21 Aug 2010 - Corks Fantastic Run Comes To An End

credit : Sharon O'Keeffe - Cork PRO

Heart Break for Seniors – As all good things must come to an end.

Yesterday in Banagher , Co Offaly – Cork senior ladies footballers met their waterloo when they went down to the red hand of Tyrone. For the opening half Cork seemed to be going through their stride & though the Tyrone challenge was always there despite two serious set backs to the team , Cork it seemed would use their experience & progress , but unfortunately - this was noy to be.

Cork opened brightly with 3 unanswered points , but set back No 1 and Mourneabbey ‘s Ciara O Sullivan , a nifty forward left the field of play with a serious hip injury , so a reshuffle & in entered Laura MacMahon. Tyrone were finding their feet & scores were evenly distributed between the sides; Tyrone had a player possibly a bit harshly - sin binned , & then , Geraldine O Flynn after making another great clearance stopped up with the Cork supporters immediately fearing the worst. With Tyrone having 14 Cork also continued with 14 as the physio tried to work her magic on Geraldine , & though she did briefly return to the field this hugely All Star tipped wing back who had been having a fantastic season had to leave the match with what all hopes is not too long a term injury. Enter Aisling Barret who had been unlucky not to start. Despite these two huge set backs to the team Cork entered the half time break comfortably ahead .

The second half seemed to be a different match we were watching. Tyrone were bound to have their spell of dominance but lady luck evaded Cork throughout the half. The Westmeath referee seemed to have had a different interpretation on some playing offences than what most of the Cork support thought & with it seemed fees going against Cork at vital stages & some unawarded fees not going in Cork’s favour – however one cannot take away from the determination of this Tyrone team – hunger is a great motivator , Tyrone were hungrier on the day than Cork . One very disappointing aspect was the late sin binnings to both Brid Stack & Aisling Barret both in the final minutes which left Cork 13 playing 15 & when two of Tyrone’s goals were conceded. Neither Brid nor Aisling did a dirty tackle as both are honest players & if anything a stern warning & maybe common sense from the referee would have sufficed on both occasions , but he was the man with the whistle & Cork had to respect those decisions.

So despite the fact that this years All Ireland campaign has run its course & reached its conclusion , the achievements & joy these players , managements & all associated with Cork Senior ladies since 2004 which have achieved 7 Munster titles & 5 All Irelands to date in that period will live long in the memory of every rebel supporter. When the girls walked off the field in Banagher yesterday - the Cork supporters in attendance showed just how much appreciation they had for this special bunch of footballers & their management. So it’s time now for the girls to have a well deserved break & put aside their football boots. I am sure all will benefit from the chance to enjoy everyday family & friends & social occasions & next year this wounded team will return more determined to reach Croke Park & win back their All Ireland Glory.

The TG4 All Ireland Championships now have thrown up some exciting ½ finals. Ever improving Kerry will take on Tyrone who are trying to reach their first Senior All Ireland final & the all Leinster clash of Laois & Dublin will see two experienced senior counties also confident of reaching the All Ireland final – whoever will reach Croke Park on September 26th there will be new names on the Brendan Martin & good luck to the 4 remaining teams – may the best team win.

Sharon O Keeffe – Cork PRO.