Tyrone camogs gunning for back-to-back league silverware

By Niall Gartland

TYRONE camogie continues to make steady strides and joint-captain Siobhan Donnelly hopes they can land league silverware for the second year running when they take on Wicklow in Darver this Saturday afternoon.

The Red Hands won last year’s Division Four title with victory over Mayo, and they’re back on the same stage this weekend with Wicklow standing in their way of a significant pre-championship fillip.

Under new management this season, Tyrone breezed into the league final with an utterly dominant win over Louth a fortnight ago.

Their opponents didn’t score a single point across the hour which says it all about the gulf in class between the teams.

Indeed, Tyrone are unbeaten all season heading into Saturday’s encounter against Wicklow and Donnelly is delighted with how it’s all panning out.

“We’ve had a good league campaign so far so we’re definitely happy and confident heading into the final.

“We’re always looking to improve and get the best out of ourselves so our priority is getting a performance this weekend and hopefully the rest will follow.”

New to the scene this season is manager Paul O’Grady, a former Mayo hurler. He’s joined on the line by Gerard Fox, Liam Flanagan and Niall Donnelly and so far it’s very evident that they are making a positive impression on the team.

Donnelly said: “They’re brilliant, they’re really bringing a level of professionalism to Tyrone camogie that maybe wasn’t there in previous years.

“The level of training is really high and there’s more focus on things like recovery and nutrition after training sessions.

“They’re really motivating, they’re driving us all on. At the start they didn’t really know us and we didn’t know them but we’re a very settled group at this stage.

“In general the last few years have been positive, there’s a massive difference from when I first came on the panel in terms of how much publicity Tyrone camogie gets and so on, I think things are going from strength to strength.”

Tyrone have already played Wicklow this year, a 4-11 to 2-11 victory in Omagh during the group stages. The Red Hands were full value for their win but the only concern was that Wicklow finished the game strongly, making for a nervier conclusion to the game than perhaps necessary.

“I suppose that was early in the campaign, it was only our second match and our new management team was still getting to know the girls and where we play.

“The first half had gone really well, then in the second half Wicklow came out really strongly. Maybe it was a bit of complacency on our part. We’ve been trying to work on ensuring we play at a high level for the full 60 minutes so hopefully that won’t happen again.”

Receive quality journalism wherever you are, on any device. Keep up to date from the comfort of your own home with a digital subscription.
Any time | Any place | Anywhere


Gaelic Life is published by North West of Ireland Printing & Publishing Company Limited, trading as North-West News Group.
Registered in Northern Ireland, No. R0000576. 10-14 John Street, Omagh, Co. Tyrone, N. Ireland, BT781DW