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McCay makes 150th appearane for Ireland

Drumquin's Shirley McCay, right, made her 150th appearance for Ireland

Drumquin’s Shirley McCay, right, made her 150th appearance for Ireland

DRUMQUIN woman Shirley McCay made her 150th appearance for the Ireland women’s hockey team on Tuesday evening – at the ripe old age of 25!

McCay reached the remarkable milestone during a comprehensive 4-1 victory over Scotland in a European Championship warm-up game at Mossley.

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The former Omagh Academy skipper became the second Ireland player to clock up 150 games this week after international colleague and friend Alex Speers reached the milestone in a 1-1 draw against Wales.

McCay, a former winner of the Ulster Herald Sports Personality of the Year award, made her debut against Canada in 2007 and joined the 100 club by captaining the Irish to a 2-0 win over France.

Fifteen months ago the Old Alex player and her Irish team-mates suffered bitter disappointment when they missed out on qualification for the London Olympics.

Ahead of winning her150th cap against the Scots McCay insisted she had had to make major sacrifices while support of friends and family had proved invaluable during her time with the national senior squad.

“It’s been seven years of hard work and dedication but it’s been a complete team effort and always been the result of the support of family and friends around you and the 10 other players on the pitch at the same time. So it’s going to be a special day.”

Priority for McCay and her team-mates is now the European Championship where Ireland face Belarus, Holland and hosts Belgium next month.

McCay, a former member of Omagh Hockey Club, recently took a year out to travel after completing her studies in Dublin.

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