Owens already eyeing up return as appetite shows no sign of weaning 2 months ago

Owens already eyeing up return as appetite shows no sign of weaning

By Daragh Small

Dublin All-Ireland winner Nicole Owens expects to be back in time for next year’s TG4 Championship campaign after she claimed her third Brendan Martin Cup win.

The 26-year-old former All-Star watched on from the sidelines as Mick Bohan’s side were 2-3 to 0-4 winners in front of a record 56,114 attendance at Croke Park on Sunday.

Owens suffered a ruptured ACL in her right knee and had to have surgery after she departed injured against Cork in the All-Ireland semi-final.

The St Sylvester’s forward did most of the damage prior to Dublin’s round robin victory over Monaghan on 27 July.

“It is a crappy injury and something that is a bit more prevalent these days,” said Owens.

“It needs rehab now. The work will get done in the pre-season and I am hoping to be back on the pitch for championship next season.

“It was tough for me but the same as anyone who didn’t get on the final and would have hoped to. We have had a few bad injuries.

“We would have loved to win and obviously I would have loved to have been involved but I did as much as I could from the sideline and the girls did the job on the pitch.

Owens, who made her Dublin debut against Cork in 2012, was thrilled to see her teammates earn their own share of history in a brilliant weekend for Dublin football.

“It is funny because I was around for the three before that we lost. At one point I didn’t think I would even get one,” said Owens.

“It has been great to see the momentum shift, and this team grow and mature. It is something I couldn’t have conceived in 2016 when we had just lost our third in a row.”

Meanwhile, team selector Paul Casey hopes Mick Bohan remains on as the TG4 All-Ireland Senior winners push for a fourth successive crown.

“It’s mad when you get involved in a team like this it’s an eye-opener,” said Casey, who has completed two years with the Dubs.

“When you are a player everything is done for you and you take it for granted. But you see, even as part of the management team, how much work Mick does.

“He has everything in place for the team and management team. He is so important to this group. He leaves no stone unturned in terms of his preparation.

“Mick signed up for another two years last year. He will enjoy the next few days because we have worked hard. It’s time to let the hair down, the pressure is off now. It is time to reflect on a job well done.

“You would hope we will stick together. If Mick stays around I can’t see any of us going anywhere.

“Please God we all knuckle down and are ready for next year.”