Intermediate football final between Scartaglen and Dr Crokes is really too tight to call a winner
RANDLES BROS COUNTY LADIES SFC FINAL
Southern Gaels v Finuge St Senans
Sunday, October 2
Fitzgerald Stadium at 4pm
It could be said that the meeting of Southern Gaels and Finuge/St Senans is a coming together of the old and new firm at the top table of ladies' football in Kerry.
Clad in green will be the aristocrats from the south of the county, Southern Gaels, against the new money from the north, Finuge/St Senans, who will tog out in their impressive looking black jerseys with red stripe.
Southern Gaels are well versed in winning senior county championships and as defending champions they will go into the final as favourites, especially after their dismantling of Castleisland Desmonds by 13 points in the semi-final.
The champions path to the final has been pretty impressive. Desmonds gave them a tough enough game in Round 1 but they eventually came through by 1-15 to 1-10.
They hammered a depleted Finuge/St Senans by 3-12 to 0-8 in Round 2, and in Round 3 they blitzed old rivals Rathmore by 4-14 to 1-6. Na Gaeil were easily dispatched on a 7-8 to 1-9 score line in Round 3 and then there was the victory over Desmonds in the semi final.
Finuge/St Senans hammered Na Gaeil by 6-11 to 0-12 in Round 1 and overcame Desmonds by 4-13 to 3-6 in Round 2.
They travelled light to Southern Gaels in Round 3 and went down 13 points whilst Rathmore gave them a walkover in Round 4. Their semi-final against Na Gaeil was a ding dong affair but they just about edged matters by a single point.
Southern Gaels will look to Rachel Dwyer to produce the excellent form that she has been showing throughout the Championship and the talented Waterville girl will be key to their chances of retaining their title.
Siofra O’Shea is a brilliant foil for Dwyer, and with excellent support coming from the power of the O’Connell sisters Megan and Ellie, Caoimhe Teahan at centre half back, and the excellent netminder Mary Ellen Bolger, Southern Gaels have strength in numbers throughout the field.
Finuge/St Senans have enjoyed a meteoric rise through the ranks since claiming the Junior A title in 2017 when they followed up with the Intermediate gong in 2020 and they now stand on the steps of ultimate glory at senior level.
Miriam O’ Keeffe and Niamh Carmody have been outstanding throughout their campaign with Louise Galvin a defensive lynchpin at centre half back, whilst Patrice Diggins, Jackie Horgan and Caitriona Dillon are all fine performers.
The match ups will be interesting. Louise Galvin will more than likely face off with Siofra O’Shea and Sarah Murphy tasked with Rachel Dwyer.
Finuge/St Senans play to a system where they put bodies behind the ball and break at pace with either O’Keeffe or Carmody, or both, inevitably involved. If Southern Gaels hope to retain their title they will have to figure out how to deal with Finuge/St Senans brilliant counter attacking.
As defending champions Southern Gaels, managed by Dan Fitzpatrick, should have the wherewithal and experience to defeat the Joe O’Flaherty managed Finuge/St Senans side on the big day.
The north Kerry side won’t be overawed though and will fancy their chances if they can keep the score tight coming into the final quarter.