Gerard Smyth collects his Louth Poc Fada title from County Board chairman Des Halpenny last month. He will be hoping to lift the All-Ireland title when he takes to Annaverna on Saturday
The All-Ireland Poc Fada will take place at Annaverna on the Cooley Mountains this Saturday where holder, ex Tipperary goalkeeper Brendan Cummins, will be seeking his ninth title.
Also this weekend Waterford’s Patricia Jackman will be looking to capture the camogie title for the seventh year running where she will be up against the four provincial champions.
This year’s competition was launched recently by GAA president Aogan O Fearghall and sponsor Martin Donnelly said he was delighted to continue to support this wonderful and truly unique event. The Poc Fada is played out over a 5km course which takes in the wonderful views of Dundalk as well as Carlingford and this year Pearse Óg’s Gerard Smyth will be flying the local flag as Louth bids for its first winner since Paul Dunne in 2003.
There are three former U-16 winners in the field for this year’s senior event where they will be trying their best to dethrone Cummins. They are Aaron Murphy (Limerick 2007), Noel Fallon (Roscommon 2009) and Cillian Kiely (Offaly 2011/12).
The 1965 Poc Fada Champion Denis Murphy from Cork will also be honoured at this year’s event and this is sure to add to the occasion of what is the 54th running of the event.
For the first time there will be a competition on the day for U-16 camogie players where the new four provincial winners will take their place alongside the competitors in the senior hurling, senior camogie and U-16 hurling events.
List of competitors for 2015 Poc Fada:
SENIOR HURLING: Aaron Murphy (Limerick), Andrew Fahey (Clare), Brendan Cummins (Tipperary), Cillian Kiely (Offaly), Eoin Reilly (Laois), Gerard Smith (Louth), Karol Keating (Down), Keith Raymond (Sligo), Noel Fallon (Roscommon), Paddy McKillion (Tyrone), Patrick Kelly (Clare), James Skehill (Galway).
SENIOR CAMOGIE: Aisling Corbett (Clare), Catherine McGourty (Down), Catriona Daly (Galway), Elaine Gallery (Dublin), Patricia Jackman (Waterford).
U-16 HURLING: Cormac Phillips (Mayo), Barry O’Mahony (Kerry), Padraig Delaney (Laois), Reece McSorley (Derry), Shaun Murray (Waterford).
U-16 CAMOGIE: Ann-Marie Smyth (Ulster), Sarah Healy (Connacht), Ciara O’Looney (Leinster), Aine O Loughlin (Munster).