Kerry Taggart became the first woman to represent Lurgan Town at Senior International level when she played in the Istria Cup last week. Having missed out 2 years ago due to a family illness, Kerry thought her dream of representing her country had slipped away. But she got her head down and worked hard and got her reward. She took time out of her busy schedule to chat with us.
Lurgan Town: How did you find out you had been selected for the squad? Kerry Taggart: The head coach Alfie Wylie rang me and asked me to give the senior squad another go. He said it was my chance to get a place on the squad. So I decided to take the opportunity and go to Croatia for the Istria Cup.
LT: What did it feel like when you where told? KT: I was very happy. It was nice to know that Alfie thought highly enough of me still to invite me.
LT: What teams did you play against in the competition and how did you get on against them? KT: We played Slovakia, Croatia and Hungary. NI v Slovakia we were beaten 1-0. We held our own for 90 minutes but unfortunately Slovakia clinched the winner in late in the game. NI v Croatia. The host nation were good but not good enough for NI. We won 1 nil. Yay! NI v Hungary. The last game of the Competition and Hungary won 2-0 scoring both goals in the last 10 minutes of the game.
LT: How much game time did you get? KT: I played roughly 145 minutes earning myself 3 international caps which I’m absolutely delighted about.
LT: What was your favourite game and why? KT: Probably our last game. Although we were beaten 2-0 it was the most minutes I played. Getting 85 mins roughly. Our game against Croatia when we won 1-0 was very good too.
LT: Who were the most difficult opponents? KT: Probably our last game against Hungary. They were a very quick passing side, it was a good challenge for me and the squad.
LT: Did you have a favourite moment on the trip? KT: The whole trip was a great experience which I will never forget. Earning myself 3 international caps was the icing on the cake.
LT: Any advice for the up and coming girls teams? KT: To work hard in training and games. Get the ball to your feet at every opportunity. I loved the NI set up. It was constant ball work which really improves your technical ability. Just remember ‘you are a better player than you were yesterday but not as good as what you will be tomorrow’ practice makes perfect.
LT: What will you bring back to our ladies team from the experience? KT: I will hopefully bring confidence to the side as the girls will now know that you can be an international player even in a lower league. I play with great players at Lurgan Town so it’s good to get our clubs name on the map. We are 1 big family #heartonthesleeve #GAWA