A STRONG West Cork contingent helped the Cork LGFA U14 squad register three wins and a draw in the opening Munster U14 Championship blitz at the University of Limerick.
A change to the format of the provincial U14 girls’ football grade meant Cork’s inter-county squad took part in the first of two Munster championship one-day blitzes.
This year the provincial championships will be separate competitions to the All-Ireland series. The Munster U14 campaign began at the end of February, a month earlier than normal, and another one-day event will take place in Mallow at the end of March.
All six Munster counties are competing at the U14 age-grade this season, Cork, Kerry, Limerick, Clare, Waterford and Tipperary. Results at next month’s competition will decide the top two ranked sides who qualify for the Munster A final. Third and fourth go into the B final and fifth and sixth will progress to the C equivalent. In another positive move, all three Munster finals will be held on the same date, April 13th, as part of a triple-header.
A narrow victory over an improving Waterford preceded a draw with Tipperary. Cork rounded off their afternoon with hard-fought wins over Clare and an excellent team performance helped see off Limerick.
West Cork was well represented in the opening phase of the new Munster championship with inter-county captain Millie Condon and vice-captain Katie O’Driscoll representing Clonakilty.
The aforementioned duo was joined in Cork colours by their club mates Siofra Patwell and Caoimhe McEvoy. Another Clonakilty player, Ciara White, will be back in action for the next round of the championship. O’Donovan Rossa forward Lia Hogan, rising Gabriel Rangers star Sarah McSweeney featured prominently alongside Fiona Twohig (Valley Rovers), Keelin Murphy (Ilen Rovers), Sophie Collins (Kinsale) and Ella Downey (Bantry Blues).
‘Cork now has a squad capable of coping with having to play that many matches in one day and that showed when we used all 30 in Limerick and didn’t lose a match. That’s a great sign heading into the next stage of the championship, knowing we have players that can come in and do a job for us,’ Cork LGFA PRO and U14 coach Peter O’Leary stated.
The Cork LGFA U14 squad includes Caoimhe Richmond (Glanmire), Abbie Hoare (Bride Rovers), Ava Barry (Bride Rovers), Chloe McGrath (Shamrocks), Fiona Twohig (Valley Rovers), Grace Cooney (Mourneabbey), Jane Savage (Youghal), Katie O’Driscoll (vice-captain, Clonakilty), Lia Heffernan (St Mary’s), May Collins (Aghada), Millie Condon (captain, Clonakilty), Molly Burke (Mourneabbey), Keelin Murphy (Ilen Rovers), Lily Murray (Bride Rovers), Lisa Hartnett (Fermoy), Sophie Collins (Kinsale), Alex Cashman (Youghal), Alison O’Keefe (Grenagh), Ava Healy (Kilshannig), Caoimhe McEvoy (Clonakilty), Ciara Morrison (Bride Rovers), Ella Downey (Bantry Blues), Grace Nagle (Mallow), Jayne Devlin (Cobh), Lia Hogan (O’Donovan Rossa), Megan O’Shea (Grenagh), Saoirse Foley (Banteer), Sarah McSweeney (Gabriel Rangers), Siofra Patwell (Clonakilty), Tara Hickey (Inch Rovers), Ciara White (Clonakilty), Maria Murphy (Donoughmore), Shauna Sheenan (Eire Óg), Grace Rooney (Inch Rovers), Eimear O’Sullivan (Carrigaline) and Nora Falvey (Cloyne).