Clare Senior Camogie Manager John Carmody is looking forward with anticipation to 3.00pm on Saturday afternoon in Donaghmore Ashbourne for the throw in between Clare and Derry in the Liberty Senior Camogie Championship writes Clare PRO Brid McNamara.
Carmody welcomes the change to the Championship which he feels brings a bit more urgency into the group stages and sees Clare pitted against title holders Wexford, Galway, Kilkenny and newcomers to Senior grade Derry.
Carmody is pleased with the way preparations have gone, and with the good attitude demonstrated by players in training. However, he is not looking past Saturday's game against Derry. "Derry are a fine team, they have beaten Tipperary and Offaly in the League and won the Ulster Championship last weekend so Saturday will be a big game for them and we'll be expecting a massive battle," he says.
Clare are entering their fifth consecutive All Ireland series without the services of Orlaith Duggan and Katie Cahill, two first team regulars from their run in the Irish Daily Star League as the two have since gone to the US for the summer. However, Carmody is quietly confident that he possesses more than enough quality to at least emulate last year's run by reaching the knock out stages, but that requires an opening victory against Ulster Champions Derry this weekend.
"The last time Clare played Derry competitively, Derry beat them in an All Ireland Final and six or seven of our girls have bad memories of that day in Croke Park in 2007. Derry won't fear Clare under any circumstances and this could be our biggest battle of all on Saturday," he concludes.
Denise Lynch(Capt) (Kilmaley), Sinead O Loughlin (Inagh Kilnamona), Máire McGrath (Sixmilebridge), Carol O Leary (Newmarket on Fergus), Kate Lynch (Kilkishen), Chloe Morey (Sixmilebridge), Laura McMahon (Newmarket on Fergus), Eimear Considine (Kilmaley), Naomi Carroll (Sixmilebridge), Deirdre Murphy (Clooney Quin), Susan Vaughan (Scariff Ogonnelloe), Niamh O Dea (Kilmaley), Sinead Tuohy (Sixmilebridge), Claire McMahon (Kilmaley), Ailish Considine (Kilmaley), Sheila Daffy (Clooney Quin), Lisa Loughnane (Kilkishen), Cushla Hehir (Kilkishen), Vera Loughnane (Feakle), Joanne Walsh (Newmarket on Fergus), Jenny Kelly (Newmarket on Fergus), Rachel O'Halloran (Sixmilebridge), Caitriona Hennessy (St Josephs), Fiona Lafferty (Inagh Kilnamona), Roisin McMahon (Newmarket on Fergus).