Sarsfields camp left to rue below-par display against new camogie force Dicksboro

By Eanna O’Reilly

SARSFIELDS manager Michael ‘Hopper’ McGrath was naturally disappointed, after his side’s bid for three All-Ireland titles in a row came up short at Croke Park on Sunday evening. The team boss conceded that his side struggled in the last 15 minutes of the game, when Dicksboro had a purple patch, outscoring his side by 0-7 to 0-1.

‘‘It’s very disappointing to come up here and lose, but look, our girls gave it everything today,’’ he said. ‘‘We got on top early in the second half; we went two points up and probably should have been further ahead. They [Dicksboro] took over then, and we really found it hard to get a grip of the game.’’

McGrath felt that the Kilkenny side really showed their quality at that stage of the contest when the final was in the melting pot. He wasn’t at all surprised that Dicksboro were capable of eclipsing his side, who were under par on the day.

‘‘We found it really hard at that stage to get a foothold in the game. We couldn’t manage to get a supply of ball into our forwards, so it was difficult. But look, that’s just the way it goes sometimes. Dicksboro are an excellent team, they have no weak links whatsoever. We knew they would be very strong, and they showed that today.’’

The Sarsfields boss paid tribute to the achievements of his players, who have delivered three All-Ireland titles during the last four seasons. Despite the defeat, he believed that it wasn’t the end of the road for his squad, and that they were capable of coming back stronger after this loss.

‘‘Look, it’s never easy to get to this stage. We have won three All-Irelands, which is a consolation for us tonight. We have a great group of players; we’ve got knocks before and you just have to take them and come back as best as you can,’’ he concluded.

Midfielder Clodagh McGrath said that this defeat was particularly gut wrenching for her side, given that they didn’t reach the heights of previous All-Ireland Final performances on Sunday in Croke Park.

‘‘We’re devastated in there in the dressing room now. It’s a horrendous feeling to lose an All-Ireland final. They [Dicksboro] are a brilliant team; but I really felt that we didn’t do ourselves justice today. We’d be disappointed with our work rate at times. You just don’t win All-Irelands if you’re not getting nine or ten out of ten in terms of work rate.’’

Pictured: Sarsfields’ Orlaith McGrath tries to fend off the challenge of Dicksboro Ciara Phelan during the All-Ireland Club Senior Camogie Final at Croke Park on Sunday evening. Photo: INPHO/Laszlo Geczo.

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