Trinity Meteors will play Killester Basketball Club in the Paudie O’Connor National Cup final, after a dominant 82-60 cup semi-final win over DCU Mercy at Neptune Stadium, helped by a 24-point and 13-rebound performance from Ireland international Dayna Finn. Trinity Meteors, who’ve started the super league season winning ten out of eleven matches ensuring they are now joint top of the Basketball Ireland women’s super league, are now looking to win their first National Cup title since 1996.

Speaking ahead of the National Cup Final Dayna Finn commented, “We’ve more so than ever started to gel together as a team, we’re looking to get a solid week of training in, get that team performance at the weekend and hopefully get over the line on the day! It’s great to be in a National Cup Final and great for Trinity Meteors as it’s the first time we’ve been in this position since 1996. It’s one of the biggest weekends in Irish Basketball and to have TG4 broadcast the game makes it even better, I’m really excited for the game.”

Niall Berry, Head Coach of Trinity Meteors commented, “The energy is good in the training camp as we’re preparing for the National Cup Final. We’ve been playing well all year however it wasn’t like that at the beginning as we had a few tough training sessions but once we got over that everyone has bought into what we’re trying to do as a team. Everything we’re doing is being geared towards being successful this season, so this weekend is nothing different – we’re just trying to win the next game ahead of us.”

Speaking on the success of the season so far Niall attributes this to the strength of the players, “To win that many games in a season, that comes down to the strength of our players. As a coach you’re always trying to put your players in the best position to be successful – you can give them a framework and a style of play but ultimately, they go out on the court, and they are the ones being successful week in and week out. We have Dayna Finn, Claire Melia and Sarah Kenny who have all played at the highest level of Irish basketball – when they go on the floor the motivation is always to be successful. I’m very fortunate as a coach to be in a situation with those type of players and to have captain Rebecca and Niamh Kenny who have played underage basketball with Ireland also. They bring the success to the team and my job is to make sure I give them a good platform and assist them in any way I can. Players win games!”

Niall continued, “It took time to build team cohesion as we brought in several new players at the start of the season, it took time for everyone to get to know each other socially and on the court. I believe task cohesion is more important than social cohesion – ultimately it must translate on the court.”

Niall’s and the teams focus is constantly on the next game, never looking further than that, “We decided early that ‘win the next game’ was going to be our goal – if you win the game ahead of you, you will be in a good position as the season progresses. That’s the mentality within the team now and the players have instilled that within themselves. The goal for the season is to win the next game and it just so happens that if we win the next game, we will be National Champions!”

The Paudie O’Connor Cup final will be played on Sunday 22nd January from 17:30 at the National Basketball Arena and will be live on TG4 and Visit Basketball Ireland website to buy tickets for the game.