It’s two years to the day (March 1st) since Sarsfields were crowned All-Ireland senior club camogie champions after Siobhán McGrath’s late goal gave them a one-point win over Slaughtneil.
Michael ‘Hopper’ McGrath’s charges go after the only team to beat them in the last three years, in a repeat of the 2020 final loss to Wexford’s Oulart The Ballagh.
At the AIB #TheToughest Press Day, Sarsfields full back Laura Ward has been chatting to Galway Bay FM’s Darren Kelly
Throw-in on Sunday (6th March) is 4pm and we’ll have live coverage here on Galway Bay FM.
The fate of the remaining eight teams in the 2021/2022 AIB Senior, Intermediate, Junior A and Junior B Camogie Club All-Ireland Championships will be decided this weekend as four thrilling All-Ireland campaigns come to a head, with the Senior and Intermediate deciders getting underway as part of a big double header from 2pm at Croke Park on Sunday, March 6th, while the Junior A and Junior B finals will take place at O’Raghallaighs GAA, Drogheda from 12.30pm on Saturday, March 5th.
The Senior final sees Sarsfields (Galway) take on reigning champions, Oulart the Ballagh (Wexford) once more. The sides will face off in a hugely-anticipated showdown at Croke Park on Sunday, March 6th at 4pm – the second game in a thrilling double header that follows the Intermediate decider at 2pm, where Salthill Knocknacarra (Galway) meet reigning Intermediate champions, St Rynagh’s (Offaly). The Junior A and B finals meanwhile take place on Saturday, March 5th at O’Raghallaighs GAA, Drogheda with the Junior A final seeing Clanmaurice (Kerry) meet Eoghan Rua (Derry) at 12.30pm. The Junior B final meanwhile sees Knockananna of Wicklow taking on Tyrone’s Derrylaughlan at 2.30pm.
This year’s AIB GAA and Camogie Club Championships campaign celebrates #TheToughest players in Gaelic Games, those who, despite logic, can’t quit, but persevere no matter how tough it gets because it’s who they are. For them, it’s about never giving up and never giving in, because Tough Can’t Quit – and this weekend’s games are set to be no exception.
The Senior final is a repeat of last year’s showpiece, with a big clash between reigning champions, Oulart the Ballagh of Wexford and Galway’s Sarsfields. Sarsfields will be on the hunt for revenge, having fallen to Oulart in the 2020/2021 decider before Christmas, losing out 4-8 to 2-9 on the day to the Wexford outfit. The Galway side are no strangers to success though, last claiming the title in the 2019/2020 decider in a memorable victory over Slaughtneil, and they will be hoping to regain their title this weekend. Oulart the Ballagh meanwhile are back in the final following a convincing win over Scariff Ogonnelloe of Clare in the All-Ireland semi-final. They will be hoping to claim back-to-back All-Ireland titles and will be looking to Una Leacy to be on form once more, as she bagged a hat trick of goals against Sarsfields in their last clash.
In the Intermediate decider meanwhile, reigning All-Ireland champions St. Rynagh’s continued their impressive form of late, delivering an exhilarating finish in their semi-final clash with Gailltír of Waterford, with a second-half goal swinging the fixture in their favour by 2-11 to 1-11. Molly Dunne’s charges are now looking for their second consecutive national title, but Salthill Knocknacarra stand in their way. The Galway side are into a maiden Intermediate final, and got the better of Portaferry of Down in Abbotstown in tough conditions in their semi-final, with an impressive Laura Kelly notching 0-9 of her team’s total on the day.
Beaten 2020/2021 Junior A All-Ireland finalists Clanmaurice of Kerry are back in the AIB Junior A Camogie Club All-Ireland Championship once more – having beaten the reigning All-Ireland champions, Raharney (Westmeath) in an extra-time thriller in the semi-final. Now, the Munster champions will be hoping to go all the way, but face a tough challenge in Eoghan Rua of Derry, who came through their semi-final clash with Athleague of Roscommon last weekend on a final scoreline of 1-12 to 0-6.
The AIB Junior B Camogie Club All-Ireland Championship decider will also take this place this Saturday in Drogheda, with Derrylaughan of Tyrone facing off against Wicklow’s Knockananna. The Tyrone outfit came through a battle with Oran of Roscommon in the semi-final, and will now take on the Wicklow and Leinster champions who are in their second All-Ireland final since December. The Wicklow women powered home in their semi-final with a strong 2-15 to 1-2 win over Manchester side Fullen Gaels, and will have another bite of the cherry this weekend after last year’s defeat to Naomh Treasa of Tyrone.
Speaking ahead of Saturday’s senior finals, Head of Public Affairs at AIB, Maolmuire Tynan commented: “The fact that many of the same teams are again involved in this season’s finals speaks volumes of the levels of skill and perseverance of the players and commitment of their coaches. As supporters of the AIB Camogie Club Championships since 2013, AIB has had the pleasure of witnessing the commitment of these players, year after year. I hope the fans of each of the eight clubs involved this weekend enjoy what is a truly special occasion for each of your clubs, and I would like to express our thanks for your continuous support of these Championships. We wish all teams involved the very best of luck.”
Hilda Breslin, President of the Camogie Association, commented: “We are delighted we have reached the finals stages of our AIB All-Ireland Club Championships. It has been a long and tough road for many of these teams, but as the brilliant AIB ad campaign says, Tough Can’t Quit. Our club games showcase the depth of camogie, with all four provinces represented again. I urge all supporters to attend the finals this weekend, show your support for club, county, province and most importantly, for the players.”
The AIB Senior and Intermediate Camogie Club All-Ireland Championship finals will be broadcast live by RTÉ from Croke Park on Sunday, March 6th, with coverage starting on RTÉ 2 from 1.45pm. The Junior A and B games will be streamed live on the Official Camogie YouTube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/user/OfficialCamogie.
Tickets for the Senior and Intermediate double header at Croke Park on Sunday, March 6th are available to purchase here: https://am.ticketmaster.com/gaa/camogiecf22 while tickets for the Junior A and B double header at O’Raghallaighs GAA, Drogheda on Saturday, March 5th are available here: https://www.universe.com/embed2/events/aib-2021-all-ireland-junior-a-b-club-finals-tickets-1L76BS.
For updates, exclusive content and behind the scenes action from the AIB GAA and Camogie Club Championships, follow AIB GAA on Twitter (@AIB_GAA), Instagram (@aib_gaa), and Facebook (@AIBGAA).