Gael Linn Cup

The Gael Linn Cup is a bi-ennial tournament, the most important representative competition for elite level participants in the women's team field sport of camogie, contested by Ireland's four provincial teams with competitions at senior and junior level on alternate years. The tournament has existed in various guides since 1956, currently the senior tournament is played in even years and the junior tournament in odd years. An inter-provincial colleges competition is also played at secondary school/high school level.

Inter-provincial Camogie Championship
IrishCraobh Idir-Chúigí Camógaíochta na hÉireann
TrophyGael Linn Cup
Title holdersLeinster (26th title)
First winnerLeinster
Most titlesLeinster (26 titles)

Table of winnersEdit

Click on the year for details and team line-outs.
County Wins Years won
Leinster 26 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959, 1960, 1962, 1965, 1968, 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972, 1978, 1979, 1981, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988, 1989, 1991, 1993, 2006, 2010, 2011
Munster 20 1961, 1963, 1964, 1966, 1980, 1982, 1990, 1992, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2009
Connacht 4 1973, 1974, 2000 and 2008
Ulster 2 1967, 2007


Interprovincial camogie matches were played as part of the 1928 and 1932 Tailteann Games programmes and a further inter-provincial match was played in July 1954 in Navan as part of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the Camogie Association. Munster beat Ulster by 8–3 to 5–3 in a match that was described as the best of the year.

The enthusiasm generated by the match at Navan led to the establishment of an annual inter-provincial competition two years later, with the first final between Leinster and Ulster at Knockbridge, Co Louth. Leinster has dominated the series with 26 titles, followed by Munster with 20. Connacht won four titles in 1973, 1974, 2000 and 2008 and Ulster won two in 1967 and 2007.


In 1993 and 1994 the Gael Linn Cups were played with teams of 15-a-side for a two-year experimental period, as a prelude to the increase in team size form 12 to 15 in 1999 for all matches.

Two competitionsEdit

The series was played as a junior competition between 1974 and 1976. Senior and junior competitions were run concurrently from 1977. The competition format was moved to a single weekend in October/November during 1985-88 and again since 1999. The date was moved to June in 1995, back to October/November in 2004 and to May since 2008. As with the Railway Cups in Gaelic Football and Hurling, the competition has been popular with players but survived several attempts to abolish the series since 1986.

Shwarzkopf hair products sponsored the competition from 1999 to 2004. In 2009, after the withdrawal of Ulster the series was played in a blitz format with 30 minute games.[1] In 2010 it was decided to alternate the competition between junior and senior status and the senior competition was restored to full match status with four provinces contesting the semi-finals. In the absence of Antrim players an all Derry side represented Ulster in the 2010 semi-final.


Players who won Gael Linn Cup medals who never won All Ireland titles include Kathleen Griffin, Lily Parle, Lilian Howlett, Nono McHugh, Claire Hanrahan, Vera Mackey, Pat Crangle and Josie Kelly, affording them valuable recognition in the days before the Camogie All Stars Awards were inaugurated. Geraldine Callinan (2 Gael Linn Interprovincial Medals)Geraldine Callinan was the youngest ever Leinster player at 14 years of age. Scored 3 goals and was instrumental in winning the match after being 11 points down at half time.

Highlights and incidentsEdit

  • Clare player Patricia O'Grady's solo performance in the 1990 final when she scored 9–1 against Ulster at Ballyholland, one of the outstanding scoring exhibitions, not just in the competition but in the history of the game.
  • Among the first camogie matches to be filmed for television packages were two Gael Linn Cup semi-finals at Casement Park, Belfast in 1959 and Carrickmacross in 1963.
  • Joan Gormley's last-minute goal for Leinster against Munster in the 1983 final at Ballinlough.
  • The 1996 final which produced ten goals, an amazing Munster comeback from eight points down to force the match into extra time and went on to win by 4–18 to 6–10.
  • The 1997 final in which Leinster were in front by four points with ten minutes to go, for the second successive year Munster came back to equalise and scored 3–7 in extra-time to take the trophy.
  • The 7-38 scored by Munster against Leinster in the 1999 semi-final, the highest scoreline in the history of the tournament.
  • The dramatic finale to the 2006 final when two late points snatched victory for Leinster against Munster.

Gael Linn Cup Senior Inter-Provincial FinalsEdit

The first figure is the number of goals scored (equal to 3 points each) and the second total is the number of points scored, the figures are combined to determine the winner of a match in Gaelic games.

Gael Linn Cup FinalsEdit

Click on the year for details and team lineouts.

Gael Linn TrophyEdit

Click on the year for details and team lineouts.
County Wins Years won
Munster 17 1975, 1977, 1978, 1980, 1983, 1985, 1987, 1988, 1992, 1994, 1996, 1997, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2011
Ulster 8 1979, 1989, 1990, 1991, 1993, 1998, 2000 and 2002
Leinster 7 1976, 1982, 1984, 1986, 1999, 2001 2007
Connacht 4 1981, 1995, 2006 and 2009

Gael Linn Trophy FinalsEdit


Leinster won the first five competitions, have won five in a row and seven-in-a-row since then, and have fielded players from nine of the province's 12 counties on victorious teams.

  • The first winning Leinster team:

Kathleen Woods (Louth), May Kavanagh (Wicklow), Claire Monaghan (Kildare), Ettie Kearns (Meath), May Kavanagh (Dublin), Lily Parle (Wexford), Annette Corrigan (Dublin), Kathleen Mills (Dublin), Fran Maher (Dublin), Mary O'Sullivan (Dublin), Una O'Connor (Dublin), Kay Douglas (Wicklow), Subs: Kathleen Duffy (Louth), Madge Quigley (Louth), Brigid Judge (Kildare).


Munster won their first competition on a sodden field at Salthill in 1961, in the year Connacht surprisingly inflicted Leinster's first defeat in the competition.


Maeve Gilroy was the star in Ulster's first success in the 1967 at Parnell Park, achieved with ten players from Antrim and two from Down.


Connacht's breakthrough victory came in 1973, when an all Galway side defeated an all-Cork Munster side 1–6 to 1–1 in a replayed semi-final described in the Connacht Tribune as a “one of the best exhibitions of the game for many a year”[10] and then beat Leinster in the final by a single point at Parnell Park, Dublin.

  • The winning team was: Margaret Killeen, Mary Kilkenny, Claire Collins, Kathleen Quinn, Rosemary Divilly, Nono McHugh, Josie Kelly, Catherine Ward, Ann Donohue, Phil Foye, Jane Murphy, Margaret Murphy.

Team for 1954 revivalEdit

The teams for the 1954 revival match at Navan were:

GK 1 Eileen Duffy (Dublin)
FB 2 May Kavanagh (Dublin)
RWB 3 Ettie Kearns (Meath)
CB 4 Sheila Donnelly (Dublin)
LWB 5 Aggie Kavanagh (Wicklow)
MF 6 Aileen Kearns (Meath)
MF 7 Annette Corrigan (Dublin) (0-1)
MF 8 Kathleen Mills (Dublin) (2-1)
RWF 9 Una O'Connor (Dublin) (3-0)
CF 10 Sheila Sleator (Dublin)
LWF 11 Eileen Bourke (Dublin) (2-0)
FF 12 Kay Douglas (Wicklow) (1-1).
GK 1 Bernie Kelly (Down)
FB 2 Moya Forde (Antrim)
RWB 3 Teresa Halferty (Derry)
CB 4 Carrie Rankin (Derry)
LWB 5 Bernadette King (Armagh)
MF 6 Maeve Gilroy (Antrim) (1-0)
MF 7 Nancy Danagher (Cavan)
MF 8 Ita O'Reilly (Antrim) (1-0)
RWF 9 Patsy McCloskey (Derry) (2-1)
CF 10 Deirdre O'Gorman (Antrim) (1-1)
LWF 11 Chris Hughes (Antrim)
FF 12 Patsy O'Brien (Derry) (0-1).

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Preview of 2009 series on
  2. ^ 2002 Munster 7-23 Ulster 0-11 report in Irish Independent
  3. ^ 2004 Munster 1-16 Connacht 1-9 report in Hogan Stand and Irish Independent
  4. ^ 2005 Munster 3-14 Connacht 2-8 report in Irish Independent
  5. ^ 2006 Leinster 2-7 Munster 1-8 report in Irish Independent
  6. ^ 2007 Ulster 2-12 Leinster 3-8 report on
  7. ^ 2008 Connacht 1-14 Munster 2-10 report in Irish Independent and
  8. ^ 2009 Munster 0-7 Connacht 0-2 report on Munster panels and preview on Archived 2009-05-18 at the Wayback Machine
  9. ^ Leinster 3-17 Munster 1-14 report on
  10. ^ Connacht Tribune Galway girls score decisive replay win, Friday Oct 23 1973

External linksEdit