by Lauren Flynn
Waterford face Tipperary this Saturday in the Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Senior Championship Quarter-Finals which will be played in the famous Páirc Uí Chaoimh Stadium with throw-in set for 5.30pm.
Waterford are making history this weekend as they play in their first ever All-Ireland Senior Championship knockout tie. The Déise come into the clash on the back victories over Limerick and then Clare in their final group game which secured them third place in the group and a Quarter-Final match versus Tipperary.
We caught up with Waterford star forward Niamh Rockett ahead of the historic clash
Q. Waterford have had an impressive Championship season to date, how would you describe it so far?
"So far, we’re happy with how our season has gone to date, we’re delighted to make the Quarter-Finals, naturally you’d like to be in a Semi-Final straight away but we're extremely happy to be where we are.
"In terms of the League campaign, we were unlucky to miss out on a Semi-Final spot due to score difference so that was extremely disappointing but we’ve bottled that frustration and carried it over to the Championship and we’re exactly where we want to be, in the knockout stages of the Championship for the first time in our history so we’re thrilled at the moment."
Q. How has the team been preparing as you get ready for what promises to be a tough game against a strong Tipperary team?
"Preparation has been going great so far. The minute last Monday morning came around we were focusing all our attention on Tipperary.
"We’ve been training extremely hard to date and there’s no chance of us easing up on our training just because of the game – we’ll be training as hard, if not harder in preparation for what we know will be a tough clash. We know Tipperary are an excellent side and will come with massive amounts of physicality, both forwards and backs, but we know how we can perform and play as a group and if we play with the same toughness and intensity that we’ve been training with, we’ll hopefully come out with the right result on Saturday."
Q. You mentioned that you’re a teacher, how do you manage to balance work and playing Camogie for both your Club and County?
"Yeah, it’s a struggle during the winter and spring months for sure. You’re either going straight from school to training or straight from school to the gym which can be tiring after a while.
"In the Summer however, we’ve a bit more of a break so in once sense my occupation can be a bit of a bonus because I’ve got the time off, so I can prepare well for training and matches. It is difficult during the winter and spring though, you’re trying to prepare for school and for matches so it’s fairly full-on and especially being a teacher, you can’t exactly take days off and just be there when you want to, and before a big game you’re in there until school ends or a mid-term arrives but it’s all about preparation with me. If you’re organised and prepared you’re not worried about when you’re going to get things done so time management is crucial for me."
Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship Quarter-Finals
Saturday August 4th
Páirc Uí Chaoimh
Tipperary v Waterford
Referee: Owen Elliot (Antrim)
Galway v Dublin
Referee: Liz Dempsey (Kilkenny)
*Extra-time to be played in the event of a draw in either game.
Students/Senior Citizens: €5
Under 18s: €3
Tickets can be purchased online from www.tickets.ie and from selected Centra and SuperValu stores nationwide
Tickets will also be available to purchase at the ground on the day of the match.