The Republic of Ireland retained the Bob Docherty Cup this morning following a 4-1 victory over debutants Gibraltar in Cambrils Park, Salou.
It brought the curtain down on a stunning couple of days in the Spanish venue as the team captured the John Read Trophy yesterday by virtue of beating England in a penalty shootout.
There were two Mayo girls on the field for today's final game as both Amy Mahon (St. Joseph’s Community College, Charlestown) and Alison Long (St. Patrick's College, Lacken Cross) started against Gibraltar.
The Republic of Ireland were rattled midway through the first period when Gibraltar netted the opener with 14 minutes played, and they maintained that lead into the half-time break.
However, Áine Walsh (Salesian Secondary College, Pallaskenry) made a positive impact when introduced at half-time as she converted 10 minutes into the restart and quickly followed up with a second goal to put her country in command.
Ellen Molloy (Presentation SS, Kilkenny) cut down the left channel to slot home Ireland’s third six minutes later, and her school-mate Freya DeMange, also a second-half sub, sliced the ball over the head of the Gibraltar keeper to make it 4-1 with seven minutes remaining.
Before this morning’s final group games, Wales were on six points following two wins, while Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland were level on five points, with one win, one draw and a bonus point for their penalty shoot-out victories. That meant all eyes were on Wales v Northern Ireland once the Republic of Ireland had earned full points with their success against Gibraltar.
Wales were 1-0 down to Northern Ireland at half-time but the exciting fixture finished 2-2. With the resulting penalty shootout, a bonus point was up for grabs and Northern Ireland came out victorious on a 4-3 scoreline.
However, having gained eight points in their three group games, the Republic of Ireland were named champions while a dejected Northern Ireland were runners-up in a complex conclusion to this year’s development tournament.
As mentioned, today's win represented a double success for the Republic of Ireland as yesterday's 5-3 penalty shootout victory over England won them the John Read Trophy. The game had finished 1-1 in normal time. On Monday, the Republic of Ireland commenced their tournament with a 2-0 victory over Scotland.
As well as players Long and Mahon, Mayo was represented on the Republic of Ireland set-up by head coach Richie Berkeley, a native of Tallaght, Dublin, who teaches at Sancta Maria College, Louisburgh, and coach Emma Mullin.