Judes defender Guckian gives his views on their Senior Final Opponents and Judes chances in the decider

Chris Guckian - St. Judes

If the football championship ended a couple of weeks ago, you be hard pushed to deny the smiles across the faces of every St. Judes player and indeed fan. And after a monumental weekend for two of Judes Camogie sides, both lifting county championships, the focus returns to the senior footballers. And Bank Holiday Monday is gearing up to be a massive clash with Kilmacud Crokes.

Not content with dispensing of last year’s finalists Ballymun Kickhams in the Quarter Finals, the Tymon Park boys went one better and dethroned the reigning champions St. Vincents in the Championship Semi Finals two weeks ago.

So to reach a final, only their second in their history, while being on what most would have believed was the toughest side of the draw, is just the tonic Judes might use to power through next weeks final. Beaten finalists to Ballyboden St. Enda’s in 2009 has now become a very distant memory, and on this year’s form, you wouldn’t rule them out of finishing the job.

Judes defender Chris Guckian is both relieved and delighted his team have shaken the monkey off their back. Semi finalists from 2012, 13, 14, 16 and 17. It’s been a very heartbreaking run.

“It was great to just get over the line and get that monkey off our backs. Obviously there is a bigger challenge ahead.” Chris admits.

Crokes are the in form team

And there’s no denying that. In Kilmacud there’s a very strong line up, who have been gelling together for many years now. County Champions in 2010 beating Ballyboden St. Endas. Finalists in 2012, but beaten by Ballymun. And like Judes, were Semi Finalists last year, but beaten by Ballymun. So last year’s beaten semi finalists are in fact this year’s finalists.

“Last year we felt we were thereabouts. We knew it would take a good team to beat us.”

“I think last year was more us beating ourselves than Vincent’s beating us. Obviously with the men sent off, it’s easy to say that. We learnt a lot from last year in terms of our discipline.”

“To reach this final finally is breaking through the glass ceiling for us.”

The Judes man believes they are very confident, but would be foolish to underestimate their opponents on Monday, who are still on course to capture the senior hurling and football double.

“Crokes have been the form team this year. We played them in a friendly in March and they blew us away.” Guckian added.

“They have a lot of young lads – fit, hungry, different management, different style, very good attacking play. So it’s going to be a totally different game to Vincent’s, more of an experienced outfit.”