By Shaun Casey
TWELVE months on from their heart-breaking extra-time defeat to Granemore in the Ulster semi-final, Crosserlough camogs are back in the last four and eyeing up redemption for what happened last year when they face Down champions Kilcoo on Saturday.
“We’re looking forward to the weekend,” says Crosserlough boss Michael Carr. “We were knocked out at this stage last year by a point after extra-time against Granemore, so we’re hoping to redeem ourselves this year and go one step further than we did last year.
“Kilcoo won’t be easy to beat because they were in the Intermediate final last year and An Riocht beat them, but they got back to it this year and won so it won’t be an easy game, especially up in Kilcoo but we’re fairly confident we’ve prepared well and we’re fairly confident we can get through it.
“Last year did hurt, it was a very close game, but we felt like, especially in the first half of extra time, that we left a lot of chances behind us.
“That game really hurt afterwards. Maybe we were lucky to get to extra-time but we should have pushed on and won it. We had two or three goal chances, but we didn’t take them so that left a sting.
“It was hard to get over and even at the start of this year’s campaign in Cavan, it took us a while to get going. But come county final time we were back on track and there’s a buzz about Saturday now because the girls really want to redeem themselves.”
The former Cavan hurling manager admits that his side don’t really know what they’re coming up against this weekend as the knowledge and information of their Down opponents is in short supply.
“It’s very hard to find anything out about them so it’s hard to know where we stand with them, but we’ll give it a rattle come Saturday anyway,” added the Galway native.
“A lot of people in Crosserlough didn’t even know Kilcoo had a camogie team, but I saw one of their games last year, I got my hands on a bit of footage, they look a strong, physical team.
“They have a bit of pace out around the middle of the field so they’re going to be no pushovers. When you go to Ulster, every game is a battle, there’s no easy games in Ulster.”
In Saturday’s second semi-final, Armagh champions Granemore host Derry outfit Newbridge as they attempt to return to the final for the second time in a row.
They were in quarter-final action last weekend, defeating Loughgiel’s second string 0-14 to 1-9 with Corinna Doyle producing a superb display on a day when the elements caused issues for both sides.
Newbridge have been out of action for a while with their Derry Intermediate title arriving at the start of last month.
It was a real battle though, but they defeated Kilrea 0-16 to 3-5 to triumph, with Rebecca Bradley, also set for football action with Moneyglass, lifting the trophy for her side.