With so much focus on the lads’ exploits at the minute, what the county’s ladies football team are up to has once more got a bit lost. It’s a recurring issue, both generally and here on the blog, and I feel I’m forever holding my hand up in acknowledgement of the fact that their matches don’t get enough coverage here.
This is undoubtedly the case but, for my part, it’s simply a recognition that there’s simply only so much that a one-man-band can do. Anyway, enough about me, today is about the ladies team and the big match they face.
And a big one it is, as this afternoon they’re up against the all-conquering Cork team with a place in this year’s All-Ireland final at stake. If they manage to get there it’ll mean another Mayo/Dublin final but I’d say there’s precious little talk about such an outcome in the camp today.
Cork are the six-in-a-row champions, having won every LGFA senior All-Ireland title bar 2010 since 2005. That was the first year they won it but the 11 titles they’ve won in the past 12 years means they’re now level with Kerry as the most successful county in the women’s game.
They’re obviously huge favourites to win out today. The ominous form they showed when steamrolling Galway in the quarter-finals demonstrated clearly that their desire for success is far from sated.
The Mayo ladies aren’t, though, without hope. Forced – like their males equivalents – to take the scenic route in this year’s championship, they won their place in today’s tie with a stirring victory over Donegal in the quarters. They’ll need to dig deep once again today if they’re to stay with the Rebels.
Today’s semi-final takes place at Breffni Park in Cavan. It’s also live on TG4 and throw-in is set for 4.45pm today. The curtain-raiser, throwing in at 3pm, is the Intermediate semi-final between Sligo and Tyrone.
It’s a big test for the ladies today but, as they’ve shown repeatedly down the years, they’ve never been found wanting in terms of heart and courage. The very best of luck to them in this one.