WIT Top The Class!

Patricia Jackman celebrates her fifth Ashbourne Cup success.

Patricia Jackman celebrates her fifth Ashbourne Cup success.

Students relish Ashbourne Cup glory

There were smiles wider than the breath of the Suir at its widest point, after WIT claimed the Ashbourne Cup on Sunday evening at Dublin City University.

WIT manager Ann Downey was high in her praise of her squad, who avenged last years’ final defeat to UL, with a six-point win.

“It has been a hell of a journey,” she said. “We went to Limerick in the League and we were well beaten. We were without a physical trainer at that stage and Paddy (Mullaney) came in and really drove it on.

“The girls have great belief in themselves. UL were great champions and they have some brilliant players.”
“We lost nine players from last year. The team we had was pretty new, but you can’t beat heart.”

Ann reserved a special mention for postgrad student and Poc Fada champion Patricia Jackman for travelling from London regularly for training and games.

“Patricia is so dedicated to her sport and her fitness and looking after herself, I’m delighted for her – she never missed a training session and the long weekends travelling over and back to London,” she said.

Picking up her fifth medal, Jackman was thrilled to claim another Ashbourne medal after last years heartbreak.

“Last year was obviously a very tough defeat, and I think people wrote us off this year, because we lost so many players,” said Patricia.

“But the girls came in this year with a great manager in Ann. She was coming in on a mission and to have Ursula Jacob, Paddy Mullaney and everyone in the background.

“We knew that it was going to be hard work, and we have a motto that we swear by since the start of the season which we made up ourselves, and that was ‘work beats talent, when talent doesn’t work hard’.

“That’s what we thought of during the game and we thought of it beforehand. We just made a pact with ourselves that we were going to leave everything out there today and we knew we were fit enough and it was just a matter of going out and doing it on the day.”

WIT's Vikki Falconer holds aloft t he Ashbourne Cup following victory over UL on Sunday. 				| Photo: Martina McGilloway

WIT's Vikki Falconer holds aloft t he Ashbourne Cup following victory over UL on Sunday. | Photo: Martina McGilloway

Vikki Falconer confessed she didn’t realise she was the first Waterford native to captain WIT to Ashbourne Cup glory.

“I didn’t know that, but that is super this day is only getting better,” she gushed.

“I suppose two early goals laid the foundation for us, but after that it was such a tight game. UL are a brilliant team and they really put it up to us.”

Players from Waterford, Westmeath, Carlow, Cavan and Kildare contributed to this win, along with senior counties Cork, Kilkenny, Tipperary, Wexford and Clare.

Vikki Falconer said the victory mirrored that of the Fitzgibbon Cup win for the hurlers last year, where the underdog once again came to the fore.

“We really pulled together. A lot of people had doubts about us coming into the campaign this year, but we got over that, but I think we showed that we didn’t really mind!”

And to be captain of the competition’s Centenary winning side, is something special for Vikki. “It’s amazing really. I don’t think I could really describe what it means to me, not just that be to also be captain of a special group of players.”

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