Wildcats hoping to end 23 year wait for league silverware

Wildcats hoping to end 23 year wait for league silverware

The last time the Waterford Wildcats lifted silverware was more than two decades ago.

The 1999/2000 Super League season saw Waterford reign supreme as their decade of dominance came to a close as the new millennium rang in.

The 1999 title book ended a five-year winning run with the Wildcats picking up one more postseason title in 2001. In their five-year domination of the league, Waterford also secured two regular-season titles in 87/87 and 98/99.

While the name and format of the competition has changed over the years, the central premise remains the same with one team winning the regular season before the playoffs decide the overall post-season winner for the year.


Killester come to this final as regular season champions having beaten the Liffey Celtics in the last few weeks. The two teams had to play off in a one-off game with both tied at the top of the table on every usable metric, with Killester smashing their Dublin neighbours by 32 points in the decider.

While the Wildcats are hunting history on Sunday, Killester's win over the Celtics was historic in its own right as they brought an end to a 44-year wait for a title having last won in 1980.

The weight of momentum and positive energy will be entirely against the Wildcats on Sunday though with Killester on course for the league double with both their women's and men's sides.

The potential club double-double comes just a year removed from Killester winning the Paudie O'Connor Cup.


The chips are very much stacked against Tommy O'Mahony's side, but they have proven their worth in 2023, winning 14 of their 20 league games and beating every team in the league in the process. The only side they had not beaten in the regular season was the Liffey Celtics, but that wrong was righted in the play-off semi-finals with a three-point cushion over the Dublin side.

If Tommy O'Mahony's side are to get over the line, they will be leaning on the stalwarts of the team as well as the youth to get the job done.

American Jade Compton has had a massive impact on the team since coming to Ireland and has struck up a formidable relationship with Alarie Mayze.

Then, the Hickey sisters - Sarah and Kate - along with club Captain Helena Rohan form an iron-clad starting five capable of - and proven to have the ability - to beat any side in the league.

Along with the more senior players in the squad, the U20 players who line out at the senior grade will be crucial also. The Wildcats won the U20 Cup title earlier this year and Caitlin Gloeckner, Sarah Hickey and Orla Dullaghan will all be looking to gain their second piece of silverware for 2024.

While Waterford have the players to get the job done, Killester's charges are track-proven and eager to strike while the iron is hot. Winning breeds winning and the likes of Irish internationals Claire Melia and Michelle Clark in their ranks, will prove to be a handful on Saturday.

Killester also boast heavy scoring prowess in Jiselle Thomas alongside Keowa Walters Leilani Turner who have been the driving force behind securing their place in the final.

With history riding on this game in more ways than one, the Wildcats will be hoping that their final game of the season will be a winning one that brings an end to a very long wait, but we'll have to wait until the final buzzer to find out.