Epic senior camogie semi-final clash ends level   19/09/2018


Senior camogie championship semi-final


15th September 2018.

Naas 1-10 Clane 1-10


Naas and Clane will meet for the third time in three weeks next Sunday in Eire Óg. Extra-time will probably be required - after another 1-10 to 1-10 draw.

Yet again, this Naas team have raised the bar – and reached the level required to stay alive in this championship. This was the most physical game to date – a bruising encounter. And the Naas girls stood up again – with no end to their fight. This, by some distance, though, was their stiffest and sternest examination.


Naas camogie season-ticket holders certainly cannot complain about value for money in 2018 – the entertainment has been non-stop and heart-stopping. Naas have come from behind in game after game and now head into deep mid-autumn in superb form as a rapidly maturing outfit.

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Naas and Clane put on an almighty show for the huge crowd.

Clane took a while to get going despite the assistance of a fresh southerly breeze. However, a quick-fire 1-1 in the tenth minute got them up and running.

Naas didn’t panic. Obviously, it wasn’t the ideal start, but they stuck at it. Aine Conway got them off the mark with a pointed free quickly followed by an excellent Caoimhe Maher white-flag on the run. 


Clane kept their noses in front with some excellent scores before Conway converted two good frees in the 26th and 29th minutes to leave just four between them at the break. In truth, it had taken a sizeable defensive effort to keep the Clane tally in check. Niamh Tuohy, Joelenne Hoary and the impressive Aoife Fitzgerald kept putting down the sand-bags against the incoming tide.


Anyway, the defence held out – more or less.

The wind still to come….

Half time 0-4 to 1-5.


Naas started the second half in a different mood and were far more urgent. Tara Bedford had a wonderful point after a sweeping move. Hannah Goodfellow then had an inspirational goal on 37 minutes to bring Naas within a point. The pendulum swung alarmingly for the remainder of the hour as they slugged it out toe-to-toe. Controversy was never far away and erupted openly on more than one occasion – especially on foot of an incident which led to the replacement through injury of the Naas star goalkeeper Joelenne Hoary. Regardless, the game went on – fast becoming an epic.

Ice-cold Aine Conway slotted more two long range frees.


Naas began moving the pieces around the board. Aoife Stynes dug in at mid-field and stopped the bleeding there. Ailbhe Ryan came roaring into the game and split the posts with a marvellous effort from the right wing. Kelly Perkins was getting onto more ball, while Fiona Trant was doing damage on the left flank. Sarah Cullen was on fire on the edge of the square and causing all sorts of problems despite being triple-marked by that stage.


This was now an absorbing tussle. Both teams just had to keep going to stay in the game.

Ellen O’Boyle was on as emergency keeper. Dealt with all the house-keeping and got off the long puck-outs. Cool and breeze as they say. Aoife Fitzgerald was outstanding as the last defender down the left in the desperate final quarter. Long relieving clearances when they were really needed.


Amid a frenzy, Caoimhe Maher had her second point to level matters in the 58th minute. Then in the last minute, Naas finally went ahead when Tara Bedford somehow found the space to swing the stick and flashed over her second point under intense pressure. But Clane came again in injury time and equalised at the last whistle. Heart-stopping. Could have won. Could have lost. Live to fight another day.

Chaos.

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Naas have built something special – and they’ve nearly got the hang of this thing now. They’re making better decisions in possession of the ball and will be all the better for the experience. Can deal with any grenade that’s tossed their way.


There's no magic formula. Naas have hungry players who give it their best shot. Let’s see where that takes them.

The replay is this Sunday at 5pm. Can’t wait.


Naas : Joelenne Hoary, Kelly Perkins, Niamh Tuohy, Amanda Davitt, Molly Ryan, Tara Breen, Aoife Fitzgerald, Anna Blake, Aoife Stynes, Aine Conway (0-5), Caoimhe Maher (0-2), Fiona Trant, Hannah Cusack, Sarah Cullen, Tara Bedford (0-2), Ailbhe Ryan (0-1), Ellen O’Boyle, Roisín Tobin, Lorna Kearns, Gráinne Dowling, Síofra Mernagh, Hannah Goodfellow (1-0), Emily Quinn, Kerrie Lewis, Anna Kennedy.


SOTS : Aoife Fitzgerald.








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