Knockananna’s Rachel Byrne tells her team ‘it’s a privilege to be your captain’

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“Knockananna, you’re a very good team. Returning as All-Ireland champions, this makes it three in a row,” was how Wicklow Camogie Chairperson Ivor Lehane began his presentation to the Senior camogie champions after their victory over a brave Kiltegan in Pearse’s Park on Sunday evening.

e then called on Knockananna captain Rachel Byrne to come up and collect the cup which the young star did to a rousing round of applause and great cheers from the Knockananna supporters.

Rachel was outstanding in the final and although tears of pride welled up, she handled the pressure of public speaking superbly well.

“I just want to say thanks to the County Board and to all the officials,” said Rachel. “Kiltegan, thanks very much for the game. Ye are doing great this year with your Junior and Senior teams in the finals so there’s no doubt that ye will be back very strong next year and we look forward to meeting ye again,” she added.

Rachel paid a special thanks to their sponsors Yurts and to O’Keeffe’s pub in Knockananna for all their help and support over the last year and more.

“To Tom (Byrne) and Serge (Goetelen), the effort that ye put in every week is unbelievable. We’re training since the start of last year because we went straight through, winning our Leinster and All-Ireland. I think we finished up in March and then straight into league so ye have got no rest but thank you very much.

“I could go on thanking loads of people for ages here. All the people who do massive work behind the scenes, Loretta (Mutton), you do amazing work. And all our committee are amazing as well. Thank you all very much.

“And lastly, thank you to this unbelievable team right here in front of me. It’s an absolute privilege,” she said before becoming emotional.

“I don’t know why Tom asked me to do this because he knows that I can’t stand up in front of people or talk,” she said as she regained her composure, before adding, “it’s a privilege to be captain here today. To be centre-forward, I’m literally privileged to have a place on that team. And it’s not just the starting team. It’s everyone on the sideline, it’s the Junior team. It’s everyone,” she added.

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