Kilkenny go in search of a 2nd National League title in three seasons when they play Galway in Sunday’s Division One Final in Semple Stadium, Thurles.
Kilkenny qualified for the League Final the hard way.
Having record straightforward victories over Derry and Waterford in their opening two league matches, Kilkenny lost to an injury-time point against Cork, which meant victory was essential in their final group game against in-form Limerick.
They made the trip to Bruff a winning one, and the experienced Anne Dalton was the decisive difference scoring 2-2 from play in a 4-point victory.
Kilkenny, Cork and Limerick all finished equal top of the group with 6 points, but Kilkenny went straight through the semi-finals as a result of their superior scoring difference.
Kilkenny’s Semi-Final clash against Tipperary was dogged struggle.
The sides finished level at 0-9 apiece which meant extra-time was required.
A Denise Gaule goal in the first-period of extra-time put them in control, while Julieann Malone scored Kilkenny’s 2nd goal in the 2nd period of extra-time as Kilkenny won out 2-13 to 0-15.
Under the stewardship of Anne Downey, a number of newcomers have been introduced to the squad including Malone.
Kellyann Doyle has impressed greatly in midfield, while Sarah Kent has been a regular at corner-back.
Looking at the subs bench from their semi-final match, there is plenty of experience involved and the likes of Colette Dormer, Aoife Neary, Michelle Quilty, Kate McDonald and Aine Connery all have experience of playing in All-Ireland Finals.
The strength in depth is there and with All-star forward Katie Power still to return from injury, the potential is there to challenge for All-Ireland honours.
A League title on Sunday would be a major boost, but they are under no illusions about the task ahead.
Galway have plenty of experience captained by Niamh Kilkenny, and they have produced the best form in the League defeating Wexford, Tipperary, Clare, Offaly and Dublin before breaking Limerick hearts with a late-injury time point in the other semi-final.
The game is the curtain raiser to the Allianz Hurling League final on Sunday. Throw in is at 1.30 for the Camogie and 3.30 for the hurling. Entry is by ticket only and these can be purchased either onhttp://www.gaa.ie/hurling/ or through any of the Super Valu or Centra ticket offices.