The first semi-final of the All-Ireland Camogie Minor A Championship takes place this weekend at the Gaelic Grounds with two goalkeeping hurling legends hoping to inspire their team to victory.
Two time All-Star, Pat McLoughney, is manager of the Tipperary minor team, while 1995 All-Ireland winner and three time All-Star winner, Davy Fitzgerald, will be running the line for his native Clare.
Fitzgerald, who is manager of the Waterford side that will take on Tipperary in the All-Ireland semi-final hurling on Sunday week, has been helping Fintan McNamara and his backroom team with training sessions this season but will first hope to overcome Tipperary’s minor team this weekend.
McLoughney, who has been involved with Tipperary camogie for four years, is quietly confident of his side making it through the semi-final: “”Well Clare are a fantastic team, they are Munster Champions and they beat Cork in the League so we’re expecting a very tough game. We’ve prepared very well this year and feel really strong. We got Claire Grogan in this year as a selector and when the girls saw somebody of the stature of Claire coming in they knew that we were going to take it fairly serious.””
Clare boss, Fintan McNamara is expecting a tough encounter on Saturday, “”Everything has been coming along grand, we know we are facing into a stiff test but I feel we’ve prepared well. Getting Davy in to help with the training has been a major boost for the girls. I asked him to help out and he has done a fantastic job. His quality immediately made the girls sit up and listen to wat he was saying. It has made my job a lot easier.””
Throw-in for the game is at 1.15pm at the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick and will be followed by the second semi final. Old rival rivals Cork and Kilkenny will square off at 3.15pm with the prospect of an All-Ireland camogie final in September to look forward to.