Cork camogie goalkeeper Aoife Murray is undecided about whether or not she will extend her inter-county career into a 17th season.
This year was a memorable one for the Cloughduv netminder, and in addition to securing an eighth All-Ireland senior title, a series of outstanding individual performances helped her land a seventh All-Star award.
A stoppage-time point from Julia White guided the Rebel County towards a dramatic victory over Kilkenny in this year’s decider, but despite having a positive outlook for 2018,Murray will take some time before reach a final call on her future.
“A few people are beginning to ask me that question. It’s always a lot harder with a decision to make when you win because obviously you’re feeling more positive and you think ‘ah yeah, I could do this for another year’. But I am 34, so I’m probably pushing on.
“Apparently there are other things outside of camogie as well, which people keep telling me about! I do have a decision to make, but I’m certainly not going to make it right now. It’s not on my agenda anyway.”
Murray was speaking in Croke Park at the launch of the inaugural Liberty Insurance Camogie All-Stars Tour, which will see the 2016 and 2017 selections facing each other at Universidad Complutense de Madrid on Thursday, November 30.
Murray will be joined in the Spanish capital by six of her inter-county team-mates, and with a reception in the city’s Irish Embassy also planned during the four-day trip, she believes it represents a massive step forward for the sport.
“It’s probably reflective of all of the work that’s being done behind the scenes that people don’t appreciate. Even this year, seeing the quarter-finals live on TV shows again just how much we are progressing.”
With the increased promotion around camogie, Murray is hopeful that there will be a rise in attendance figures for All-Ireland finals. However, she also recognises the importance of participation at underage level, as well as a continued resurgence in counties like Clare and Offaly. “Hopefully what you might see in five, six years time is that we’re no longer talking about 20,000 at a final, we’re talking about 30,000 plus. And hopefully you’re looking at other counties like Clare and Offaly (making a breakthrough). That’s the most important thing for me. I’d love to have an 80,000 [final], but I’d much prefer to see clubs inundated with young girls coming along. I think that’s what I hope anyway from the increased promotion, and all the social media side of things, that that’s what you’ll see.”
2016 Camogie All-Stars: Emma Kavanagh (Kilkenny); Sarah O’Connor (Wexford), Sarah Dervan (Galway), Colette Dormer (Kilkenny); Rebecca Hennelly (Galway), Anne Dalton (Kilkenny); Miriam Walsh (Kilkenny), Orla Cotter (Cork); Michaela Morkan (Offaly), Shelley Kehoe (Wexford), Denise Gaule (Kilkenny); Niamh Mulcahy (Limerick), Tina Hannon (Offaly), Kate Kelly (Wexford).
2017 Camogie All-Stars: Aoife Murray (Cork); Tara Kenny (Galway), Catherine Foley (Kilkenny), Laura Treacy (Cork); Gemma O’Connor (Cork), Maire McGrath (Clare), Eimear O’Sullivan (Cork); Meighan Farrell (Kilkenny), Ashling Thompson (Cork); Chloe Morey (Clare), Katie Power (Kilkenny), Amy O’Connor (Cork); Ailish O’Reilly (Galway), Aisling Maher (Dublin), Aoife Donohue (Galway).
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