'We know we're as good as Cork and Kilkenny' - Tipp captain O'Dwyer

Thursday, 18 January 2018

'We know we're as good as Cork and Kilkenny' - Tipp captain O'Dwyer thumbnailTipperary camogie star Orla O'Dwyer at the launch of the National League. MT03300BL

MOST would consider themselves busy enough with one inter-county code, let alone two, but Depeche Mode's 1980's hit 'Just Can't Get Enough' certainly springs to mind when you think of Tipperary dual star Orla O'Dwyer.
As a Leaving Cert student she earned due recognition as the Premier's standout camogie performer last year - later earning their sole All-Star nomination - before helping to guide the Tipp footballers to All-Ireland intermediate football glory in Croke Park.
Not only that, she managed to balance school commitments with a dual inter-county career to achieve her preferred college course of Physical Education and Irish in the University of Limerick. Clearly, the Cashel star is in great demand on many fronts but she has no intention of slowing down in 2018 and displays a refreshing attitude to the challenges she faces.
"I'm playing the two of them again this year. We're up senior now with the football so that'll be a big change and harder games but I think the two of them actually complement each other if anything and I don't think it's much of a challenge balancing them actually," O'Dwyer said at the Littlewoods Ireland Camogie Leagues launch last week.
"I did both of them last year during my Leaving Cert and it was grand. I love the two of them and wouldn't be able to pick between them so I dedicate myself equally to both. I like being busy and knowing what I have to do, I think it's good to have a busy life. I felt like I didn't miss anything and I got the college and course that I wanted so I'm happy."
A last-minute opening round Camogie League defeat to Wexford in the Ragg last Sunday is a setback but the Tipp captain has full faith in new manager Bill Mullaney (Newport), who guided many of the current squad to All-Ireland minor glory two years ago, and she feels that a Premier breakthrough is just around the corner.
"We got to the quarter-final the last two years but watching back on the other teams we know we're as good as the Corks and Kilkennys and we just hope to be a big surprise in League and Championship this year and hopefully get a bit further, maybe a semi-final or even an All-Ireland final," O'Dwyer said.
"We have a new management in and we have a different approach to it now and we need to get out of that comfort zone we were in where we just stayed at the same level and we need to drive on this year.
"We know we're as good as them and it's annoying that we can't get past some stages. Cork and Kilkenny are very experienced, they've lots of players who have been there a while and we just hope we come together as a team and don't play individually.
"I think that would be a big difference, playing collectively and getting to know each other more. It's mainly the same team as last year but there will be a good few new faces coming in which will bring a lot of speed to it.
"As well as that, Sarah Fryday and Karen Kennedy, who both did their cruciates last year, will be back and are huge assets this year. We've a stronger panel this year and hopefully we can drive on a bit further."


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