Ulster Senior and Junior Final Previews

Ulster Senior and Junior Finals Preview



Clones will host both the TG4 Ulster senior and intermediate
finals on Sunday next. In the senior final holders Armagh play
Tyrone. The Orchard girls who reached last years All Ireland final
will start as red hot favourites however the Red Hand county who
last won the title in 2003 will not mind the underdog tag. The
game has all the ingredients of a classic. Both teams know each
other inside out, the counties are neighbours, Armagh have an
ex Tyrone goalkeeper in charge and more importantly the two counties
have excellent footballers and in their semi finals wins displayed
an unbelievable hunger.

Armagh has no injuries ahead of the game. While their team has
not been released it is likely that it will be the same as the
one which comprehensively beat Monaghan in the semi final. On
that occasion the Orchard girls had eight different players contribute
to their seventeen point tally while their defence was as mean
as ever. They also have quality subs to call on if needed in the
likes of Sharon Duncan and Aileen Mc Cooey. The most interesting
tussle of the day and one that will have a big outcome on the
result is that of Tyrone full forward Sarah Connolly and Armagh
fullback Dervla Toal. Connolly is still a minor and has notched
2-12 in two championship outings against Donegal and Down. Toal
on the other hand is more accustomed to playing at half back but
has moved further back with the retirement of Fiona Quinn. With
that said Tyrone are far from a one woman outfit. They did what
they had to overcome Donegal and then hit five goals as they demolished
Down. Their full forward line scored 3-7 between them in the semi
final and will certainly need a watching. Like Armagh they have
plenty of quality on the bench and on Sunday we could see the
return of former All Star Eilish Gormley. This one is hard to
call. Armagh is definetly favourites but Tyrone has a new found
belief. I wouldn’t be surprised if the game finished level.

The curtain raiser sees Fermanagh and Cavan meet in the first
ever Ulster intermediate final. These sides have already met twice
this year, drawing in the round robin stages of the league before
Fermanagh beat Cavan in the Division 3 league semi final. The
Erne girls went on to win the league title and thus secured their
first ever All Ireland silverware. Key to that victory was their
half back line of Tara Hughes, Glenda Fitzpatrick and Aisling
Moane. Hughes is injured, Moane is in the States and Fitzpatrick
was married last week. In fairness to the Newtownbutler centre
back she has delayed her honeymoon in order to play in the final.
The game is also a repeat of last years junior final which Cavan
won 2-9 to 1-9. Player of the match on that occasion was Bronagh
Sherdian who will line out at full forward on Sunday. As this
is the first ever intermediate final both sides will be anxious
to win however at this stage the scales are tipped ever so slightly
in Fermanagh’s favour.


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