Camogie ladies prepare for league final against Kilkenny

Limerick's Judith Mulcahy tries to stop Galway's Ailish O'Reilly in the Irish Daily Star National League division one semi-final in Birr on Sunday.  Photo: INPHO/Ken Sutton

Limerick's Judith Mulcahy tries to stop Galway's Ailish O'Reilly in the Irish Daily Star National League division one semi-final in Birr on Sunday. Photo: INPHO/Ken Sutton

Galway senior camogie will face Kilkenny in the Irish Daily Star National League division one final in Semple Stadium on May 1, having overcome Limerick by 1-11 to 0-13 in last weekend’s semi-final.

The camogie final is the first of an attractive double header in Thurles with the division one hurling final between Clare and Waterford at 3.30pm.

Galway are the reigning league champions, but Ollie Bergin’s charges will need to improve on last weekend’s display if they are to regain the title in 2016. It took a late injury-time point from a Niamh McGrath free to see off the Treaty women in Birr.

Limerick, an improving side, are making good progress under the guidance of Joe Quaid and John Tuohy. They had beaten All-Ireland champions Cork in a play-off to reach the last four, and it took all Galway’s guile and experience to shake them off.

Galway started well and when Aoife Donoghue latched onto a dropping ball and an error from the Limerick goalie, the three-pointer gave them an early fillip.

However Limerick responded well, and with their best forward Niamh Mulcahy on form, they led by 0-7 to 1-2 at half time.

When Mulcahy, who ended the game with 0-11, pointed from a free early in the second half, the margin was three and things looked a tad ominous for the champions.

However team captain Niamh Kilkenny slotted over a few calming points from play and Ailish O’Reilly also notched a few scores to bring Galway back into the contest.

Bergin and his management team introduced a few substitutes to add some impetus and Molly Dunne hit a good point to equalise following a poor clearance from a Limerick defender.

An unnecessary chop down by one of the Limerick players conceded a late soft free and vice-captain Niamh McGrath made no mistake to ease her team into the final.

Their opponents on Sunday week, Kilkenny, needed extra time to see off Tipperary, winning by 2-13 to 0-15.

Their goals came from Denise Gaule, who hit 1-5 in total, and Julieann Malone.

Others who produced mpressive displays for Ann Downey’s charges were Ann Dalton - superb when moved from centre-back to midfield - and Sarah Ann Quinlan

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