Manager Shane Ronayne said it’s “fantastic” to bring the Mary Quinn Memorial Cup back to Tipperary, before introducing each of his ‘invincibles’ to rapturous applause from the crowd. “I’m a Cork man but I’m very honoured to be up on the stage with a Tipperary All-Ireland team.
“A lot of hard work went into what happened yesterday - it wasn’t just on the day. There has been an incredible amount of work done by everybody involved in the team and all management down through the year. We started back in December with a couple of trials and things like that, and we took a conscious decision not to train mid week and I think that proved to be the right thing to do. We were very fresh, we were much fresher than Tyrone yesterday. The girls bought into what was being done and I can’t thank them enough. They were incredible yesterday - they have been incredible all year. They are the only GAA team in the whole country unbeaten. They were unbelievable all year - 14 wins and one draw and no one else can compare to that. Girls, that’s a phenomenal achievement.
“We set out to win three cups and we got the three of them and it’s fantastic. A brilliant bunch, a privilege to work with and I’m very proud to be up here on stage with them,” he added.
Chairperson of Ardfinnan Ladies Football Club, Peggy Kennedy, is “so, so proud” of the Tipperary team. “I have seen ye nearly every time this year - so good every one of ye. Proud of Sam(antha Lambert) coming back into this village, proud of my club, proud of Laura (Dillon), proud of every one of ye. I would like to thank you all for coming here tonight to support us,” she praised.
The 2 Johnnies led in singing Happy Birthday to Róisín Howard and Áine Fitzgerald; Patricia Hickey banged out a rendition of 'American Pie'; and Samantha Lambert joked about the “golf ball” on her forehead. “My fellow clubmate over there, Laura Dillon, ran into me in the first twenty seconds of the match and I have a golf ball on my forehead now…Laura likes to keep it in the team,” she laughed.