry McGill, Mick Brown, Tommy Brown and Michael Ryan know that all of this will count for nothing if the team doesn’t perform on the day. But this Dublin team is a very settled outfit and will take beating. They are strong in defence and counter-attack whenever the opportunity arises. They have a most reliable goalkeeper in Cliodhna O Connor who will no doubt want to keep a clean sheet once again. The Kerry full forward line is the source of most of their scores with the experienced Patricia Dennehy and Geraldine O Shea in the corners scoring regularly in all games. The battles between O Shea and Avril Cluxton and Dennehy and Maria Kavanagh will be worth the entrance fee alone. Noelle Comyn’s experience should prevail against either Louise Ni Mhuircheartaigh or Deirdre Corridan. If the ball supply is cut off to the Kerry full forward line then scores may be hard to come by for the Kingdom. They may then have to look to half-forwards Mags O Donoghue, Aoife O Sullivan or Ciara O Sullivan for their scores. The Dublin half-back line of Colleen Barrett, Sorcha Furlong and Siobhan McGrath will not be found wanting.


The Dublin midfield of Niamh McEvoy and captain, Denise Masterson should provide enough ball to the forward line to create scoring opportunities. The Dublin forwards are all capable of taking their scores and none more so than Sinead Ahearne and Mary Nevin who have scored 6-7 between them to date in the championship. They will be well supported by Elaine Kelly, Kim Flood and Lyndsey Davey. Davey who had a great League campaign has been quiet when it comes to scoring in the TG4 championship to date but this may well be her day. But there’s strength in depth in this squad and Lyndsey Peat or Niamh Hurley could be sprung from the bench at any time. These two between them contributed 3-1 of the Jackies total against Kildare in the Leinster final. It’s obvious that sentiment doesn’t hold sway with the selectors and the battle for places is every bit as keen as that of the Kilkenny hurling team. The Kerry defence will be working flat out to keep the Dublin attack under control. It should make for a fascinating afternoon’s entertainment at Nolan Park, Kilkenny but the Jackies may have a little too much firepower for the Kingdom on this occasion.

Referee – Declan Corcoran, Mayo.

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