Match Report : Celbridge U13's Girls GAA VS Ballyna U13's Girls GAA Football

Celbridge U13's Girls GAA VS Ballyna U13's Girls GAA Football

League Division 6a (Week 2)

Saturday 3rd September 2016 @2pm

The Day was set to be a tough one for the the Celbridge U13's girls. As the team was missing two out of the three starting midfielders, one left half back and their two goalkeepers. It was also made even tougher in the fact that, it was raining all morning and the forecast showed no let up on the rain for the afternoon match.

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So tough decisions would need to be made from the two Celbridge coaches (Brendan & Sean) on the layout for the starting team. Ballyna U13's girls team, on the other hand, were well prepared/ready for their away encounter against Celbridge, missing only two of their starting team and having won against an older Celbridge team in the past, this gave them even more confidence going into this match.

The GAA referee was another well experienced ref and explained to both teams the rules and what he expected from both teams. He also explained the dangers in playing in the rain on a wet pitch/surface to the girls.

The Celbridge managers decided to take their centre forward from last week and put her into midfielder role, as she showed great speed in the last weeks match, even scoring a goal, as speed would be needed for this match, along side our existing remaining midfielder, who would be a key player for this game. Moving last weeks left full forward and twice goal scorer last week, into the centre full forward position. Moving a defender from Subs into goal for yhis first half as a trial, due to missing all of our standard goalkeepers. Thankfully there would be no change to the 3x fullbacks in defence, one of them being a strong captain of the team. But! Changes would need to be made in the half backline and half forward line, so all Subs would be trialled for this match in these roles. As the girls all knew what needed to be done, in order to win, no matter what role they needed to play.

The game kicked off and it was very slippy for all the girls in the rain from start to finish, with a number of shots being put wide from both teams. The score remaining 0-0 for both sides for the first eight minutes, however! Ballyna were awarded a free kick in the Celbridge half on the 9th minute and scored a deflected goal which stunned the home team and home crowd. The Celbridge left back scored a fantastic point from play on the eleventh minute, just passed the halfway line. The excitement was quickly wiped way on the thirteenth minute, when the away team (Ballyna) scored a point from a free kick. However! A fantastic dropped ball in from the Celbridge midfielder was then caught beautifully by the centre full forward; who ran by three defenders and scored a top corner goal! It was game on at this stage and the crowd loved it. The Celbridge midfielders had a major battle on their hands, But! Were playing fantastically. Another free kick for Ballyna just before half time gave Ballyna another point before the whistle. Half Time: Celbridge 1-1, Ballyna 1-2.

Changes were made in the Celbridge goal,  half backline and to the half forwards for the second half and of course! Some words of advice & encouragement were given to the girls by the managers. At the start of the second half, Celbridge scored another fantastic point from play by the team captain and the sides were level for the first time on the twenty seventh minute. But yet again! This was short lived and Ballyna scored another goal from a free on the twenty nineteenth minute which had the away fans chanting and singing with joy. But the Celbridge girls stuck to the plan and scored another fantastic point by the midfielder from play on the thirty second minute, this was followed by another point from the other acting midfielder who was playing excellently and now there was only one point between the two teams with eight minutes to go. Everyone of the Subs made by Celbridge contributed excellently over the game. Now Ballyna pushed everyone back to defend and it was a real battle for the Celbridge forwards and midfielders, as they were swarms around them. There was a shot cleared off the Celbridge goal line and the Ballyna goal line over a space of three minutes which has all the crowds forgetting the rain and just enjoying the game. But a wonderful free kick from outside the box from the Celbridge midfielder, having already scoring a point earlier, went straight into the Ballyna goal ! Putting Celbridge two points in front for the first time in the match, with just four minutes left, the Celbridge centre forward had another shot saved off the goal line and was then badly fouled by two Ballyna midfielders on the last minute of the game, who were warned by the Referee over the foul. The Celbridge forward took her free kick and dropped it into the right Celbridge forwards hands, but this goal was stopped by Ballyna and the final whistle was called!

An epic battle from the two sides, it felt like an All Ireland Final at times and had all of the characteristics of the Dublin Vs Kerry Mens GAA football semi-final the previous weekend.

Needless to say, both Celbridge managers (Brendan & Sean) were super proud of Celbridge Girls, they played their hearts out and played like a real team! Also! credit to Ballyna for an excellent game.inal Score: Celbridge 2-4, Ballyna 2-2

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