Mount Anville favourites to triumph
HOCKEY:The Leinster Schoolgirl’s Senior Cup has been dominated by Alexandra College and St Andrews for the last 10 years, Loreto Beaufort the only other school to get its name on the trophy in that spell, but today’s decider at Grange Road (2pm) throws together a brand new pairing, Mount Anville and Rathdown.
Back in 1999 Mount Anville bridged a 25-year-winning gap in the competition when they triumphed over Wesley College, going on to win the All-Ireland title, and they experienced more success three years later, but for Rathdown there’s no such cup pedigree, this their first ever appearance in the final.
And in their first ever semi-final they got the better of High School, Premier League finalists this season, winning on penalty strokes after a 0-0 draw.
While goals had been aplenty for the “newcomers” on their run to the last four, their defence has proven unbeatable along the way, their scoreless draw with High School their fourth successive clean sheet.
Mount Anville advanced to the final in precisely the same manner, their strokes’ win after a 0-0 draw ending Alexandra’s three-in-a-row-seeking hopes, and also ending years of frustration for the school after being repeatedly thwarted at the semi-final stage.
Irish and Leinster under-18 team-mates Sarah Evans (Rathdown) and Sarah Twomey (Mount Anville) will be just two of many gifted players to watch today, Mount Anville favourites given their 3-1 win over Rathdown in the league in December and the fact they finished nine points clear of today’s opponents in their division.