*Gearoid O’Brien gets away from Jayme O’Sullivan. Photograph: Gerard O’Neill
LINING OUT in the senior championship is the goal for all members of the Kilrush Shamrocks panel and they are sixty minutes away from returning to the top tier.
Kilrush Shamrocks had two goals at the start of the season, to get out of Division 3 in the league and to get back up to senior. They are one step away from realising both aims.
“I remember my Dad bringing me to the games and watching teams with Peadar McMahon and Stephen Sweeney playing for Kilrush and I wanted to be doing what they were doing. I want to play at the highest level with the club and all the players involved in this panel want to do the same”.
So said star forward and the team’s top scorer Gearoid O’Brien this week ahead of the team’s intermediate championship final meeting with Kilmihil.
“The intermediate championship is one of the toughest to win. There are four or five teams there who want to get up to the top grade. The Banner who are building a fine young team have joined that group now. There are tough teams there and it’s getting tougher to win this title”.
In the semi-final Kilrush overcame a fancied Wolfe Tones team. “Because of the bad weather, we went to Meelick at short notice. We fully believed in ourselves, we stuck to our game plan and we never panicked. We have listened to our coaches all year and it has paid off”.
Looking ahead to Saturday’s final Gearoid accepts “Kilmihil are a good team. They have been favourites all season. They have experienced players in Ciaran Downes, David Egan and a few who have been with the county”.
Gearoid believes that Kilrush has “a management team that has great pride in Kilrush. Daniel Ryan, Con O’Brien, Noel Ryan, John Keane and our lucky charm John O’Mahony are all Kilrush clubmen. John O’Mahony was part of the management team when Kilrush last won the title which was in 2018”.
O’Brien believes that Kilrush have a good mix of youth and experience. “We have a lot of young players that are developing. They are used to playing at higher grades”.
Gearoid was part of the team which won this title five years ago along with goalkeeper Stephen Ryan, Ross Phelan, Padraig Browne and Darragh Bolton.