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Begley: Tyrone ladies are on the up
23 Jul 2014 16:04
By Paul O'Neill
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A heavy defeat to Armagh recently in the Ladies Football Championship might suggest otherwise, but Gemma Begley is convinced Tyrone are on the up.
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Tyrone have had a difficult time since they reached their first All-Ireland final four years ago.
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The Red Hand County have had no fewer than four changes of management in the meantime and seen a host of players quit the squad, while each year they have failed to make it past the last eight in the All-Ireland Series.
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Last season was particularly tough as Mickey Rea quit as boss after the end of the National League and was replaced by Brian McGee and Paudge Quinn. Also, they had the misfortune of having five players side-lined with cruciate ligament damage at the same time.
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But captain Begley believes Tyrone's fortunes have started to turn – despite going down to Armagh by 2-17 to 1-5 in Ulster.
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She said: "When you want to do well in this game – like many others – you need continuity and stability and unfortunately we have not had too much of that since we lost to Dublin in the 2010 All-Ireland final.
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"Having new managers come in on a regular basis was not ideal because it took them time to settle and get to know the players and vice versa.
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"It is not easy either when players opt out of the squad for different reasons and sadly many of those we lost were some of the best that we had.
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"All of the changes certainly did not help as we sought to challenge for honours but I feel this year things have improved quite a bit. The management we had for last year's Championship has stayed in place and the squad has not altered much."
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