Sarsfields captain Mags McEvoy admits that holders Foxrock-Cabinteely will prove difficult to stop in Sunday’s Leinster Ladies Senior Club Football Final (Kinnegad, 2.30pm).
Fox-Cab, with a host of Dublin’s TG4 All-Ireland Senior winners in their ranks, are aiming for a fourth successive provincial crown, with Laois outfit Sarsfields targeting their first Leinster title since 2014.
Three years ago, Sarsfields lost out by five points to Fox-Cab in the Leinster Final and their most recent meeting in the province was at the quarter-final stage last year, when the Dubliners won by the same margin.
But McEvoy (31), who also captained the Laois county team in 2018, is targeting victory against the holders, insisting that it’s “not good enough being there, we want to compete and come out winners.”
The vastly-experienced centre-back said: “We’ve played against these girls for a number of years, we know what we’re up against.
“We respect them but (for us) it’s not good enough being there, we want to compete and come out winners.
“We’re going to do whatever we can to get that win, and you have to back yourself in these situations.
“They’re a high-calibre team but we have to be positive and absolutely compete at the very best that we can.”
Fox-Cab may be able to call upon high-profile stars such as Sinead Goldrick, Niamh Collins, Amy Connolly and Amy Ring but Sars are a rock-solid outfit in their own right, and with a number of survivors from that last Leinster win in 2014.
Jenny McEvoy, Alison McEvoy (Jenny’s younger sister), Ciara Burke (who will be fit to play), Meaghan Dunne, Clare Conlon and Ciara Hughes were all TG4 Leinster Intermediate championship winners with the county this year, along with skipper Mags.
The above mentioned bring a mixture of youth and experience while Laura-Marie Maher, a talented forward, unfortunately sustained cruciate knee ligament damage in April.
Mags McEvoy says: “I’ve played centre back for quite a few years but it’s not me pulling the strings – it’s definitely the girls surrounding me, like Jenny Mac and Alison in the full-back line and on the wing.
“It’s great to have the support that I do. I do shout quite a bit but it’s quite important to be organised against a team like Fox-Cab, because the lines they run are very strong.
“It’s important that we’re organised and we’ve worked on that. Probably the advantage that we have over Fox-Cab is that they have girls that have come in (from outside the club) but we grew up together and have played for 15 or 16 years together.
“We know what we need to do and that’s to be tight as a defensive set-up. Hopefully that’s one slight advantage that we do have over them.”
But while McEvoy is quietly confident of gaining a positive result, and marching into the All-Ireland semi-finals, she recognises the quality that Fox-Cab possess.
“Absolutely, and rightfully so that there’s a lot of talk about them because they are a great side.
“Some of them have come off the back of a fabulous All-Ireland series with Dublin and success breeds success.
“We have to have a lot of respect, which we do, for Fox-Cab as we’ve seen them in previous years.
“They do tend to go at teams, hell for leather from the first whistle and they’re very agile, and work as a team.
“They are by all means going to be a very hard team to beat but that’s the challenge and that’s what builds it up to be a very good Leinster Final, to pit yourself against the best and please God we can compete and have a good game.”
By Jackie Cahill