Ladies football: West Cork are gunning for a place in the semi-final

Ladies football: West Cork are gunning for a place in the semi-final
West Cork's Libby Coppinger shoots from Eimear Meaney at Mourneabbbey. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

A PLACE in the Cork ladies senior football semi-final is at stake on Tuesday night as West Cork take on Éire Óg at St Colum's at 7.30pm.

While it's not a do-or-die game the winners will have the easier potential path to the final, with the losers heading for a quarter-final.

Reigning champions, Mourneabbey, are already in the semi-final and the winners tonight will avoid them, so another added incentive to win.

Not that either side needs any added incentives as both will be eager to get there and potentially then the final.

In a slight twist of fate, this tie to reach the semi-final is actually a repeat of last year's semi-final, which West Cork won.

With home advantage, and by home I mean the game is in west Cork, the divisional side will be favourites to take the points and move straight into the semis.

In their opening group game they were outstanding against Mourneabbey and were a little unlucky not to win in a tie that ended all square. Being the first competitive outing for both sides it was a top-quality game and both will have been happy with the outcome.

West Cork's Emma Spillane looking to get past Mourneabbey's Ciara O'Sullivan during the Cork senior ladies football championship clash. Picture: Eddie O'Hare
West Cork's Emma Spillane looking to get past Mourneabbey's Ciara O'Sullivan during the Cork senior ladies football championship clash. Picture: Eddie O'Hare

West Cork will have learnt a lot from that encounter and will look back knowing they had a number of last chances to win it and no doubt they are ones they will want to put away this time.

Between the ban on collective training and players in action with their clubs it has been difficult for them to get together and their clash with Mourneabbey will have brought them on and they should be even better tonight.

Considering the talent they have available it is no great surprise they are hoping to reach their third final in a row and aiming to go one better and lift the cup this year.

When you look at the wealth of talent they have available to them they must now be considered the favourites to lift the title this year.

Cork keeper Martina O'Brien is rock solid in goal in front of her Sarah Hayes in amongst the best full-backs in the county.

Their half-back line has Melissa Duggan and Emma Spillane, on either side of Clare O'Shea and you won't get any stronger than that.

Siobhan Courtney and Eve Murphy are a new combination in the middle of the park and they can be very happy with their showing the last day out.

Up front you have the likes of Libby Coppinger, Fiona Keating, Daire Kiely and Aine Terry O'Sullivan to give you some idea of what Éire Óg are up against tonight. You can also add in Eimear Kiely to that list as she returns from injury.

But Éire Óg have plenty of quality in their own side and for much of their clash with Mourneabbey, they matched the reigning champions.

It was in the last 15 minutes or so that they pulled away to win, but again like West Cork, Éire Óg will have learned a lot from this tie.

In Laura and Emma Cleary they have two of the best forwards in the county, with others like Shauna Cronin also adding to their forward line.

Unfortunately for them they will be without Eimear Scally for the season as she has opted to take a break from the game for this season.

Not only will she be a loss to them but also to Cork going forward.

Add in Meabh Cahalane, Lisa Crowley and Clodagh O'Connor and West Cork will know they can't afford to take their challenge lightly.

More in this section

Sponsored Content

Add Echolive.ie to your home screen - easy access to Cork news, views, sport and more