Armagh begin title defence with trip to Clones

The Armagh Ladies begin their provincial title defence with a trip to Clones on Saturday afternoon as they take on Monaghan.

The ladies clash is the curtain raiser to the men’s opening round clash between Monaghan and Down.

Armagh are out to defend their title and begin their tilt for a third Ulster crown in three seasons.

It all began with a win over Monaghan in Clones two years ago, when the Orchard won Ulster for the first time in five years.

Ronan Murphy’s side overcame Donegal in last years decider, with just one point to spare at the final whistle.

Armagh dominated Monaghan on their way to claim back-to-back last season when the side met at the last four stage.

Alex Clarke and Blaithin Mackin netted, while Aimee Mackin top scored with 0-8 as Armagh ran out easy 2-18 to 0-10 victors.

That was one of three games the two teams share in 2021, with Armagh winning two, while Monaghan shaded the league clash.

Armagh begin their title defence with a trip to Clones
Photo Credit: Brendan Monaghan


Saturday’s showdown will be the second time the pair have crossed swords this year, as Armagh already have one win over their Farney neighbours.

Monaghan gave the Orchard their toughest test as they breezed through the group stages of the league.

The margin was seven by the time the final whistle sounded, but notably, it was the first game that Armagh didn’t rattle the net.

Armagh begin their title defence with a trip to Clones
Photo Credit: Brendan Monaghan

Unfortunately for the Orchard, their league campaign didn’t go as planned, finishing with defeat to Kerry in the Division Two final.

The experience of battling it out in Croke Park will surely stand to them as they turn their attention to the championship.

Six players were named on the Division Two Team of the Year. Anna Carr, Grace Ferguson, Lauren McConville, Blaithin Mackin, Catherine Marley and Aimee Mackin were all rewarded for their performances.

Despite that loss, Armagh carry some brilliant form into Saturday’s tie and should begin their title defence with a victory.