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All-Ireland Champions on the brink of Championship exit


Last September Wexford claimed their first All-Ireland title in 32 years when they defeated Cork in Camogie’s showpiece in Croke Park.  However, after two losses in their opening two games the reigning champions cannot afford another defeat if they hope to retain the O’Duffy Cup. 

Kilkenny have re-emerged this season as one of the Championship contenders under the stewardship of twelve time All-Ireland winner Ann Downey.  Following a poor year last year they stormed back to win the National League title with victory over Galway.  Despite this good form the Cats lost their opening game to Tipperary.

Downey feels they have bounced back from that early defeat.  “”We were very disappointed to lose to Tipperary they way we did in the first game of the Championship after performing so well in the League. We came back very well against Limerick in our second game so it’s all looking good now for Sunday’s game against Wexford.””

The last few years have been extremely disappointing from a Kilkenny Camogie point of view but with an extensive and highly successful youth set-up in place the future is bright for the Cats.  An early start back at training has reaped its rewards so far but Downey knows that Wexford need a win on Sunday to get back on track.

“”Wexford have lost their first two fixtures but they haven’t had the easiest of games in Cork and Galway. They are very talented team and we’ll be hoping to get favourable playing conditions. We are a light team compared to Wexford but are exceptionally tough to beat. We’ve got our game plan and we’ll pay no attention to Wexford’s style, Kilkenny are concentrating on Kilkenny and that should be enough,”” Downey said ahead of the game.

In the remaining fixtures this weekend Limerick will host Tipperary on Saturday, while Galway will travel to take on Cork on Sunday.  Newcomers to this year’s Championship, Limerick, will be hoping that they can register their first victory over Tipperary.  Tipp, who won their first two games, will be looking to bounce back after they were on the end of a nine point defeat to Cork in their last outing.

2006 All-Ireland champions Cork will be looking to keep up their 100% record as they look for a fourth successive victory in the Championship when they take on Galway.  This would ensure Cork a spot in the semi finals.  Galway are the only other unbeaten side so far following victories over Limerick and Wexford so they will be hoping to make it three-in-a-row on Sunday.

Saturday, 12th July, 2008
Limerick v Tipperary – Kilmallock, Limerick 1.00pm

Sunday, 13th July, 2008
Wexford v Kilkenny – Buffers Alley, Wexford 1.30pm
Cork v Galway – Pßirc UÝ Rinn, Cork 3.00pm

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