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Tipp’s Cáit Devane issues rallying call ahead of quarter final

Thursday, 2 August 2018

Tipp’s Cáit Devane issues rallying call ahead of quarter final thumbnailTipperaryís Mary Ryan in action when Tipp and Waterford last met in the Munster semi-final last year. Pic: Rose Mannion. MT3196RM

Tipperary take on Waterford in the All Ireland Quarter final on Saturday next August 4 at 5.30pm in the first match of the double header in Páirc Ui Chaoimh, Cork, while the second game at 7.15pm sees Dublin play Galway.
The winners of these ties will go into the semi-finals with the draw taking place immediately after the second match where Cork and Kilkenny lie in wait to face them in Semple Stadium on Saturday August 18.
Tipperary have been here before, in fact on three consecutive occasions, 2015, 2016 and last year but were unable to progress beyond that. They have also lived dangerously throughout this campaign. Apart from a 6-14 to 0-9 opening round win over Meath, their second round win over Wexford was tight 1-14 to 2-8. Cork had a double score win 1-27 to 1-12 before Tipp beat Offaly by the minimum 1-14 to 2-10. Then came the all important draw with Dublin on 0-13 apiece that gave them second place in group 2 by virtue of score difference.
June player of the month and the highest scorer throughout the championship Cáit Devane is carrying a knee injury and Jean Kelly is gone for the remainder of the season after she broke her collar bone during the Offaly outing. However, Tipp have well established defenders like workhorse Mary Ryan in centre back, while behind her is Gemma Grace. Laura Loughnane has established her mark at midfield and Orla O'Dwyer at wing forward has proved to be a handful too. Three more young forwards, Roisin Cahill, Grace O'Brien and Casey Hennessy are doing well for their first season. However, all eyes will be on Devane who leads the attack from her centre forward position.
The Clonoulty/Rossmore star player would have preferred their campaign to have worked out differently for them. "Obviously, it would have been nice to have a little more to spare against both Wexford and Offaly but thankfully we have been able to get the late scores in each to get us the results we needed. The ability to get late scores is testament the never say die attitude and spirit that has developed within the group. If it takes another late goal to win by a point on Saturday I'll be only too happy with that," she said.
Tipp played Waterford twice last season, recording good wins on both occasions, and while Devane is hoping for the same outcome, she is also cautious knowing how much the Deise have improved and so is taking nothing for granted and says that past victories count for nothing.
“Like ourselves, Waterford have a young team who have been developing year on year. They are a serious outfit and have gotten some impressive results over both Limerick and Clare to get to the quarter final so we are by no means underestimating the size of the task ahead of us on Saturday. They have many really skilful players throughout their team, their defence is well mashalled by their captain Shauna Kiernan and up front they have the likes of Niamh Rockett and Beth Carton who can do real damage, Beth, in particular, has been putting up some impressive scoring numbers this year notching 1-9 of their 1-11 tally the last day out against Clare.
So they have threats all over the field, they have a really solid team and their strength to date in the championship has been in their collective performance. We will need to be on the very top of our game to come out on the right side of the result on Saturday, which hopefully we will be.
And to help them over the line, the centre/full forward is rallying the fans to travel to Cork for this all important outing. "I'd just like to take the opportunity to thank our fantastic supporters and sponsors for their continued support, in particular our anchor sponsor Tipp FM who are doing great work to promote camogie within the county. It would be great to have a big Tipp following in Pairc Ui Chaoimh on Saturday to hopefully roar us into an All-Ireland semi," she said.
The Deise girls are in their very first ever knockout match after a breathtaking campaign which saw them collect their first ever victories at Senior Championship level.
They are the surprise and the success story of this campaign with Beth Carton at full forward their star player.
There is absolutely no doubt that they will want to progress like their opponents. Their captain Shauna Kiernan says that they will "go again hell for leather and fight for every single ball".
An excellent League campaign, in which they lost just once and only missed out on a semi-final spot on score difference, indicated that they are moving in the right direction. "People forget that we've only been in senior three years and we are finally getting the rewards for perseverance since making the step up," she adds.
Aine Lyng, Lorraine Bray, Niamh Rockett, Kaiesha Tobin, Orla Hickey, Beth Carton and captain Shauna Kiernan are just some of their star players.
Speaking about the championship, Kiernan says that in all their games they fought for the ball, they wanted to win and they were not going away without a win.
“It shows how hungry we were for this Championship and how much we improved with every single game. It also shows how much we worked for it throughout the year. This is going back before Christmas when we started training. All those early Sunday morning trainings, late Friday night trainings, gym work, all that - it shows how much it means to girls when you get the win. We were devastated after the Galway game because we didn't show our potential as a team. And after Kilkenny, people started talking about us. They were like 'they had a good game against Kilkenny, this team is on the up and up'. We're building for the future, this is our third year senior and we're looking for more and more wins 'cos we're a hungry team and we're a young team," she said.

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