Another outstanding achievement by the Belgium Ladies Football team as they continue their great success by winning the All Ireland Club Junior Championship Preliminary round against Hugh O’Neills. For the first time since 2014, Belgium GAA will now be competing in the All Ireland Junior Club Quarter Final against the Ulster champions, Castleblayney Faughs (Monaghan).
Belgium made the trip over to Leeds on Saturday 05 November 2022 to play the British Junior Champions, Hugh O’Neills. One of the toughest encounters of the season was on the cards for the Belgium Women as they aimed to book their place in the All Ireland Quarter final. Within the first 30 seconds, Hugh O’Neills got a score on the board to go a point up but Belgium had a great response as Jade Tenwick put the ball in the back of the net. The goal settled Belgium and Ana Rios ran down the wing to score a well-taken point soon after. In the 8th minute, Florina Tobon Escobar does what she does best by intercepting the ball and laying it off to Clara Lambert who does what she does best by sticking the ball in the top right corner and making the score 2:01 – 0:01. Aimée McGrath collected a ball off the post and slotted it over to make it 2:02 – 0:01 after 12 minutes. The Belgium defence were running a tight ship, but Hugh O’Neills found a purple patch for the last 15 minutes of the 1st half by scoring 4 points in a row. The whistle blew for half time and Belgium were still in the lead by 3 points with a score of 2:02 – 0:05.
The Belgium women knew they were in a battle at half time and that they would have to dig deep to win this game out. Belgium started the 2nd half with Clara Lambert winning and scoring a free to make it 2:03 – 0:05. Hugh O’Neills responded with a point a minute later to show they weren’t going anywhere. There was no goal-line technology in Leeds as a Clara Lambert free came off the crossbar and was cleared off the line which would have sealed the game for Belgium. But that gave the women a lift as Aimée McGrath added another point to her tally after 42 minutes making it 2:04 – 0:06. Hugh O’Neills got a point back and closed the gap to 3 points with ten minutes to go. The fitness of the Belgium Women showed as Margaux Mansanarez came up from wing back to get a point and make it 2:05 – 0:07 in the 56th minute. Marla Candon was fouled running in on goal and was awarded a free which Jennifer Moore slotted over to give a 5 point lead. Hugh O’Neills gave a final push but only managed to get one more point on the board resulting in a final score of 2:06 – 0:08.
This is an incredible achievement by the Ladies’ Team which will see them play the Ulster Junior Champions, Castleblayney Faughs on November 19/20.
A special shout-out to Hugh O’Neills who have been a great host to our ladies football team. They really have gone the extra mile this weekend! Go raibh míle maith agat.
The location is to be confirmed but wherever the venue is, we’ll be cheering them on! #BelgiumAbú
Belgium GAA Scorers: Clara Lambert 1-1; Jade Tenwick 1-0; Aimée McGrath 0-2; Ana Rios 0-1; Margaux Mansanarez 0-1; Jennifer Moore 0-1.
Belgium GAA: Elena Postantzi (Greece); Danielle Brady (Cavan); Aisling Fenton (Kerry); Lola Woydt (Belgium); Áine Charlton (Mayo); Rachel Corcoran (Roscommon); Margaux Mansanarez (France); Jennifer Moore (Kildare); Florina Tobon Escobar (Belgium); Orla Butler (Meath); Aimée McGrath (Kildare); Jade Tenwick (South Africa); Ana Rios (Spain); Clara Lambert (Denmark); Marla Candon (c) (Roscommon); | Ruth O’Laoide Kelly (Kerry); Annie-Rose Deegan (Laois); Sonja Beekman (Australia); Malin Thor (Sweden)
Manager: Cosmos Gilmore (Galway)