Cork edged closer to a final spot with a Littlewoods Division One Camogie win over Kilkenny yesterday, but a lack of officials at the top-tier fixture was a bone of contention for both teams.
Paudie Murray's side ran out 2-17 to 0-9 winners at Páirc Uí Rinn, with Tipperary already through to the league decider after their win over Galway yesterday.
Team captain Amy O'Connor hit 1-3 for the victors, and she spoke to Valerie Wheeler for Off the Ball afterwards about her disappointment at the lack of linesmen for such a high-profile fixture.
"Yeah, to be honest, I didn't actually realise there were no linesmen. I did hear one of the Kilkenny players giving out about it alright but yeah, it shouldn't happen, it shouldn't.
"It's a National League game, it's Cork versus Kilkenny, a big game. And in these games, a small decision can make a big difference so there should be linespeople. That's not good enough."
The Camogie Association commented on the absence: "Unfortunately at a number of the weekend's fixtures, there was a lack of a full complement of match officials.
"This was due to a severe shortage of match officials as a result of fixture congestion (at club and intercounty level as well as other competitions) predominantly resulting from recent poor weather etc.
"This scenario is far from ideal and is something that we are looking to rectify during the coming weeks."
Cork's Amy O'Connor spoke about the absence of linesmen after her side's victory over Kilkenny earlier this afternoon ⬇️
"It shouldn't happen, it's a National League game" #Camogie pic.twitter.com/goHNY48A8a
— Off The Ball (@offtheball) March 8, 2020
The weather deteriorated during the game, with the Rebelletes taking full advantage of the hailstones to score a number of points in that period, a spell that particularly pleased the 24-year-old O'Connor.
"It was bad, I was actually expecting the ref to call us in at one stage, I was like 'we can't be playing in this' but for some reason it inspired us on a bit and we got back into the game - so bring on the hailstones every week!"
O'Connor also spoke after the game about the importance of securing the win against a Kilkenny team that have proven stern opposition in the recent past.
"We're delighted to get the win. Obviously we knew Kilkenny would be a tough test but all we wanted to do was get the couple of points on the board so we're delighted to get the win today.
"We said at half-time we knew they'd come back and throw everything at us in the second half, because we did take a bit of a lead. They did get back into the game but we got a couple of goals and I think that settled us again.
"I had a few chances that I should have put away but, overall, with the conditions and stuff, as a group we probably are happy with the performance. All we were looking for today was the win against Kilkenny, it's been five weeks since we played Waterford, so again just the win was the most important thing."
Offaly are next up for Cork as the Munster side continue their pursuit of a league final place.