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Ladies News

September 27th, 2011

There was heartbreak on Sunday last for the Monaghan girls and indeed for everyone involved as they lost out to a very experienced Cork side in a thrilling All Ireland final. Hopes were high,as this group of players have shown all year that they are back at the highest level. Unfortunately they came up against a very experienced Cork side, many who have 5 senior championship titles under their belt, and who were out for revenge after being stopped in their tracks for 6 in a row last year.
It’s hard to put into words what the players, management and everyone involved must feel. This team have brought us all on a wonderful journey this year. They started their league campaign travelling to Kildare, Galway, Mayo and Laois securing full  points from each. Their 2 home games against Tyrone and Cork also saw them take full points. In fact that game in Emyvale was the only game this year where Cork were defeated.
Having won all games in the group stages,they met Laois in the semi final where unfortunately on the day things didn’t go to plan. They re grouped for the championship and after convincing wins against Armagh and Down, they reached another Ulster final. Once again they excelled beating Tyrone to reclaim the Ulster title. Next up was Meath and once again Monaghan showed what a formidable side they are. They were drawn against Kerry in the semi finals and yet again their tremendous team spirit and never say die attitude were obvious for all to see. A tremendous victory ensured them of a place in the All Ireland final against Cork.
The stage was set and the whole county were looking forward to the big game. Thousands turned out to give these girls the support they deserved and what a performance they put in. From start to finish they used up every ounce of energy they had, they pushed themselves to the very limit. Yes they made mistakes. But who doesn’t. In the course of every game, mistakes are made. In most cases you get away with some of them. But unfortunately for Monaghan, they didn’t. Right up to the final whistle the girls gave  100%. You couldn’t ask more of them. They deserved a result but perhaps the experience of the Cork girls was the major factor.
The scenes at the end of the game were heartbreaking. Looking at the girls in the middle of Croke Park brought many a tear for the large Monaghan supporters present. Many of us have been through the disappointment of losing in Croke Park before. We know what the players are feeling.  No words of consolation will make them feel any better just now, but listening to many experinced people after the game, the belief in this team is still as strong as ever. Some of the players can now take a well deserved break. Some have still very important club games to come . But one thing is for certain, this group of girls and their management can hold their heads up high. They are still a very young team and I hope that when they give themselves time to reflect, they will realise that there is still the very real possibility of each and everyone one of them being on the team that will bring the Brendan Martin cup back to Monaghan.
To each and everyone of the team and management,I would once again say well done. Your efforts may not have been rewarded with silverware this time round, but as the saying goes
”  The mark of a great player is in his ability to come back. The great champions have all come back from defeat”
And like many others I believe this is exactly what this group of players will do
Finally on behalf of Monaghan ladies county board , I would like to thank everyone who has helped with our county team over the past year. To all those who took part in our sponsorship draw at the beginning of the year, to those who have given donations or sponsored a player or supported our fundraisers ,a big thank you. To Owen who organised the food on a weekly basis for the team and To all those on the county board who put in so much effort over the past number of weeks thank you once again.
All focus now is on our clubs who take to the field this weekend in the Ulster championship.
In the junior championship Inniskeen are in action on Saturday 1st October when they take on St Pats from Fermanagh. Venue for this game is St Pats Donagh. Throw in 2pm. Inniskeen have been in impressive form this year and should they play to their ability, will take some beating.
In the intermediate championship, Monaghan Harps have home advantage when they take on Fermanagh champions Lisnakea on Sunday 2nd October. Throw in 2pm.  It is great to see Monaghan Harps back in Ulster club action again after quite a lengthy break. They have been successful in Ulster before and they have the talent to be successful again.
In the senior championship, Donaghmoyne who won their 9th county title in a row, take on St Galls of Antrim. This is a home venue for Donaghmoyne with the game scheduled for Sunday 2nd October at 2pm. Donaghmoyne will want to make amends for last year’s defeat in the Ulster final and from watching them so far this year, they look well fit to regain their Ulster title , and indeed go further.
On behalf of the county board we wish Inniskeen, Monaghan Harps and Donaghmoyne the very best of luck.

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