CARBERY captain Maggie Coppinger believes her division has a future in the Cork camogie senior championship.
The West Cork division suffered a 2-12 to 0-5 defeat at the hands of St Catherine’s and exited the championship last weekend. Despite the loss, there was still much to be proud of considering the age-profile (approximately 24) of the starting Carbery team.
‘We were missing a few girls today due to their club commitments and their championship matches,’ Coppinger told The Southern Star.
‘It was great that Carbery was still able to field a team and everyone on the pitch played their hearts out. I’m very proud of them all. A few things, like that penalty miss, could have changed the game.’
Missing so many regular starters and fielding such an inexperienced and young starting team meant Carbery were always going to face an uphill battle against a more experienced opponent.
‘This is definitely a team for the future,’ Coppinger said.
‘At the start of the year, we had a lot of girls sitting their Leaving Cert so bringing them up to senior is a whole different ball game for them to experience. The experience of playing at this (senior) level is phenomenal when it comes to developing players.
‘There are loads of clubs for Carbery to select from now even though we lost a few, Newcestown and Enniskeane, because they were doing so well. Things have definitely been building in West Cork and it is great for all the younger players to come out and watch Carbery. They can see that one of their own is out there playing senior for Carbery and that maybe they could, one day, do the same.
‘When I was younger, that really helped me so it great to be able to line out for Carbery now and inspire the next generation.’
Coppinger’s point is an important one as young camogie players from rural West Cork areas should aspire to play senior level.
‘West Cork is so spread out and clubs are much smaller so it is hard to expect a club like ours, St Colum’s who are 13-a-side, to get to the senior championship. That’s why I also love getting out to play for Carbery as I always have a good time here,’ Coppinger explained.
‘This year will be like a building block for Carbery. We weren’t able to field last year. Hopefully, fielding a team this year will make even more people want to come back.’