Limerick made the most of home advantage to reignite their season.
Limerick kickstarted their 2022 campaign with a hard fought 0-11 to 0-9 win over Offaly in the third round of the All-Ireland Senior Camogie Championship on Saturday in Cappamore.
After suffering relegation at the hands of the Offaly side earlier in the year, Limerick avenged the defeat to move back into the knockout reckoning.
Limerick had been beaten by Galway and Kilkenny but regrouped well to dig out the result.
Speaking to the Camogie Association in the wake of the game, Limerick manager John Lillis was delighted with the “well overdue” result.
“They dug extremely deep. I’m so happy. It’s been a long time coming to try and get a win for this group and to get it today in a home venue is absolutely outstanding. I’m just absolutely over the moon at the moment.
“We’d a number of goalscoring opportunities in the first half – six in total, I think. We didn’t take any of them. Between hitting posts, hitting goalkeepers, that’s just been the story of our season this year. But still, we ploughed on and kept Offaly to two points (0-6 to 0-4) into a very strong wind.
“The subs we brought on made a massive impact. Caoimhe Costelloe putting over points for fun when she got the room, it’s brilliant to see. And the crowd we had from Limerick supporting us, gave us that little extra bit.
“It’s great for us. We’re finally back on the road. We can look forward to Down now in two weeks, knowing we have the win and we can now, some way look at the possibility of a quarter-final.
“We have so many young girls on the team making their senior debuts this year. They wouldn’t have experienced anything like this. Offaly fought from the very start to the very end. Only for Michelle Curtin tracking back so far to get that hook at the end, Offaly would have scored a goal to win it.
“We’re delighted, and it’s well overdue.”
Caoimhe Costelloe was undoubtedly the star of the show as the Adare native hit over all but two of her sides score on the evening.
Those came from both play and placed balls as Offaly couldn’t contain her threat.
She echoed the sentiments of her manager in the wake of the contest;
“I’m delighted we got the win in the end. It was nip and tuck and it could have gone either way in the end. We’re just hugely relieved to get over the line. It’s been a long time coming. We’ve had a tough year of it and to get a win, there’s just no better feeling.
“We’ve had a good few injuries and girls have stepped away for various different reasons but the one thing we have, is we have a very good group of players. There’s 24 togged today and we’ve a few more at home that couldn’t make it. We’re a very, very tight group. We know we have to work hard and it paid off there in the end. We put our bodies on the line. It could have gone any way but I’m just so happy we got our rewards today.
“It’s my job. It’s no different to anybody else on the field. You have to back yourself. Marion, our sports psychologist, has been very good at that. Just take every free as it is. I missed the penalty and you just have to dust yourself down and go to the next one.”
Limerick welcome Down on June 25 with Antrim away in the final round.
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