Verdict set to sway in Sligo's favour

has to sway in Sligo’s favour 

By Joe Callaghan

on above image to go to web site

How confident can we be about this Sligo side’s
chances at Croke Park on Sunday next? Yes, without
doubt, Kildare will be the toughest test yet for
a team that have somewhat coasted through to this
stage. The Connacht final victory over Leitrim
was close for long periods, but really Sligo never
looked troubled. And as for the All-Ireland semi-final
encounter with Cork, it proved to be nothing more
than shooting-practice for Kathleen Kane’s outfit.

But you can merely contend with what is put in
front of you and Sligo have done that emphatically,
and with supreme style.

But Kildare are indeed somewhat of a different
prospect; a tough, gritty, physical side that
have been there before and a team that will surely
be ravenous for success after previous failures
at the final hurdle. It is the physical nature
of the ‘Lillywhites’ that will cause the Connacht
champions of the past two years the most problems.
Kane’s Sligo are a very young squad Ð 10 of the
starting 15 in the Connacht final were in their
teens and this may prove to be the team’s one

But whatever this side lack in size and physicality
is made up for with some awe-inspiring skill.
The free-scoring pair of Stephanie O’Reilly and
Cloonacool’s Louise Brett are a challenge for
any team to contain and it is in these outstanding
forwards where Slogs hopes appear to rest. To
the point of over-reliance their partnership has
seen Sligo through to this stage, now they must
once again show that almost telepathic relationship
and help to forge Sligo’s path to final glory.

If Sligo’s forwards hold the key to eventual victory,
then it is the six defenders who must provide
them with the opportunities to win the game by
setting up attacks and shutting out Kildare’s
imposing attack. The ever-reliant pair of Fiona
Maye and Ruth Goodwin are eternally solid, if
anything Goodwin’s slick ball-playing skills are
a touch wasted in the extremity of corner-back.
Jackie Mulligan’s leadership will be pivotal from
centre-back and will form a near-impregnable half-back
line along with the experienced Michelle McGowan
and Caroline Currid, a St Mary’s player.

Having witnessed this Sligo side’s on-the-field
prowess and off-the-field team spirit, they will
be thinking about nothing else other than claiming
the most famous victory in their history. And
why not? With their displays up to this point,
they have nothing to fear and everything to be
confident about.

A win on Sunday would surely galvanise Kathleen
Kane’s outfit for future campaigns and could herald
the beginning of a golden era for Ladies Gaelic
football in this county.

article was kindly given to us by The Sligo Weekender




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