The Galway ladies are heading for the big stage


GALWAY ladies are heading for the big stage.

JIM CARNEY (Sports Editor, Tuam Herald)

after that thrilling, almost heart-stopping extra-time
win over Mayo in the All-Ireland semi-finals (3-10
to 3-9) it’s Dublin vs Galway in the Senior ladies
football decider at Croke Park on Sunday.

The big game will throw-in at 3.10 — timed to
suit the live telecast by TG4 — but viewers and
early arrivals at Headquarters will have a curtain-raiser:
Sligo vs Kildare in the All-Ireland ladies football
Junior final at 1.15. It took Galway and Mayo
almost 300 minutes to settle their private duel,
between the Connacht championship on a round-robin
basis and the All-Ireland series in which the
“back door” system put them together again after
Mayo lost their provincial crown, but now Galway
can concentrate on the biggest game in their history.

Galway and Dublin will both be striving to win
the title for the first time. As far back as 1975,
when ladies football wasn’t as established as
it’s since become, Galway reached an All-Ireland
senior final, which they lost to Tipperary, at
Athy, Co. Kildare.

In more recent times, and with the ladies game
growing rapidly, Galway succeeded at junior and
minor levels nationally, all leading to the challenge
for the highest honours and an opportunity to
take over at the top from Mayo, four times All-Ireland
champions in the past five years — the only final
they lost in that golden era was to Laois.

Dublin, coached by former great goalkeeper John
O’Leary, for so long in his playing days an idol
to thousands of fanatical Dubs up on Hill 16,
had a dramatic late win over a highly rated Kerry
team in the All-Ireland semi-finals.

That Galway were taken to a replay by Mayo, and
extra-time, might make them slightly more match-sharp
now. Dublin would have been restless in the longer
break, impatient for the big day, although playing
the final in their own city is bound to boost
their confidence. They appeared to be in a winning
position in last year’s All-Ireland final against
Mayo, but it ended in a crushing defeat when they
conceded a late goal. It was after that setback
that John O’Leary took over at the helm.

Galway manager P. J. Fahy is more experienced
in guiding ladies football teams; he is joined
in the management team by Richard Bowles, well
known in Cumann na mBunscol circles, and the former
Killererin footballer Mick O’Connell, now of Claregalway
G.A.A. Club. The ladies football finals at Croke
Park on Sunday will be all-ticket.

Galway followers should note that tickets will
be on sale at Terry Brennan’s Central Tavern,
Loughgeorge, Claregalway, daily until Friday at
the following times: today (Wednesday) until 6
p.m., Thursday 1.00 to 6.00, and Friday 1.00 to

Ticket prices are: Adults, €25; students and O.A.P.s
€15; under-14s €10; family tickets (two adults
and two children) €60; groups of ten or more U-16s,
€7 per person and €7 per accompanying adult.

Tickets are also available from Ticketmaster.

The Galway team which defeated Mayo last time
out was: Una Carroll (Corofin); Ann Marie McDonagh
(Salthill), Ruth Stephens (Corofin), Fiona Wynne
(Annaghdown); Aoibheann Daly (Milltown), Áine
Gilmore (St Brendan’s), Emer Flaherty (Cortoon);
Patricia Gleeson (Corofin), Edel Concannon (Cortoon);
Lisa Cohill (Gráinne Mhaols), Niamh Fahey (Killanin),
Annette Clarke, captain (Kilkerrin-Clonberne);
Gillian Joyce (St Brendan’s), Lorna Joyce (Clonbur),
Niamh Duggan (Annaghdown). Subs used: Michelle
Delaney (St Brendan’s), Geraldine Conneally (Dunmore
MacHales), Emma O’Malley (St Brendan’s) and Gráinne
Egan (Whitehall Colmcilles). Other members of
the panel: Marie O’Connell (St Mary’s, Killererin),
injured for semi-final replay; Tina Hughes (Corofin),
Johanna Connolly (Kilkerrin-Clonberne), Michelle
Burke (Corofin), Deirdre Fallon (Dunmore), Michelle
Delaney (St Gabriel’s); Michelle Glynn (Corofin),
Helen Carroll (Corofin), Sheila Fitzgerald (Corofin),
Philly Flaherty (Naomh Ana, Leitir Mór), Sarah
Cosgrove (Corofin).

article was kindly submitted by Jim Carney of
The Tuam Herald



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