History and Exclusivity at Camogie Finals

Deep into injury time with a replay looking likely after a tense, defensive, low scoring affair, substitute Julia White somehow broke free from a pack of Kilkenny defenders and scored the point that saw Croke Park explode in a sea of Red and White as Cork regained the Liberty Insurance All Ireland Camogie Championship.

It was a moment of magic that created history for her Captain Rena Buckley who became the most decorated player in Gaelic Games history securing a 18th All Ireland title across Ladies Football and Camogie.

She also goes down in history as the first person to captain her county up the steps of Croke Park in both codes.

It is an achievement for the ages albeit one which will likely be worn lightly by the physiotherapist who focused on Camogie this year while she completed a Masters Degree in UCD.

The crowd of  20,483 at Croke Park represented a small increase on last year, bolstered by strong support for Dublin and Westmeath contesting the Junior final on the ‘undercard’ but it was the Cork faithful who had the biggest numbers and the brightest look about them as the Senior Final ebbed and flowed.

It was a winner too for Liberty Insurance who were completing the fifth year of their title sponsorship and pulled out all the stops in terms of fan engagement and social media activation.

The sole title sponsorship gives them much more of an ownership around the stadium and the exclusive advertising pitch side, as well as the sweeps and stings on the big screen, meant it was very up front about who was the main supporter of the sport.

A four-page editorial wrap around on the Sunday Independent gave added profile to the sport’s biggest day and both the flag bearer and Squad goals initiatives that had run throughout the season were well promoted on social media and in the stadium.

The Camogie Association and Liberty Insurance teams will now plan to sit down and see about extending the deal into the future.  Enhanced TV coverage of the Quarter Final and Semi Final stages will no doubt help the arguments to go again while the ownership of Croke Park yesterday, and Liberty’s commitment to Women in Sport across other areas and codes will also be a plus.

Liberty Insurance and the Camogie Association are among the more than 220 organisations that play an active part of the Sport for Business community.  

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Image Credit Gary Carr, Oisin Kennery Inpho

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