Friday 27 April 2018

All-Ireland victory gives Healy taste for more success

Dublin's Noelle Healy. Photo: Sportsfile
Dublin's Noelle Healy. Photo: Sportsfile

Jackie Cahill

Dublin's TG4 All-Ireland final player of the match Noelle Healy has challenged her team-mates to retain their crown.

Healy claimed her second senior medal when the Sky Blues roared to a 12-point victory over Mayo in front of a record crowd at Croke Park.

The 26-year-old came on as a sub in the 2010 victory over Tyrone and is now an established member of the starting line-up - the St Brigid's player provided assists for two goals during the course of a barnstorming display.

She didn't get on the scoresheet but Healy's selfless performance was recognised with the prestigious individual award on Dublin's big day.

And she now wants the newly-crowned champions to finish on top of the pile again next September.

Speaking at Temple Street Hospital yesterday as the Dublin and Mayo squads both visited sick children there, two-time All-Star Healy reflected: "We said that we were so resilient in coming back after all the losses and we need to show now that we can also do it after a win.

"In 2010, I was only just out of minor, Niamh McEvoy was the same, Fiona Hudson, Sinead Goldrick. We had a lot of success underage and we kind of expected it just to happen for us when we got up to senior. I don't think any of us thought it would be seven years before we got back here again.

Fantastic

"Obviously, we were around at the same time as a fantastic Cork team. We had brilliant battles with them and I'm sure they've had the same success underage as well but hopefully we'll be able to push on."

Healy expects manager Mick Bohan to remain on board to plot Dublin's title defence and, with a healthy age profile in the squad, the Jackies will start as favourites next year.

On Bohan's future, Healy said: "Yeah, as far as I know, he is staying on. We've been talking about next year.

"A lot of us are around 26-27 and losts more are 23-24. Greg (McGonigle) has been brilliant for bringing the younger players through. He's on the minor management team next year with Bobby (McNulty), so hopefully we'll get that success coming through again."

McGonigle was in charge when Dublin lost three successive finals to Cork before they finally cracked it under Bohan.

Recalling her feeling of elation at full-time, Healy said: "We kind of said we'd have no tears, but once the final whistle went we were all crying.

"It was really special, being with our families and knowing that we finally did it."

Irish Independent

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