FORMER Mayo captain Niamh Kelly paid a heavy price for her bravery while helping Adelaide Crows to victory over Collingwood in round four of the Women’s Australian Football League today.
Kelly had provided plenty of spark on her recall for the reigning champions, but then dislocated her shoulder in the third term following a goal-saving smother.
Australian media were full of praise for her courage, the ABC website reporting: “Niamh Kelly kept the Crows in front with a desperate lunge in the defensive goal square. But the Irish defender dislocated her right shoulder in the process and played no further part in the game.”
By then, Kelly had tallied nine disposals, one mark and four tackles. In her absence, the Crows survived a late surge from their Collingwood hosts, who were chasing a fourth straight win.
The Magpies almost secured a share of the spoils at Victoria Park, but Steph Chiocci’s late snapshot few wide as Adelaide overcame some wayward kicking to win by 21-16.
Mayo’s Sarah Rowe (ten disposals and five tackles) and Cavan’s Aishling Sheridan (four disposals and one tackle) both featured for Collingwood.
Orla O’Dwyer of Tipperary played her part as the Brisbane Lions registered a statement 15-point success over fellow contenders Melbourne, who had kicked the opening three goals but still ended up on the wrong side of a 42-27 defeat at Casey Fields.
O’Dwyer accumulated eight disposals and nine tackles against a Demons team that included Armagh’s Bláithín Mackin (eight disposals, four tackles). Brisbane, one of just two unbeaten teams, go top of the table.
Fermanagh’s Joanne Doonan registered five disposals and two tackles for Essendon but couldn’t prevent the Bombers falling to a narrow 26-24 loss against the Richmond Tigers.