Northside rivals square off in the Go Ahead Dublin Senior 1 Camogie Championship Final this Friday Night
St. Vincents v Na Fianna
Friday, September 30th. 7:30pm
Parnell Park, Dublin
This Friday Parnell Park will host the culmination of eight weeks of Camogie at the elite level in Dublin. A showcase that has grown in popularity over the years, the Dublin Senior 1 Camogie Championship Final will take centre stage under the lights at Dublin GAA’s Headquarters with new champions to be crowned.
Somewhat a Camogie constant over the last number of years, St. Vincents will once again go in search of the Maura Brady Cup, which they relinquished to Naomh Jude a year ago. Their opponents Na Fianna have not featured in a Senior 1 Final for a while. But they showed their intent dispensing outgoing Champions Judes in the last four to take their place in the 2022 decider.
With as many as six sides clearly in contention this year, there were plenty of permutations when transferring from round robin to the eventual knockouts. Few would have been surprised with last year’s finalists Vincents and Judes emerging from Group A. The Marino outfit reigned supreme in pole position taking away three straight wins. Judes certainly ran them close for that top spot but ultimately a tied game with Lucan Sarsfields in the opening round made the final round encounter with Vincents the crucial tie. With four scores seperating the sides and Lucan drawing their final with St. Oliver Plunkett Eoghan Ruadh, it saw Judes hold that runner up position to advance to the last four with Vincents.
Things weren’t as cut and dry in Group B and there would have been plenty of scratched heads and broken pencil tips at the fixtures meeting to draw a conclusion. Newcomers Castleknock, who only secured Senior 1 status a year ago were sitting pretty at the top of the group with one game to go. Ballyboden St. Endas and Na Fianna shared the second slot. There was always the chance of three teams finishing level on points, and that’s how it played out. Sadly for the Senior 2 Champions, based on head to head and points difference they had to settle for third place in their first year as a Senior 1 team. Na Fianna took their place on top giving them a semi-final draw against Judes with Ballyboden tasked with facing Vincents.
Enthralling Semi Finals finish path to the Final
Two enthralling battles ensued in the last four. With only 0-07 registered in the opening half between St. Vincents and Ballyboden, the latter had the ground to make up with Vincents leading by 0-06 to 0-01 at the break. Trailing by only four scores with 12 minutes remaining, their cause wasn’t helped when Niamh Hetherton blasted home a goal putting Vincents 7 clear going down the home stretch. They finished the game with Ash Maher and Hedgo sharing scores leaving the final score at 1-10 to 0-05 in St. Vincents Favour.
Na Fianna may have been underdogs ahead of their semi-final with reigning champs Naomh Jude and perhaps used that in their favour to lay down their marker. Taking a 5 point lead into the half time break, the Mobhi Road residents kept Judes at bay for large parts of the second session. Judes used all their Senior 1 Championship experience to attempt to close the gap and fight back for a final slot, but a deserving Na Fianna doubled down to take the remaining spot in the Championship Final on a 0-16 to 0-13 scoreline.
The scene has been set for this final showdown. A massive crowd is expected at Parnell Park to celebrate a huge night for Dublin Camogie. And knowing new Champions will be crowned makes the occasion all the sweeter. A fitting end to an incredible Camogie championship season.