Gala All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship – Preview
The final round of group games this weekend will decide the four spots in the semi finals for this year’s Gala All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship. Camogie queens Cork have already secured their place in the last four along with Galway.
This leaves three teams fighting it out for the two remaining positions in Sunday’s draw; Tipperary, national league winners Kilkenny and reigning All-Ireland champions Wexford. Tipperary host Galway, while Kilkenny and Wexford travel to Dublin and Limerick respectively.
Wins for Tipperary and Wexford will see them through but Kilkenny have to rely on a Tipperary loss and a victory for the Cats in Dublin to force a playoff. Kilkenny captain Marie O’Connor knows her side are up against it but they know what they have to do on Saturday. “”There are no two ways about it, we have to win. We have to go out there and get the win, after that; well we’ll be hoping that the Tipperary and Galway result goes our way.‘
O’Connor is hoping that Galway don’t roll over against Tipperary in Semple Stadium. “”Galway are through but I doubt they’ll put out a weak team for Tipp. They’ve already made the semis but every team wants to build up the confidence going into the knockout stage of any competition and they way you gain confidence is by winning games. If Galway put out a weak team against Tipp then that’ll give them no indication of where they are against a team of that quality,”” O’Connor said.
Tipperary on the other hand know that their fate is in their own hands. A win will ensure that Tipperary don’t miss out on the last four, something that hasn’t happened since 1997.
Tipperary All-Star midfielder Philly Fogarty believes they are coming into form at the right time despite some bad results. “”The Championship has been reasonable for us so far, we’ve been unlucky in a couple of games, against Wexford we were a bit unfortunate but other years it was Tipperary getting the luck and other teams were missing out so you wouldn’t mid that. Now it seems to be coming together for us at a good time.””
Fogarty knows that the pressure will be on the 2004 champions to get the win with Kilkenny expected to defeat Dublin. “”It’s a very simple situation, we need a win and that’s really it. We don’t want it to have to be coming down to needing a result from another team or needing team to come good for us. It’s in our own hands so I suppose that’s a good thing. I know Galway are through and people are saying that they might put out a weak team against us but I can honestly say that we haven’t been thinking like that at all, it’s about getting the two points and making the semi finals,”” Fogarty finished by saying.
This weekend will also see Cork take on Kilkenny in the All-Ireland U-16 Camogie Final. Kilkenny are aiming for their fourth All-Ireland in a row and their third against their rivals from Leeside. This game will be the curtain raiser for the Gala Championship game between Tipperary and Galway in Semple Stadium on Saturday.
Gala All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship Fixtures
Saturday 2nd August, 2008
Limerick v Wexford – Kilmallock, Limerick – 2:15pm
Tipperary v Galway – Semple Stadium, Thurles – 5:00pm
Sunday 3rd August, 2008
Dublin v Kilkenny – Ballyboden St. Enda’s, Dublin – 1:00pm