Weekend Preview- Offaly stand between Kilkenny and semi final spot, while under 16s hope to make it four from four with Banner victory

by on the 27th of July 2016

Saturday 30th July 2016 
Liberty Insurance Senior Camogie Championship Quarter Final
Kilkenny vs Offaly
Venue: McDonagh Park, Nenagh, Co. Tipperary 2.30pm Referee: Cathal Egan (Cork)

The Kilkenny senior camogie team will hope to bounce back from the disappointment of their recent defeat to Galway in the final round of the All Ireland series when they take on Offaly in the All Ireland Quarter Final in Neangh on Saturday.

The Kilkenny team finished just behind the aforementioned Galway on nine points while Galway finished the campaign on the maximum twelve points from the four games. The Cats bounce back from the disappointment of a Leinster semi final defeat to Wexford with a good opening round All Ireland series victory away to Derry on a 5-24 to 2-03 score line. They followed this up with a 2-12 to 0-10 point’s victory over a determined Dublin side. In the third round they travelled to Thurles to take on Tipperary in a repeat of the League semi final where the Premier County pushed Kilkenny all the way where two extra time goals by the Cats was the difference. The championship clash was a different affair as Kilkenny proved too strong for Tipperary on a 1-21 to 0-11 points score line. This clash set up a top of the table clash with Galway where the victors would top the group and progress through to the semi final with the losers going through to the Quarter Final. A gallant second half display  by the Westerners led by a Ailish O Reilly was the difference as Galway emerged victorious on a 1-12 to 0-10 points score line, with Galway progressing through to the semi finals and Kilkenny setting up Saturdays Quarter Final clash with Offaly.

Offaly on the other hand were very unlucky not to progress through to the semi finals as they finished tied on twelve points with Cork and Wexford but finished third in the table as a result of score difference with Cork finishing top followed by Wexford and the aforementioned Offaly. They bounce back from a heavy Leinster final defeat to Wexford with an opening round All Ireland series victory over Clare 1-16 to 1-11. They followed this up with a 2-14 to 1-07 victory over Wexford avenging there Leinster final defeat. In the third round they travelled to take on reigning All Ireland champions Cork and came out the wrong end of a 3-14 to 1-05 defeat. They bounced back brilliantly with a 1-16 to 1-10 victory over Limerick to get there campaign back on track. They finished the campaign with a good victory over Waterford 2-17 to 0-13 points to set up Saturday’s showdown.

The last time the sides met was in the Leinster final last season where Kilkenny emerged victorious on a 2-11 to 1-09 score line. Offaly are a team making great strides in senior camogie as there placing in the All Ireland series has proven. They have some very talented players among their ranks with Michaela Morkan, Linda Sullivan and Mairead Jennings all showing terrific form in front of goal for the Faithful county and are sure to keep the Kilkenny defence on their toes. Kilkenny similarly have a very potent forward division with Ann Dalton, Denise Gaule, Katie Power, Michelle Quilty and Julieann Malone all capable of causing trouble for the Offaly defence.

This game has all the hallmarks of a classic encounter with both sides showing impressive form in the group stages. This game could boil down to which defence can keep the opposition forward line quiet. I feel Kilkenny will just prove that bit too strong for Offaly on Saturday but I expect a titanic tussle.

Sunday 24th July 2016 

All Ireland U16A Camogie Championship Group 1

Kilkenny vs Clare
Venue: John Lockes Park, Callan 2.30pm Referee: Cathal Egan (Cork)

The Kilkenny under 16 camogie team will hope to make it four wins from four and top the group table when they entertain Clare in John Lockes Park in Callan on Sunday.  Kilkenny have almost certainly guaranteed a semi-final spot after a good victory over Dublin 0-10 points to 0-03 on Sunday last. The only way Kilkenny can be denied a semi-final spot is if Clare defeat Kilkenny by more than twenty-five points.

Sunday opponents Clare are having a good league campaign. In the opening match they edged Waterford in a thrilling high scoring contest 4-13 to 4-11. In their second game Dublin proved too strong on a 1-14 to 1-08 score line. Clare bounced back brilliantly from this loss to defeat Limerick 3-18 to 2-05 on Sunday last. For Clare to progress through to the semi-finals they need to defeat Kilkenny. They are nine points behind Dublin on score difference and twenty-five points behind Kilkenny.

Both sides have a lot to play for in this contest as outlined above. The last time the teams met was in the All Ireland series last season, where the Banner county edged Kilkenny 0-08 points to 0-05. Clare will provide a tough test for Kilkenny on Sunday and are a team that are putting up some high score in recent games, 8-39 in the previous three games. In saying this I feel Kilkenny are progressing very well and would have learned a lot from last weekend’s game and I feel will prove that bit too strong for Clare on Sunday.


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