One step from Croke Park date

All-Ireland Intermediate Camogie Championship semi-final
Derry v Cork
Sunday, UMPC Nowlan Park, 4pm

By Kieran Lynch

DERRY are just one win away from contesting this year’s All-Ireland Intermediate final in Croke Park, and midfielder Caoimhe Glass is hoping that they can play to their full potential against Cork this Sunday to reach the Promised Land.

To get to this point, Derry have had to be right at the top of their game, and with a return of five wins from six games, nobody can begrudge them their place in the last four.

Glass reflected on how the team have performed this season, as well as analysing her own game, in a year where she has made a positional switch.

“This team has mostly been together over the last few years, but we have got some new faces in this year, and over the course of the championship, we’re definitely seeing things gel together,” said Glass, before she discussed her own season.

“I used to be more of a defender, but I’ve been transitioning into the midfield this year.

2I would be my own biggest critic, so I’m always looking at what I can improve upon; but I have Dervla O’Kane there in the middle with me, and she’s a fantastic player who is always able to keep me right.”

The All-Ireland Intermediate crown has resided in Ulster for the last two years, as Derry have witnessed their Ulster Senior Championship rivals Down and Antrim claim the title in 2020 and 2021 respectively.

Martin Coulter’s side will be looking to emulate their northern counterparts, and with little between them and Down in this year’s Ulster clash (a 1-14 to 1-13 defeat) Derry will know that they aren’t far away.

“As a team, we know that we’re capable of achieving so much more than we have over the last couple of years,” said Glass.

“Seeing Down and Antrim have that success, and us going up against them in the Ulster Championship has definitely driven us on this year.

“We were very tight in our game against Down; it went into extra-time, but unfortunately that didn’t go our way.

“I think Derry have so much potential, but things just haven’t clicked for us until now, where you can see what we’re capable of, and that we have some amazing players within this squad.”

Up next is Cork, who Derry defeated 1-16 to 3-7 just four weeks ago, and whilst it won’t be an easy game, Derry might just have that little bit more belief.

“We know on Sunday that it’s going to be an extremely difficult game; they’re a very physical team,” Glass conceded.

“Yes, we did beat them in the group stages, but we’re under no illusions that it’s not going to be an easy win on Sunday.

“But we have confidence in ourselves, and we know our potential, and hopefully we will be able to reach that potential.”

If they can get over the line on Sunday, Glass knows how monumental a trip to Croke Park would be for Derry camogie.

“It’s what dreams are made of,” said Glass, of a potential All-Ireland final.

“For any young player, they’re dreams are to be playing on that big stage in Croke Park and I know that that’s the dream for every single one of us on our team – to be playing on August 7 in Croke Park, and hopefully Sunday is just another stepping-stone towards that.”

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