Thursday 23 May 2019

Neary's plea to fans - it's time to turn up or shut up

Camogie President Catherine Neary
Camogie President Catherine Neary

Cliona Foley

People must stop playing lip-service to women's sports but support them by actually going to their games, according to camogie president Catherine Neary.

"I'm tired asking people to go to games, it's time they stopped talking about it and just did it," she said at the launch of the Liberty Insurance All-Ireland camogie championships which start on June 10.

Last year's All-Ireland semi-finals and this year's Division 1 league final were played in conjunction with big men's games and Neary said such double-headers were "a no-brainer' wherever possible.

"There were people there who hadn't seen a camogie game for 20 years and they couldn't believe the skill and speed of the game," she said of last year's semi-finals which both went to extra-time in a treble-header in Thurles with the Kilkenny/Waterford hurling replay.

"The simplest thing you can do to support female sport is to go and watch it. Why wouldn't you support your own club player, your county and your game?"

Kilkenny followed up their first All-Ireland in 22 years by beating Cork again in this year's league final and face Waterford in their opening game of their title defence.

Former champions Cork recently lost to Limerick, while Offaly pushed Kilkenny to a point in the Leinster final, indicating a significant levelling in standards. "There aren't the one-sided games that there were even a few years ago," Limerick captain Niamh Mulcahy said.

"At the moment you're probably looking at Cork, Kilkenny, Galway and Wexford to come through but any of the chasing pack would now fancy beating each other on any given day."

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A 'Cairde Camogie' season ticket, which covers all matches including the All-Ireland finals, costs €45.

2017 Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Championships

Week 1 - Saturday, June 10

Senior: Waterford v Kilkenny, Dublin v Clare (group 1), Tipperary v Cork, Limerick v Offaly.

Intermediate: Wexford v Kilkenny, Derry v Kildare, Antrim v Tipperary (group 1), Cork v Galway, Down v Carlow, Meath v Laois.

Irish Independent

The Throw-In: Limerick’s uphill task, Tipp’s ruthlessness and can Cork push on?

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