Dicksboro’s Lucinda Gahan: “It’s just amazing to bring this cup home” as Boro end Kilkenny camogie drought
The 2020 All-Ireland winning captain with Kilkenny got another taste of glory on Sunday with Dicksboro claiming the 2023 All-Ireland camogie club senior championship witih a hard-fought win over Sarsfields.
Lucinda Gahan is a role model for many. While there are thankfully far more examples of motherhood not having to end a woman’s sporting career, even at the highest level, another one will never go astray, writes Daragh Ó Conchúir.
That Gahan gave birth to Elijah only seven months ago also speaks to her dedication, particularly given how prominent she was for the 19 minutes she was on the pitch during Sunday’s thrilling All-Ireland final victory over defending champions Sarsfields of Galway. Take into account that she broke her hand after returning, Kilkenny’s 2020 All-Ireland-winning captain really is a monument to good conditioning and bloody-mindedness.
Gahan was probably thinking about all that as her eyes welled up, having been greeted with countless hugs and collected her god-daughter and niece Aria on the way down from the Hogan Stand steps from which she had once received the O’Duffy Cup, after Jenny Clifford had been presented on this occasion with the O’Carroll Cup.
She is a role model to her niece too, already a promising player with Mullinavat. Certainly, Aria must have glowed with pride as her aunt won so much possession, and in particular, the moment right on the hour, when Gahan showed phenomenal strength to win possession and draw a foul for a free that was slotted brilliantly by the outstanding Aoife Prendergast – Kilkenny’s last All-Ireland-winning skipper in 2022 – felt huge, as the margin opened to three.
The ‘Boro had actually fallen behind in the first half when Siobhán McGrath goaled in the 25th minute against the run of play but points from Asha McHardy and Orla Hanrick gave them a 0-10 to 1-6 half-time lead that was the least they deserved.
Sarsfields, chasing a third consecutive triumph, were much improved after the restart and looked to be on their way as McGrath, Shannon Corcoran and Sarah Spellman hit four of the next five points.
But with Prendergast and Amy Clifford excelling, Dicksboro found another level to come out on top as worthy victors from a belting contest.
“I’m just ecstatic,” said an exultant Gahan. “It’s amazing. They’re just an amazing bunch of girls. We fought to the end. It was such a hard game and they’re a really tough team but it’s just amazing to bring this cup home back to Dicksboro.
“I was always coming back but then I broke my hand in a challenge match so it put me out for a while and I thought I was definitely gone. Then Donal persuaded me to come back running. Then I got a hurl in my hand and felt fine and I was back in it then!
“I was just gonna give it my best when I came on. It’s such a hard team to get on and it makes everyone so competitive. I was just so grateful to have the chance to get on there today and give it my all.
“We have such a massive panel. When I joined four or five years ago, we didn’t have that many girls. Every year we gained experience. We’ve matured. We’ve learned from our losses and wins. We’ve such a great management team. They’ve put in great commitment all year and this is just unbelievable.”
Listen back to the game in full below and get all the reaction in the final instalment of the Camán Caint podcast this Tuesday.