‘What was there today was “the want”. We wanted to win’

June 8th, 2023 3:00 PM

By Ger McCarthy

The West Cork members of the Cork ladies senior football team; from left, Emma Hurley, Melissa Dugan, Laura O'Mahony, Daire Kiely, Kate Redmond, Libby Coppinger, Eimear Kiely and Miriam Forbes. (Photo: Paddy Feen)

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MUNSTER final day was a good one at the office for Cork LGFA’s West Cork contingent in Mallow.

Amid hundreds of eager young autograph hunters shortly after their TG4 Munster LGFA senior football final win over Kerry, the county’s senior West Cork representatives were more than happy to reflect on a terrific performance.

It is not everyday you put 5-14 on the Division 1 title holders and last year’s All-Ireland SFC runners-up.

Two of those goals came from Libby Coppinger as the St Colum’s dual star delivered another quality performance.

‘This is a massive confidence boost,’ Coppinger admitted.

‘All year, we are striving for that full performance. Look, we didn’t get that again today but there were so many positive things and we will take those. You want to be winning a Munster final when you reach it so we are very happy with today’s result.

‘Having variety in our attack is something we have been working really hard on this year. The girls inside were brilliant today, the runs they were making. You are happy to do the hard running when you are getting the results inside.’



Melissa Duggan has been quietly going about her business all year. The Dohenys defender was part of an effective half-back line that included Shauna Kelly and Sarah Leahy in the victory over Kerry.

‘We had two weeks off since the Waterford game and coming off a good win there,’ Duggan said.

‘There was a bit of momentum going and everyone has been working really hard in defence as well as our attack. You see the quality of the Cork forwards, that is what we have to mark in training every night. We push each other on.

‘Everyone was up for this match as it was our third time playing Kerry this year. We wanted to come out all guns blazing, something we hadn’t been doing in the league or championship so far. There was a point to prove today and thankfully, we did. We got the win.’

Michelle and Aprille Duggan from Dunmanway supporting their sister Melissa.



Valley Rovers’ Eimear Kiely contributed a point from her half-forward position and played more a creative rather than scoring role in Cork’s victory.

Daughter of Castlehaven legend Niall Cahalane, Orlaith Cahalane played a pivotal role in her county’s Munster final triumph. Scoring 1-1 and providing the assists for both of Libby Coppinger’s green flags made it another day to remember for the rising Éire Óg dual star.

Emma Cleary, daughter of Cork senior football manager John, came off the bench, as did Valley Rovers’ Daire Kiely.

O’Donovan Rossa’s Laura O’Mahony was sprung from the bench early in the second period and glad to make her mark against a quality Kerry side.

‘There have been one or two aspects of some of our other championship games that we weren’t too happy with but I honestly think the girls played amazing in the first half today,’ O’Mahony commented.

‘What was there today as well was “the want”. We wanted to win. We wanted to win every dirty ball and that was the main thing. Everyone is delighted.

‘Not reaching the latter stages of the national league was disappointing. Some people thought those (extra) games would have been better but I think the block of training that we completed, and even the week off after Waterford, helped sharpen things up.’

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