Name: Kate Nolan
Club: Myshall and Carlow
Earliest sporting memory: I remember being down in the old pitch in Myshall sitting in the car and my sister, Gillian, was going training. I wasn’t happy I couldn’t go down to the pitch. Mammy had a hurl at home so the following week she let me go to the pitch with a sliotar and the hurl. The hurl was nearly bigger than I was.
Memorable sporting moments: I have three. The year we won the Division 3 national camogie league. That was a massive turning point for Carlow camogie. We saw we could compete with the best teams in the country. The second one was winning the All-Ireland Premier Junior championship. It was the first time to play in Croke Park and it was brilliant to see the Carlow colours there. A massive one was winning the intermediate camogie All-Ireland final with Myshall in Croke Park.
Biggest influence on career: My father, John, always reminded us that practice makes perfect and he was always outside pucking the ball around with us. My mother, Marguerite, brought the sporting aspect in where she said camogie is competitive but it is a great chance to meet people. She brought in the social aspect of it too. She truly believed whatever happens on the pitch stays on the pitch and told us to be kind to people on the pitch because you never know what is going on in their background. In Borris Vocational School teacher Orla Bambury was brilliant. There was a lot of Carlow girls coming in and playing with Kilkenny girls. It didn’t matter where you were from. If you were good and willing to put in the effort she recognised that. Mary Smyth, who passed away recently, was a great support for us all in the school as well.
Sporting hero: Cork dual-player Rena Buckley. She is unbelievable.
Most difficult opponent: Olivia Jordan from Myshall. The nature of our positions meant we were always marking each other in training. I used to think ‘please don’t have me marking Olivia’, but it always happened. She was one of the most difficult opponents I ever marked.
If I could turn back the clock: I would turn it back to a schools All-Ireland semi-final against Coachford down in Cork where we had done so well in winning the Leinster final. We were confident, knew we could do it but on the day it didn’t click for us. We knew we were capable of winning it but we let it slip by us. I would love to go back to that day and give it a go again.
Your favourite holiday: A skiing holiday, without a doubt. I have been on a few but one in Andorra where there were 13-14 of us. It was a brilliant holiday. I think it was 2017 and it was absolutely amazing. The skiing holidays are my favourite but a family holiday in America last summer was brilliant as well.
Memories outside sport: I really liked secondary school. I enjoyed meeting people, made friends and enjoyed my time there.
Favourite bar/restaurant: I love Mimosa Bar in Carlow where the food is great and The Lord Bagenal is excellent as well.
Three people you would bring to dinner (not family): I would definitely bring Rena Buckley. She is unreal and an inspiration to so many people. I would also like to meet Michelle Obama to ask her what it was like being the first lady in the US. It would also be good to bring a comedian. Somebody like talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres would be good craic.
What would be heaven for you: The day we played in the All-Ireland junior club final was unreal. Looking forward, the ideal one is obviously winning at the highest level with Carlow or Myshall. Playing at the highest grade and having a spell where we would go full whack at the highest level is the dream.