Munster FAI Primary 5s Champions 2024

Munster FAI Primary 5s Champions – Gurrane National School

Gurrane National School emerged victorious in the FAI Primary 5s tournament that took place on May 15th in Cahir Park, Tipperary. Showcasing exceptional skill, teamwork, and determination throughout the competition. Here’s a recap of their remarkable journey to the title.

First Round: Gurrane National School vs. St Senan’s National School, Limerick

Gurrane kicked off their campaign with a convincing 3-0 win against St Senan’s National School of Limerick. The match was tightly contested in the first half, ending 0-0 at the break. However, Gurrane dominated the second half, thanks to Róise Walsh’s outstanding performance in which she scored all three goals, securing the victory. Aoife Kelleher came on as a substitute and created numerous chances, adding to Gurrane’s attacking threat.

Second Round: Gurrane National School vs. O’Callaghan Mills, Clare

In their second-round match, Gurrane faced O’Callaghan Mills of Clare and continued their winning streak with another 3-0 triumph. Róise Walsh scored two first-half goals, displaying her consistent form. Shauna Cullinane added a third goal in the second half, sealing the win. To ensure a clean sheet, Ella Bourke and Caoimhe Cronin came on to bolster the defense, while Orla Collins’ excellent goalkeeping kept the opponents at bay.

Semi-Final: Gurrane National School vs. Coolnasmear NS, Waterford

Gurrane qualified at the top of their group and faced the Waterford champions in the semi-final. The match began with Gurrane trailing 1-0 at halftime. Some wonderful saves from Orla Collins and excellent defending by Lucy McCarthy meant that Gurrane remained in the contest.  After the break, Gurrane were much improved and started to create lots of scoring opportunities. Eventually the pressure told and Róise Walsh equalized in the middle of the second half. The game was decided by a stunning free kick late on from Ruby Kelleher, which secured a 2-1 victory and a place in the final.

Final: Gurrane National School vs. Cloughjordan, Tipperary

The stage was set for a thrilling final against Cloughjordan of Tipperary. The match was a rollercoaster of emotions, with Cloughjordan scoring first. Róise Walsh equalized, leaving it 1-1 at halftime. Following quick thinking and an excellent corner from Lucy McCarthy, Shauna Cullinane then put Gurrane ahead 2-1. In the dying moments of the game Cloughjordan equalized to send the match into extra time.

In extra time, Cloughjordan took the lead twice, making it 3-2 and later 4-3. Each time, Róise Walsh responded with crucial goals, including a last-moment equalizer that dramatically brought the game to penalties.

With tensions high, Cloughjordan missed their first penalty, giving Gurrane the advantage. Shauna Cullinane, who played a captain’s role throughout the tournament stepped up and confidently scored Gurrane’s first penalty. Next up was Ruby Kelleher who scored to ensure that Gurrane still held the advantage going into the final round of penalties. The decisive moment came when Róise Walsh stepped up and scored the winning penalty, sparking joyous celebrations from the team and their amazing travelling support.

The final victory was an incredible achievement for Gurrane National School, especially given the small size of the school. Their determination, skill, and teamwork were evident throughout the tournament.

Gurrane National School will now proudly represent Munster in the National Final on May 29th at the Aviva Stadium. Their journey has been a testament to the talent and hard work of all players, and they look forward to competing on one of Ireland’s biggest stages.