Dublin, Cork and Donegal won their respective TG4 Provincial Ladies Football Championships yesterday, striking something of a blow for the old order after Meath and Kerry had risen in both the All Ireland and Lidl National Leagues over the past two seasons.
The results set up a fascinating All Ireland series, the groups for which are now fully confirmed.
Dublin and Kerry will play Cavan in Group C wit Donegal , Meath and Waterford in Group B, Cork, Galway and Tipperary in Group D and Mayo, Armagh and Laois in Group A.
Each group will have back to back games on the weekends of the 17th and 24th June and the 1st July with the top two teams from each qualifying for the knockout Quarter-Finals.
Goals in either half from Kate Sullivan proved decisive as Dublin continued their remarkable run of success in Leinster with a third win in 2023 over Meath.
Sensational goal for Dublin!
See Kate Sullivan finish a superb direct move to the Meath net to retain the @SportTG4 @LeinsterLGFA SFC in Portlaoise.
From Live Stream by @JeromeQuinn & @MQ_Video; @dublinladiesg @OfficialSylsGAA @WeAreDub @DubMatchTracker pic.twitter.com/PZYsiKvxGL
— Ladies Football (@LadiesFootball) May 28, 2023
Sullivan’s opening goal saw the sides turn around level at 1-2 to 0-5 and her second goal ensured Dublin would again lift provincial silverware before the attention now switches to the TG4 All-Ireland series.
In Munster, Cork manager Shane Ronayne was delighted with his side’s performance as they retained their title with a 5-14 to 2-17 win over Kerry.
“Certainly in the first half we were outstanding stuff, both the forward play and the defence as well. To keep Kerry to a limited score we were delighted with that,” said Ronayne.
Cork scored four goals in the opening half to lead by 4-10 to 0-7 at the interval, with two goals from Libby Coppinger and one apiece from Katie Quirke and Ciara O’Sullivan putting them in the driving seat before Kerry hit back after the restart.
Rebels run riot in Mallow with FOUR first half goals against Kerry which ensured @CorkLGFA their 4th successive Senior A @MunsterLGFA title 🏆🏆🏆🏆
Watch the full game On-Demand ➡️ https://t.co/8RTIDVIpju pic.twitter.com/lyhBlaTKhi
— Clubber (@clubber) May 28, 2023
“Look there were a few ropey moments in the second half and I would be very annoyed about the first five minutes of that. But look I thought we finished really strong as well,” added Ronayne.
A Kerry revival which included goals from Hannah O’Donoghue and Fiadhna Tagney gave them hope but Orlaith Cahalane got Cork’s fifth goal and with Kerry missing two penalties, they held on for victory.
And in Ulster, Donegal finished strongly to deny Armagh a fourth title in a row with a goal from Ciara McGarvey sealing a 1-10 to 0-9 win to lift the crown for the first time since 2019.
— BBC SPORT NI (@BBCSPORTNI) May 28, 2023
“It’s definitely the most satisfying and indeed sweetest trophy we’ve picked up,” said Donegal manager Maxi Curran. “We were completely wrote off coming into this. Armagh were 7/1 favourites. They hadn’t lost a game all year.
“We never really doubted the fact that we could win the game. We were greatly enhanced before today by the return of Niamh Hegarty and Tanya Kennedy. They ooze class and quality. And with the young girls, they added that little bit of experience and steel.
“The league, the losses and the relegation; it was demoralising for sure. But for the girls and the group to keep coming back and going at it, they got their reward here today. I’m just so happy that we got over the line for that reason alone.”
2023 TG4 All-Ireland Championship groupings
Group A: Mayo Armagh Laois
Group B: Donegal Meath Waterford
Group C: Dublin Kerry Cavan
Group D: Cork Galway Tipperary
Group A: Kildare Leitrim Louth
Group B: Clare Tyrone Offaly Wicklow
Group C: Roscommon Wexford Monaghan
Group D: Antrim Longford Westmeath
Group A: Sligo, Kilkenny, Limerick, Down
Group B: Derry, Carlow, London, Fermanagh