To­day’s play­ers will in­spire girls and young women to stay in­volved

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Sport - - CAMOGIE - DEIRDRE ASHE

THE sec­ond Sun­day in Septem­ber is a spe­cial day in the cal­en­dar of Ir­ish sport, as the Lib­erty In­surance se­nior, in­ter­me­di­ate and ju­nior camo­gie cham­pi­onship fi­nals take place in Croke Park.

I en­cour­age you all to make your way to Croke Park with your fam­ily and friends to #sup­port­her­sport and see matches of the high­est qual­ity and sport­ing en­deav­our.

In the se­nior fi­nal Cork look­ing are to re­gain the ti­tle they last held in 2015 and face a Kilkenny side with am­bi­tions of back-to-back ti­tles. Cork are also in­volved in the in­ter­me­di­ate fi­nal against Meath with vic­tory for the Roy­als mean­ing pro­mo­tion to the se­nior cham­pi­onship next year; in the ju­nior cham­pi­onship, a novel pair­ing sees West­meath line out for the very first time in Croke Park against the league Divi­sion 3 cham­pi­ons Dublin.

The broad­cast­ing of this year’s camo­gie cham­pi­onship knock­out matches re­flects the in­creas­ing lev­els of in­ter­est in women’s sport, while pro­vid­ing a plat­form to show­case the skill lev­els of the coun­try’s finest ath­letes.

Sig­nif­i­cant progress has been made re­cent times with in­creased me­dia in ex­po­sure and ad­di­tional in­vest­ment in women’s sports; how­ever, we are on a jour­ney and there is still more that needs to be done. The ul­ti­mate goal is to recog­nise and cel­e­brate fe­male ath­leti­cism, com­mit­ment and suc­cess. Each of us has a role to play in fur­ther­ing the pro­mo­tion and achieve­ments of women in sport, and it is only by do­ing this that we will con­tinue to ef­fect real and mean­ing­ful change.

The camo­gie play­ers in­volved in this year’s cham­pi­onship are role mod­els in their com­mu­ni­ties whose ac­com­plish­ments in­spire girls and young women to par­tic­i­pate and stay in­volved in sport for years to come. Long may this con­tinue.

In Lib­erty In­surance we are priv­i­leged to work closely with a num­ber of am­bas­sadors in­clud­ing four-time All-Ire­land camo­gie win­ner Mags D’Arcy; for­mer Ir­ish rugby cap­tain Fiona Cogh­lan; Olympic sil­ver medal­list An­nalise Mur­phy; and Ir­ish Olympic pen­tath­lete Natalya Coyle. Their ac­com­plish­ments on the field of play align with our own brand val­ues of in­tegrity, hon­esty, fair­ness and do­ing the right thing for our cus­tomers.

Sup­port­ing the pro­mo­tion of women in sport, ad­vanc­ing the cause of fe­male ath­letes, as­sist­ing in their prepa­ra­tion for par­tic­i­pa­tion on the na­tional and in­ter­na­tional stage, be it in a sport­ing or lead­er­ship ca­pac­ity, is re­ally im­por­tant for broader so­ci­etal gain. As role mod­els in the com­mu­nity and ad­vo­cates for the pro­mo­tion of women in sport, the pas­sion of each of our am­bas­sadors will in­spire girls and young women to take up and play sport, thus en­sur­ing a last­ing legacy for gen­er­a­tions to come.

An im­por­tant part of our spon­sor­ship has been our Squad Goals com­pe­ti­tion. We set out in June with the am­bi­tion of find­ing the coun­try’s most tal­ented camo­gie play­ers, and we’ve cer­tainly seen those skills on dis­play through­out the sum­mer. This year’s Squad Goals fi­nal fea­tures the camo­gie clubs of Gailltir from Water­ford and Sham­rocks of Gal­way; be sure and cheer them on as both teams take to the pitch at half-time in the se­nior fi­nal in an ef­fort to em­u­late last year’s winners, Castle­knock of Dublin, by win­ning €8,000 for their club and be­com­ing the 2017 Squad Goals Cham­pi­ons!

Fi­nally, road safety is very im­por­tant to Lib­erty In­surance, please be safe on your trav­els.

The goal is to recog­nise and cel­e­brate fe­male ath­leti­cism

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