All Ireland Semi- Final Preview- Piltown vs Clonduff
by PRO on the 30th of January 2015
Piltown vs Clonduff (Down)
Clane Gaa Ground Kildare. 2.30pm
Referee: Peter Dowd
Piltown will be hoping that there dream of claiming there first ever All Ireland Intermediate title lives on Sunday when they face Clonduff of Down in Clane on Sunday.
Piltown are after having a dream year in 2014, claiming the All County league, league and county Championship, and followed this up with by claiming the Leinster title in a thriller over Camross of Laois.
They began their club championship run away to what many expected a strong Birr outfit, but Piltown showed no mercy and recorded an easy 1-11 to 0-04 point victory. They followed this up with tricky assignment away against Myshall of Carlow where in a much tighter contest they recorded a 1-12 to 1-09 victory. This secured them the safe passage through to the Leinster final where they played a highly fancied Camross of Laois. A side that contained many household names such as Olga Parkinson, Sarah – Ann Fitzgearld and Niamh Dollard. In a thriller of a contest where the lead change hands many times, Piltown showed great character to edge out the O’Moore side 3-10 to 4-05.
Throughout their passage to the semi final Piltown showed they are a team unit and work always as a team. Aoife Norris is having a great year between the sticks, the full back line of Katelynn Phelan, Elaine Kenny, Jennifer Norris are rock solid all year, the pacy half back line Mairead Power, Karen Duggan and Kelly Ann Doyle can cause serious trouble when they run at opposition half backs and lay it off to the lethal Piltown Forward line. The midfield paring of Laura Norris and Alice Talbot were outstanding in the Leinster final and will hope this good run will continue on Sunday. The half forward line of Niamh Culleton, Edel Long and Katie Power can terrorise opposition defences and will need the same in what will be a tough encounter on Sunday. The full forward line of Chloe Holden, Georgina Culleton and Chloe Blackmore will cause serious headaches for the Mourne side. The benefit that Piltown have this year is they have a team unity that stretches beyond the 15 players that take the field, they have players that they can call on from the bench that can make a serious impact in the game and in a era where it is expressed that it is no longer a 15 a side game that it is now a 20 a side game where the subs are as important as the starting 15, Piltown are role models for this with the team unity they have and the impact replacements they can call on.
So what about the opposition, Clonduff of Down. Many would consider Sunday’s game would be a one sided contested. But many will forget that Down are reigning Junior All Ireland Champions, and the boost a victory like this can give to a developing county. From the winning county panel they have seven All Ireland winners, Fionnuala Carr, Karen Haughey, Sarah Louise Carr, Lisa McPolin, Paula Gribben, Nicola O’Hangan, and Claire McGilligan. All these players will play a serious part in Sundays contest.
In saying this you have to fancy Piltown having a bit too much pace and experience for the Northern side, but it could be closer than many people think.
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