Waterford Camogie chiefs could be wishing soon to play all games at the home of the Cappamore GAA and Camogie Club Ground after a Waterford side returned home from the East Limerick venue on Sunday evening last with a win and a title under their belts.Eight days after Gailltir’s brilliant win over Toomevara in this year’s Munster Intermediate Club Championship at the venue a short distance off the N24 between Waterford and Limerick, Waterford’s minor team made their way to the ground on Sunday last to contest this year’s Munster Minor Shield Final against a good Clare side.
There can be no disputing that camogie has come on considerably in the Déise County in the last number of years. We all know about the likes of Beth Carton, Lorraine Bray, Niamh Rockett and Trish Jackman to name but a few and what they have achieved in recent years. What they have achieved is now filtering down through the game and in the two years we have seen young Waterford sides capture Munster or All-Ireland titles at Under 16 and Minor grades and now Kevin Barry assisted by Thomas O’Brien, John Fitzgerald, Michael Power and Taylor Murray have captured another title.
Waterford played with a strong breeze at their backs in the opening half and opened strongly. Aoife Fitzgerald put an early free following a foul on Abby Flynn. But from the restart Waterford and the Gailltir player made no mistake in splitting the posts once she had the ball under control. And when Waterford followed up with points from Róisín Dunphy and Sarah Lacey who was part of the senior set up this year, Waterford were in a very good position.The sign of a good side is how they come back after such an explosive start by their opponents and this Clare side hit back with points from Lorna McNamara and Gretta Hickey to leave just one between the sides in Waterford’s favour with 12 minutes on the clock.
Now it was up to Waterford to show what they were made of and they duly obliged as Abbey Flynn and Clodagh Carroll both struck points and Aoife Fitzgerald hit a brace over the next eight minutes to put Waterford into a five-point lead.But with half-time looming and with the wind at their backs in the second half, Clare put themselves into a very good position going into the second thirty minutes as Robyn Conway hit a brace of scores and Lorna McNamara hit one to leave just two between the sides, but Waterford turned around in a better position as a late Aoife Fitzgerald point gave her side an 0-8 to 0-5 lead at the break.
Clare with the wind at their backs in the second half came storming back at Waterford and it took a point from Aoife Fitzgerald 11 minutes after the restart for Kevin Barry’s side to level matters at nine points each on the score board.
Waterford were having great performances from the likes of Róisín Dunphy, Abby Flynn, Ciara O’Sullivan, Sheena McGuckian, Sarah Lacey and top Scorer Aoife Fitzgerald, and with the subs coming in also playing their part Waterford soon began to get on top again.Points from Abbey Flynn and Aoife Fitzgerald Waterford found themselves in a good position, and then the telling scores came and went in Waterford’s way.
Abby Flynn netted a brilliant goal ten minutes from time, showing all the skill that supporters of the game know she has and moments later another of Waterford’s brilliant up and coming players Sarah Lacey had the umpire reaching for a second green flag.Aoife Fitzgerald rounded off a brilliant performance by her as she grabbed two more scores to secure a deserved win and title for her side.