2017 will be partly remembered as the year of Slaughtneil. The small Derry club are achieving extraordinary things: their senior hurlers reached the All-Ireland semi-finals, only to fall to Cuala of Dublin, while their senior footballers will face Dr. Crokes of Kerry in the senior football final in Croke Park on Saint Patrick's Day.
Added to that is the remarkable success of their camogie side, who secured the All-Ireland camogie club championship at Croke Park yesterday with a two-point win over Sarsfields of Galway before a record crowd of 6,123 in Croke Park.
The entire afternoon was wrapped in emotion for Slaughtneil. Joint manager Thomas Cassidy passed away before the drawn Ulster final, having battled ill-health for a long time. His daughters Aoife, Brona, and Eilis are all players of the panel, and remarkably, they did not miss a single training session throughout the season, and played the Ulster final three days after the burial of their father.
All three played in Croke Park yesterday, with Aoife captaining the side to a remarkable triumph. After the game, she gave an emotional interview to AIB, reflecting on the loss of her father and an amazing achievement.
The full match can be watched back on AIB's Youtube channel.