There is a saying in Sport that “the winner takes it all” and as far as the Cup goes Tullaroan took the trophy home but it was the team which earlier in the week were written off and requiring a miracle if they were to trouble the firm favourites Tullaroan that walked off the pitch with their heads held high as they gallantly tried in vain to win the cup for the first time and this fact was reinforced in the awarding of the lady of the match to Shona Murphy of Newpark AFC.
It was the community club’s team which started the brightest and Tracey Bourke went close after just 5 minutes when her shot went wide of Trish Mullally’s post. Both keepers were in fine form and Jayne Meagher got down well to save a goal bound shot from the dangerous Breda O’Neill after 30 mins. Tullaroan were now on top and just as it looked like it was going to be a scoreless first half Irene Guilfoyle broke through the Newpark’s Defence with the last kick of the first half.
The introduction of Maria Connolly at half time added extra pace and skill to the Newpark midfield as they tried to peck back the one goal deficit and, but for some excellent goal keeping by Mullally as she was quick off her line to deny Denise Doyle and Tracey Bourke the equaliser the Newpark girls desevered as they were roared on by their large banner carrying supporters.
With only 12 minutes remaining it seemed as if Orla McCormack had sealed victory when she slid home to the corner of the net after some great work by Breda O’Neill in the Newpark box. The large crowd now feared that maybe all those pre match predictions of impending doom was about to unfold and this group of ladies were about to collapse. But Anne Dunne and Co were having none of it and within 2 minutes Tracey Bourke had the underdogs back in the game as she got in behind the Tullaroan defence and firing to the net made it 2-1 and still 10 mins on the clock.
With the large crowd now driving the underdogs on it was Mullally once again who came to the rescue to deny Denise Doyle the Equaliser that would send the game to extra time. with only seconds remaining an unfortunate deflection saw the ball end up in the Newpark net through an own goal.
When the final whistle went both teams were given a long lasting round of applause after providing the supporters of both clubs with an excellent entertaining game that shows that even though there can be only one winner of the cup both teams can hold their heads up high and the Ladies final has now set a standard that next weeks Mens final between Evergreen and Freebooters will find hard to match. The winner today was Ladies Soccer.