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Dublin: 19 °C Friday 14 August, 2020
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'It's great to be back competing at inter-county level' - Cavan camogie team return after almost a decade

Breffni captain Erinn Galligan is relishing the long-awaited comeback.

Crosserlough's Erinn Galligan captains the team (file pic - 2017 All-Ireland junior club semi-final).
Crosserlough's Erinn Galligan captains the team (file pic - 2017 All-Ireland junior club semi-final).
Image: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

STORM CIARA GOT the better of their original big comeback, but the Cavan camogie side make their return to inter-county action this weekend after almost a decade out.

The Breffni were due to start their new chapter at Breffni Park against Limerick two weeks ago but instead, they do so by going head-to-head with Roscommon this afternoon [throw-in 1pm, Templeport St Aidan's GAA, Cavan].

Understandably, it was disappointing that their return was put on hold by circumstances out of their control, but the entire set-up is raring to go in their highly-anticipated Littlewoods Ireland Camgogie League Division 3 tie.

Westmeath native Jimmy Greville — who’s been involved with 2019 All-Ireland intermediate champions Westmeath under his brother, Johnny, and has managed successful Cavan club outfit Crosserlough — is the man at the helm of the 38-strong panel, with three Lake county selectors also on board.

Erinn Galligan, also of Crosserlough and a dual star who has lined out for the Cavan footballers for many seasons in the past, is captain of the county with nine clubs.

“It’s great to be back competing at inter-county level,” Galligan told The42. “It’s always an honour to represent your county and the standard of camogie players in Cavan is too high to not be competing on a national level.

“As well as that, it gives girls within the county the chance to better themselves by competing at that higher level and improve the standard of club camogie as a result.

jimmy-greville Cavan camogie manager Jimmy Greville. Source: Oisin Keniry/INPHO

“The lads have been very encouraging and positive since November. They have put in place a professional set up which is necessary nowadays at inter-county level and thankfully, every girl has bought into this and are reaping the rewards of their hard work.

“The camogie county board have left no stone unturned in our preparations for the year ahead and deserve massive credit for the enjoyment that each girl has gotten from the county set-up so far.”

With several dual players involved — star forwards Ciara Finnegan and Roisin O’Keeffe are among those also playing for the Cavan footballers this year — Galligan is pleased with the enthusiasm and commitment shown by everyone so far.

And of course, the standard.

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“There is massive competition across the panel which is brilliant to see,” Galligan, who was part of the Cavan 2013 All-Ireland intermediate football championship-winning team, said.

“There will obviously be disappointment among girls who might not get a jersey on Saturday but every girl on this panel has a role to play in the success of the team. On any given day, any member of this panel could represent our team.

“Competition is stiff and each girl knows they need to keep working hard, one to 15, to represent the hard work that has been put in by the entire panel since November and this one to 15 will continuously change such is the competition for places.”

Although, they’re just setting out for competitive action again, their goals are firmly in place:

“The aim for the year would be to win the Nancy Murray competition which would find ourselves competing at the All-Ireland junior quarter-final stage, that’s were we want to be come August time but we will take each league game as it comes to start.

“We’ll take the pros and cons from each game, work on the negatives and approach each game with a new goal to improve upon.

“We’re all looking forward to Saturday, we just can’t wait to take to the field and put our markers down for the year, please God. And we will do everything in our power to try get across the line.”

After the challenge of Roscommon, Cavan travel to Tyrone on 8 March, Wicklow the week after and their final group game is at home to Offaly on 29 March. The rescheduled fixture with Limerick will have to be taken into account too.

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Emma Duffy

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