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Quality keeps rising in Dublin camogie championship

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Mentors are giving their time to nurture exciting young players such as Issy Davis of Kilmacud Crokes.

Mentors are giving their time to nurture exciting young players such as Issy Davis of Kilmacud Crokes.

Mentors are giving their time to nurture exciting young players such as Issy Davis of Kilmacud Crokes.

CHAMPIONSHIP Sundays. The matches will come thick and fast. The Maura Brady Cup will be hard won.

It all began last Sunday morning. The lilt of the All-Ireland senior camogie final still in the air. Perhaps one of the best deciders of them all.

Thousands welcomed Kilkenny home with the O’Duffy Cup. Ann Downey talked about Denise Gaule, who produced the jackpot shot.

A thousand hours went into that one moment. A bag of sliotars in a deserted field. Night after night.

It recalled the exploits of one of Dublin’s finest ambassadors, Ali Maguire of St Vincent’s. The night up in Bohernabreena, Maura Brady’s heartland.

Maguire produced one of the most memorable performances in the Dublin Senior Championship final replay against Lucan Sarsfields – sending over arrow after arrow. From all sorts of angles and distances.

Vincent’s won’t be far from gold. So many treasured Marino days. On the roll of honour with some of the wonderful Dublin clubs.

Distinguished names like CIE, Austin Stacks, Eoghan Ruadh, Naomh Aoife, Celtic, Crumlin, Ballyboden St Enda’s and the champions, St Jude’s.

Dublin’s progress to the All-Ireland senior championship quarter-final has also lifted spirits. It was a tribute to the work that’s going on in the clubs.

Mentors are giving their time to nurture exciting young players such as Aisling O’Neill and Issy Davis.

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As Wexford legend and respected pundit Ursula Jacob, said: “The standard in Dublin club camogie is very strong.”

Dublin won the All-Ireland in 1942, beating Cork in a replay in Croke Park after a draw in the Mardyke.

The great Larry Ryan revealed the replay was the first camogie final to be broadcast by RTÉ. And the first to have a match programme. 

The game, and the world, was a different place back then.

At this year’s All-Ireland final, a minute’s silence honored CIE’s Nancy Timmins, who played on Dublin’s 1961 All-Ireland winning team.

And also Lily Spence, who won the All-Ireland with Antrim, and who became the first All-Ireland winning player to referee a senior final.

Spence did a cracking interview with Jerome Quinn. She explained that all camogie players had to wear black stockings.

Back in the ’50s, a team in Kilkenny lost the county final following an appeal by the opposition. Objecting that one of the opposition players’ stockings was not black but dark grey!

The black and amber sparks must have been flying when that judgment was reached.


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