Compiled by Daragh Ó Conchúir
KILKENNY and Kildare joined Cork in the last four of the Liberty Insurance All-Ireland Intermediate Camogie Championship but Antrim and Laois must wait until the latter’s clash with the Cats before the final berth is decided.
The Kilkenny-Laois game was postponed and with Antrim edging Tipperary in a cracking tie at The Ragg by 2-19 to 3-12, they are now level with the O’Moores on points but have an inferior score difference of 18 points.
That means that Laois can afford to lose by less than 17 points to advance, while they would need a 20-point win to give them the top seeding from Group 1 ahead of the Noresiders.
Racquel McCarry, Caitrin Dobbin and Aisling McFadden inflicted the damage for Antrim, scoring eight points, five points and a goal and four points respectively to keep the Ulster girls’ noses in front, while Emma McMullan also raised a green flag.
Tipperary more than contributed their share in a pulsating affair. Sinead Meagher pounced for two goals and a point, while Aoife McLoughney contributed a goal and four points but although Kealy Lenihan weighed in with three points, it was Antrim’s greater overall scoring power that earned the victory.
In Group 2, Down awarded a walkover to Cork, who had already assured themselves of a semi-final spot.
The big game here was the clash between old rivals Meath and Kildare in Clane to decide who would join the Rebels in the penultimate stages.
And although they had a penalty saved very early on by Emily Mangan, it was the hosts that exerted themselves in the first half and maintained the upper hand right the way through to take the spoils by 2-15 to 2-9.
This was despite failing to contain the ever-dangerous Jane Dolan but the problem for Meath was that they could not provide even a modicum of support to their talisman, who finished with a personal tally of two goals and eight points.
Kildare were a much more rounded unit and while Susie O’Carroll lofted eight points and Siobhán Hurley a goal and four points, last year’s finalists had other contributors to the scoring cause, as well as in general play.
The All Whites led by 1-9 to 0-5 at half time, the goal coming from Noelle Earley, but Dolan single-handedly dragged Meath back into it and the Royals got back to within a point entering the closing stages.
They didn’t score again though. Instead, Hurley took all the air out of the comeback with her goal and a couple more points cemented the last four spot, most likely against Kilkenny.