Laois were the stronger outfit – Cully
Speaking in the direct aftermath of Saturday’s All-Ireland premier junior camogie semi-final, Westmeath manager Yvette Cully was understandably disappointed to have ended up on the wrong side of the result, though she did accept that Laois were simply the stronger outfit on the day.
“Yeah, disappointed with the result. Laois were the stronger team, it showed there,” the St Munna’s stalwart said. “There was 11 points in it. In an All-Ireland Semi-Final, you need your full squad. We were down six players from last year’s starting 15.
“Coming here today we needed a full squad against a strong Laois side. They’re a good side. They know what they’re at. They got a bit of a run at us, got a few goals near the end,” Cully remarked.
Although no Westmeath player could be faulted for their endeavours, full-forward Denise McGrath was the star performer for the Lake County, with a final tally of 3-3 to her name.
Cully was full of praise for her role on the day, and always felt that she could do considerable damage with the right supply of possession.
“Denise had a right good game,” she remarked. “I thought if we got more balls into her we would have gotten the scores. I said to them at half-time to try and get the balls in there, and we will get the goals.
“Any time the ball seemed to go into McGrath she did her best and she did get goals in there, but not enough.”
Despite exiting at the penultimate stage of the third-tier competition, there is reason for the Westmeath girls to reflect positively on their performances during the year.
Cully is certainly proud of their achievements in 2013, although she once again lamented the disruptions that were caused by injuries and absentees on the day.
“We came up last year from the league, and we came up a division this year to the Junior Premier. It’s a step up. People had no faith in us, and asked us ‘what are we doing up there?’,” she said.
“Give the girls their due, they stepped up to the mark. They never shied away from it.
“At the end of the day, you need your full squad of 30 girls. We had our injuries, Aoife Higgins is a huge loss. Aisling Conaty came off there into the second half carrying a big injury on her leg.
“Pam (Greville) is away on holidays, and Joanne McCormack is away on holidays. You need your best team out, especially against the likes of Laois in an All-Ireland Semi-Final. That’s the difference.”