A massive challenge lies ahead of Scariff/Ogonnelloe this weekend as they face Derry super-club Slaughtneil but an even greater prize is in their path should they overcome the All-Ireland champions.
Jim Minouge has had a memorable year in charge of the East Clare ladies and is hoping to continue their run of impressive form when they travel to Ashbourne on Meath this Sunday. “It’s a great opportunity, everyone is really looking forward to it. The challenge is huge but still it’s a fifty fifty game, Slaughtneill will be going in as the favourites and that’s good for us. We’re looking at it as a great opportunity, it’s another game for us, the prize is huge”.
Dealing with their opponents’ short game has been identified by management as the biggest threat. “Slaughtneill are an exceptional team, they do like to move the ball, that is one of the big things with them, they have some very strong runners, we just have to close them down and get numbers back, to try shut that down, that is definitely one of our main targets”.
“We definitely looked at Slaughtneill, we would have been naive not to. The most focus is on ourselves, we can only play our own game, the big thing from our perspective is workrate, using the ball well and once we bring that to the table the result will take care of itself, I’m sure they’ll be aware of our threats, we just have to see how it goes”.
A secondary school teacher in Galway, Minouge equated the eleven week window between their Munster Final win and Sunday as “a new term”. “We took a break for Christmas for about two weeks, the U21s had a county final after the Munster Final so we weren’t able to take a break then with that on, we took a break around exam time and over Christmas”.
He added, “It was a challenge, we got the approach right. It gave us a good chance to work on a lot of things, in one way it was like starting again and building it back up”.