Suzuki Ladies Semi-finals - Intriguing clashes in prospect

Suzuki Ladies Football National league Semis — Intriguing clashes in prospect

The Semi-finals of the Suzuki Ladies Football National League have thrown up intriguing clashes on Sunday. Kerry v Galway. Austin Stack Park Tralee Sunday 6th Of April. At 1.45pm.This is the clash of 2 counties with a great football tradition in the men’s game and how fitting it will be when the two teams line out before the vital Kerry- Armagh men’s league clash. Kerry have a tremendous tradition in Ladies Football and like their Male counterparts they lead the roll of honour at National level. With 11 titles, but for a Co with such a proud tradition they have seen lean times during the past decade with Waterford the kingpins in Munster. The failure of the Waterford the league holders to make the playoffs show the game is changing slowly but surely with the new kids on the block, Galway, on the wings ready to mount a serious challenge for major titles.

Whether Sunday will see another rise in their spiralling road to the top remains to be seen. The fact that Kerry are in their own backyard is a huge factor and certainly worth a few scores. Galway have proved in the recent past that tradition means little and they have had a massive league campaign to date after taking the Junior crown last year.They possess youth an enthusiasm and a fanatical desire to achieve.They have a sound defence with keeper Johanna Connolly, fronted by fine pivotal defenders in Aine Gilmore and Ruth Stephens, a solid midfield partnership of Rita Kearney and Lisa Coohill. Gillian Joyce is lethal in front of goal, Geraldine Conneally knows where the posts are as well. Patricia Gleeson played well in the Semi final before injury struck, her replacement Anne Clarke did her chances for inclusion no harm.

Kerry on the other hand like Galway have shown great form to date their team is a blend of youth and experience with their Capt Geraldine O’Shea a veteran with over 40 Irish caps in soccer to her credit. Their real strength is in attack with the precocious Kacey O Driscoll a talented and skilful player a menace to any defence Patrice Dennehy is another player to watch. Laura Ross and Katie Kenneally are very young but have great heart a tough one to call but Kerry with home advantage get the vote, but it should be close.

All-Ireland repeat Of 2001

Mayo V Laois Ballinrobe Sunday 3pm The other semi-pits the All-Ireland finalists of 2001 in opposition at Balinrobe at 3pm On that occasion Laois won with a last ditch point scored in controversial circumstances. Cora Staunton came deep into defence to collect a kick out and was inside the designated area, giving Laois a last free kick chance which they converted to take that elusive title few outside Mayo would have begrudged them the title after many frustrating All-Ireland Losses.

On Sunday they have most of their players back and in Tracy Lawlor they possess one of the most talented footballers in the country just now. Sue Ramsbottom is still around and overall they have a very balanced look to their side. Mayo of course the team of the past 4 years will treat this game with championship fervour their entire team are house hold names and with Cora Staunton orchestrating the attack they will be very hard to stop. There is a slight doubt about Staunton taking her place but the other forwards including the Heffernan sisters Marina and Christine as well as the returned Diane O’Hora are well capable of being match winners in their own right .Laois showed tremendous form in the semi against Monaghan, but with home advantage Mayo should prevail.

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