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Bad break for Muldoon



Date Published: 15-Jun-2010

IT wasn’t supposed to be like this. What should have been a dream debut against top-tier opposition turned to a nightmare for Connacht stars John Muldoon and Seán Cronin as Ireland suffered a 66-28 humiliating mauling by New Zealand at the Yarrow Stadium, New Plymouth on Saturday.

As if the result and performance wasn’t bad enough, Connacht captain Muldoon suffered a serious fracture to his arm in a tackle and was substituted after just half an hour of action.

The Portumna man’s tour has now been cut short prematurely and he was last evening preparing to fly home along with Jamie Heaslip, who was sent-off and given a five weeks ban after being cited for twice recklessly kneeing an opponent’s head.

The New Zealand team surgeon operated on the backrow on Sunday and the operation was described as a success but it is likely Muldoon will need three or four months to heal.

The 27-year-old, who was man-of-the-match for Ireland against the Barbarians last Friday, was capped twice already against Canada and USA last June but this injury could be a major setback to his international career ambitions.

“It was a serious fracture to the forearm and he won’t be back until October,” said Connacht CEO Gerry Kelly.

“It’s not good for us (Connacht) and it’s not good for him because he was hoping to use the tour to stake a claim for a (permanent) place in the Irish set-up. Unfortunately injury is an occupational hazard. It’s very disappointing, he’s absolutely gutted as you’d expect he would be but knowing Mull, he will bounce back,” added Kelly.

Cronin had a solid enough match under the circumstances, even though he played nervously early on, spilling a ball forward as he was surging into the New Zealand 22 that led to the All Blacks’ first try from the counter attack. The Limerick man recovered though and was workmanlike in set-pieces and busy in the loose.

Declan Kidney’s men were totally out of their depth and Ireland imploded when Heaslip was given an early shower for kneeing All Blacks captain Riche McCaw in a ruck, conceding nine tries in the record defeat.

Although Ireland first choice hooker, Jerry Flannery, joined the squad ahead of Friday night’s clash with the New Zealand Maori, the Munster man is not fully fit and is unlikely to last the full 80 minutes should he be selected and therefore Cronin can expect to feature this weekend and against Australia in the following week’s test.

Meanwhile, there was no joy for Connacht’s Eoin Griffin and Denis Buckley who were part of the Ireland U20s who suffered their third defeat of the IRB Junior World Championships in Rosario on Sunday. Griffin started at outside centre and Buckley came off the bench in the 24th minute but Ireland blew a first half lead and were beaten 24-21 by Argentina.


Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past



A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.


For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

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Archive News

Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013


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Archive News

Athenry fail to take chances as they bow out of Junior Cup



Date Published: 29-Jan-2013

Athenry FC 1

Kilbarrack United 2

(After extra time)

For the second year in succession Athenry were done in extra time in the FAI Junior Cup as last season’s beaten finalist’s came from behind to snatch an excellent game in Moanbawn on Sunday afternoon.

On a heavy pitch that was only playable following extensive groundwork by club officials all morning, the home side were by far the better side in the opening half, but failed to take advantage of a number of opportunities that came their way.

An Alan O’Donovan penalty gave them a merited advantage just after the restart, but thereafter were on the back foot as Kilbarrack took over, but for all their pressing, the home rearguard were dealing comfortably with their forays.

However they were struck a body blow just six minutes from time, as big striker Keith Kirwan was left all alone at the far post to head the equaliser and from that point on the Dubliners were the better side.

They started off the extra time in the ascendancy and enjoying all the momentum before striking for a good winning goal on 104 minutes. A strong bench allowed them to make some necessary changes and it was not a facility that was available to Athenry manager Gabriel Glavin.

With Gary Forde and Gary Delaney out through suspension following their sending off against OLBC in the previous round, and Seamie Crowe injured, it left their bench rather threadbare with just a number of young squad players available.

Playing with the aid of the slight incline and any wind advantage going, the home side had a Connor Cannon effort on target in the opening minute, while John Meleady was just over with a flick at the other end.

Meleady then tested Andrew Walsh who saved comfortably, before the goalkeeper pulled off a brilliant double save on 14 minutes.

Firstly he went full length to push away a Meleady shot and was then back on his feet to parry David Jackson’s close-range rebound.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.

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