National League Preview – Armagh Camogie

Armagh enjoyed a terrific 2020 and will aim to carry that great form into their national league campaign.

Michael Murphy led his side to All-Ireland glory last December with a three-point win over Cavan, but the Orchard County have a new man in the bainisteoir bib.

Mattie Lennon takes over the reigns for the 2021 season and brings with him a wealth of experience and knowledge.

The Derrynoose native, who will also lead his clubs senior hurling side, has been in charge of the Armagh, Monaghan and more recently Tyrone hurlers during a great managerial career.

His camogs will contest Group One of Division Three, facing off against Down, Offaly and Wexford.

The Junior All-Ireland Champions get their 2021 season up and running with an away tie against neighbours Down on Saturday 15th of May.

They took on the Mourne side in their solitary league encounter last season, losing out by eight points in the end, 2-8 to 0-6.

Covid-19 restrictions saw the league ditched, meaning Armagh missed out on ties against Louth, Carlow and Clare.

Their next game came eight months later, in the Ulster Intermediate Championship Final, when Down were once again the opposition.

The Orchard County lost out by six this time but their luck soon changed when they began their run in the Junior All-Ireland Championship.

Their full-forward line of Rachael Merry along with the deadly Donnelly duo, Ciara and Leanne, led Armagh to All-Ireland success.

The Donnelly sisters were rewarded for their efforts by being named on the ‘Soaring Stars’ Team of the Year.

The older of the two Ciara, who racked up 0-13 in the showpiece, also picked up the Junior Player of the Year award.

In defence, Louise Toner holds command from centre half back while Nicola Woods provides solid backup by guarding the edge of the square.

Ciara Hill is one of the most impressive Camogie players in the county and she recently picked up the Gaelic Life club Player of the Year for her role with Granemore.

Armagh will hope they can carry last years momentum into this season and get off to a flying start in just over a weeks’ time.

They host Offaly in round two before making the long trip down south to meet Wexford in the final round.

The aim for the ladies and their new manager will be to secure promotion and get back to Division Two for the first time since 2019.

Armagh will also contest the Premier Junior All-Ireland Championship once again as they head for two in a row.

League action is the priority at the minute and all the attention will be on that round one clash.