All Ireland Senior Camogie Club Final
LAST Saturday was a day the girls from Milford Camogie Club will never forget as they were crowned All Ireland Senior Camogie champions on the hallowed turf of Croke Park after seeing off a spirited challenge from Killimor.
While this was a battle all the way to the finish it was a brace of goals in the first half that did the damage for the newly crowned champions. Marie Watson and Deidre O'Reilly turned the game on its head with two quick fire goals which rocked the 2011 champions to the core and set the Avondhu girls on their way to glory. While this may have been the first time for Milford to reach these heights the result was no flash in the pan as North Cork girls had to win this title the hard way – beating the last two champions (Oulart-The Ballagh 2012) in their last two fixtures.
While most of the plaudits will go to the pair of goal scorers there were a host of other displays well worthy of recognition with Sarah Sexton, Anna Geary and team captain Elaine O'Riordan all shining throughout the final. Others to show their worth on the day were Marie O'Neill and Regina Curtain with the former setting up O'Rielly's net buster. Killimor opened stronger and led the tie after 20 minutes before Milford's brace of three pointers turned the tie on its head.
From here on in it was a battle that Milford were well in control of and their six point winning margin was just about what the Cork side deserved. The scenes of jubilation at the final whistle showed what this game meant to all concerned in the Milford camp with players, management and fans all getting involved in the celebrations.
Front and centre at the moment when Milford claimed the Holy Grail was manager Frank Flannery and he took no time in explaining just what had been achieved by his charges.
"I'm delighted for the girls" he said.
"It's a monumental occasion and although we didn't play particularly well we won. Finals are for winning and that's the main thing. We were a bit edgy but we said if we conceded no goals we'd win the match."
While Flannery was delighted with his sides victory he was only too aware that this title was not won in 60 minutes.
"I think up to today we conceded 2-6 from play all year. We conceded 1-1 today. Eight games and 3-7. That's good. That's what our game is built on. You see our wing-forwards, they tuck back like footballers and that's the way the game is gone.
"We didn't expect Emer Watson's free to go over the bar and it did so that's a bonus. It was a big score at the time and I think it took off from there. I think Anna Geary and Sarah Sexton really brought us into the game as well. It will be a great night and weekend in Milford but all concerned deserve it, we are really proud of all the girls."
After winning this title in the manner they did it is already looking difficult to see past the Milford girls for next season, but for now it will be a well deserved break for Flannery and his magnificent team who will take some quality time to sit back and reflect on what was a fantastic achievement.
MILFORD: R Finn; K Galvin, M Walsh, L Healy; E O'Riordan, A Geary, S Sexton; O O'Mahony, A Thompson; E Watson 0-4(f), D O'Reilly 1-0, A Watson; M O'Neill 0-2, R Curtin, M Watson 2-0. Subs: L O'Flynn (40); D Hayes (56); A O'Flynn (56); E Friel (58); N O'Brien (58)
KILLIMOR: H Campbell; J Brien, K Brien, N Hanney; M Duane, A M Hayes, M Callagy; AM Starr, E Haverty; C Conroy, M Conroy0-5(0-4fs, 0-1 45); , A Brehony; S Keane, B Hanney 1-1, D Starr. Subs: R Groves (39); N Burke (49)
Referee: G O'Dowd (Limerick)