Finuge/St Senans v Aghada Munster Junior Final Preview.

Munster Ladies Junior Final 

Finuge/St Senans v Aghada, Saturday 21st October in Mallow @ 12.30 

When Finuge/St Senans manager Johnny Horgan brought his squad back for pre season training last January, little did he think that 10 months later he would be preparing them for a Munster Junior final. Horgan admits that the height of their ambition was to win the Kerry county title and that thoughts of Munster glory was the farthest thing away from their minds. Now they are just 60 minutes away from claiming the Munster championship,but they will be faced with the tough task of lowering the colours of Cork kingpins Aghada, in what is bound to be a stern test of their credentials in Mallow next Saturday. 

Finuge/St Senans claimed the Kerry Junior championship after an impressive 3 point victory over Kilcummin in early September. Although behind by 6 points at half time, they showed resilience and maturity to completely dominate the second half and emerge as champions. In the Munster championship, an early goal against Na Deise of Waterford settled the nerves and gave them the impetus to defeat them on a 4-12 to 1-12 scoreline.Next up were St Bridgets of Limerick and they were firmly put to the sword last Sunday, with Finuge/St Senans winning on a 5-13 to 1-10 scoreline. 

Horgan was particularly happy with the start that his side made that day, and also with the way that they stood up to some intense St Bridgets pressure in the second half.”We got a great start with 3 goals in the first 8 minutes and really that set us on our way. I mean they scored 7 times in the first half and we scored 8 times, but thankfully 4 of those scores were goals. They had a right go at us in the second half and when Niamh Carmody got sin binned it could have been a very tough loss for us. Thankfully the girls dug deep and we actually scored 3 points in that 10 minutes while Niamh was in the bin, The girls stood up when we needed them most” 

Any team that wins a Cork championship comes with a strong pedigree, and Aghada are no different. After a comprehensive 4-14 to 1-5 victory over Naomh Aban in the Cork Junior Championship final,they got a bye to the Munster semi final where they faced Fethard of TipperaryAghada once again posted an impressive 4-14 that day as they hammered the premier champions by 17 points. Johnny Horgan was impressed with what he saw.”They have some fine players. Emma Farmer,Roisin Phelan and Hannah Looney are Cork seniors and Sarah Leahy was very impressive for the Cork minors this year. They will all have to be watched. Still though we have prepared well and I think that we have the players to cause a surprise next Saturday”. 

The Finuge/St Senans players that Horgan is referring to are the likes of Kerry senior panelists Miriam O’Keeffe and Niamh Carmody, Ann Marie Leen, Emma McCarthy, and Kerry camogie stars Patrice Diggins and Jackie Horgan while Niamh Leen, Sara Murphy and Aoife Behanhave had excellent campaigns so far. They are all top performers on their day and certainly have the potential to guide their side to glory, If Finuge /St Senans can get off to a good start once again then they are well capable of bringing the Munster Junior Championship cup to North Kerry. It will be tough though, and holding Emma Farmer, in particular, will be vital to their chances. Finuge/St Senans need to bring all of their fighting spirit and never say die attitude to Mallow next Saturday, They get a hesitant vote to succeed, but don’t be surprised if it’s after extra time.