Munster Senior Camogie Final
Saturday 21st May in Kilmallock
Cork broke Limerick hearts in controversial circumstances in Kilmallock on Saturday with two late points to seal their 59th Munster Senior Camogie title. The scores came six minutes into added time when the game looked like it was heading for a draw after Niamh Mulcahy put Limerick level just before the end of normal time. However referee Martin O'Shea found seven minutes of added time to the surprise of both sets of supporters and it was Cork's Katríona Mackey who took the chances with a brace of well taken points in the game’s final moments to snatch the victory for Cork.
Rebecca Delee was a late withdrawal due to injury for Limerick before the start of the match with her Newcastle West team-mate Karen O'Leary coming in as her replacement. Limerick started strongly and opened an early 0-2 to 0-1 lead after a point from wing-back Fiona Hickey following an excellent cross field pass that found her in space on the right hand side. However Cork rallied and had drawn level by the quarter-hour mark. They then pushed on in the second quarter and had a three point lead with three minutes to half-time when Chloe O’Brien who was lively throughout broke down the left and pointed from a very tight angle. Katríona Mackey responded for Cork but two points from Niamh Mulcahy one from play and one a free before the break saw Limerick go in at half-time just one point behind.
Cork restored their lead to three points just in the first five minutes after the break with two points from Orla Cronin. Limerick responded and were the dominant team in the next period with Deborah Murphy and Karen O’Leary tireless around the middle of the park. Limerick’s full back line of Muireann Creamer, Marguerita McCarthy and Judith Mulcahy were solid throughout the game as Cork’s forwards continued to make runs looking for a goal but ran into a brick wall. Limerick closed the gap and had levelled at 0-10 points a piece when Fiona Hickey saw red for a second yellow card with three minutes to go.
But with both defences holding firm it looked like a replay was on the cards when Katríona Mackey popped up with the crucial scores to give Cork the victory. Limerick will no doubt be disappointed and had their chances to win the game but they can take great encouragement from going head to head with the All-Ireland champions and pushing them all the way. They will look forward now to their All-Ireland Championship opener away to Wexford on 18th June and indeed a further meeting with Cork in July.
Niamh Mulcahy 0-8 (6 frees), Fiona Hickey 0-1, Chloe O'Brien 0-1
Orla Cotter 0-4 (3 frees), Orla Cronin 0-3, Katríona
Claire Keating (Cappamore), Marguerita McCarthy (Ahane), Judith Mulcahy (Ahane), Siobhán Enright (Granagh Ballingarry), Niamh Richardson (Murroe Boher), Fiona Hickey (Granagh Ballingarry), Karen O'Leary (Newcastle West), Niamh Mulcahy (Ahane), Deborah Murphy (Knockaderry), Mary O'Callaghan (Bruff), Caoimhe Costelloe (Adare), Chloe O'Brien (Ballyagran), Nimah Ryan (Bruff), Rebecca Noonan (Granagh Ballingarry)
Clíona Lane (Adare) for Rebecca Noonan – 53 mins, Noreen Barry (Killeedy) for Mary O'Callaghan – 57 mins