Date Published: 12-May-2011
GALWAY senior hurlers – who are due to begin their Leinster championship campaign in just over three weeks’ time – have suffered a setback following the withdrawals of Craughwell sharpshooter Niall Healy and Kiltormer’s Keith Kilkenny from the inter-county panel during the week.
While Kilkenny, who was called up to the squad last winter, had yet to establish himself in the starting fifteen, 26-year-old Healy had been a near-constant for Galway since making his debut against Laois in 2005.
Indeed, Healy enjoyed his greatest hour during that heady championship of ‘05 when he tallied a magnificent hat-trick of goals against Kilkenny in the Tribesmen’s pulsating 5-18 to 4-18 victory over Kilkenny in the All-Ireland semi-final.
Although Galway subsequently lost the All-Ireland final to Cork on a scoreline of 1-21 to 1-16, with the Craughwell man substituted midway through the second half, Healy finished the 2005 championship campaign with a total of 4-4, a creditable tally in his debut season.
To ease the pain of that All-Ireland defeat, however, Healy – a younger brother of former Galway midfielder Fergal – was very much to the fore when Galway defeated Cork and Kilkenny in the All-Ireland semi-final and final respectively in the All-Ireland U-21 championship.
Interestingly, of that All-Ireland winning side, just five are now involved in the inter-county senior set-up, namely David Collins, Aonghus Callanan, Eanna Ryan, Joe Gantley and the recently recalled Kerril Wade. In contrast, no less than 10 of that U-21 Kilkenny have gone on to claim All-Ireland senior titles. Those include John Tennyson, PJ Delaney, James ‘Cha’ Fitzpatrick, Richie Power and Eoin Larkin
In any event, Healy’s withdrawal from the Galway senior set-up is a significant blow to manager John McIntyre and his backroom team. “Niall Healy contacted me as we were returning to training on Monday night and expressed his desire to pull out of the panel,” explained the Galway boss.
“Niall felt he had no longer the passion or the hunger to play inter-county hurling and he was enjoying his time back playing with Craughwell. I asked him to reconsider – that I would give him the time to do so – because it was such a big call, but Niall was firm in his decision.
“Keith Kilkenny pulled out during Tuesday night’s training session. He had just got frustrated with the way things were going for him. He felt there was a gap (to inter-county) that he was struggling to bridge. He had given it everything and he just felt he lacked the pace for inter-county hurling. I admired his honesty and, like Niall, we are sorry to see him go.”
The withdrawal of Healy and Kilkenny comes in the aftermath of five players being released from the Galway squad – namely David Hayes (Kiltormer), John Grealish (Athenry), Brian Murphy (Turloughmore), Joseph Cooney (Sarsfields) and Niall Cahalan (Mullagh) – although the management have since done a U-turn and recalled Cahalan.
“Obviously, we had to make some tough calls when reviewing the squad, but the door is not closed on any player as the Niall Cahalan situation showed,” said McIntyre. “It was a marginal call to initially release Niall, but he responded in eye catching manner by scoring six points from play for Mullagh in the senior hurling championship last weekend.”
There have also been recalls for Sarsfields Kerril Wade, Cappataggle goalkeeper James Skehill and 34-year-old Alan Kerins, who was in sparkling form for Clarinbridge during their successful All-Ireland club campaign, while St. Thomas’ James Regan – impressive against Dublin in last year’s U-21 All-Ireland semi-final win – has also been promoted.
For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.
Galway ‘Park and Ride’ could become permanent
Date Published: 07-May-2013
A park ‘n’ ride scheme from Carnmore into Galway city could become a permanent service if there is public demand.
That’s according to the Chief Executive of Galway Chamber of Commerce, Michael Coyle.
The pilot scheme will begin at 7.20 next Monday morning, May 13th.
Motorists will be able to park cars at the airport carpark in Carnmore and avail of a bus transfer to Forster Street in the city.
Buses will depart every 20 minutes at peak times and every 30 minutes at offpeak times throughout the day, at a cost of 2 euro per journey.
Tuam awaits UK hay import as overnight rainfall adds to fodder crisis
Date Published: 09-May-2013
Tuam is now awaiting a third import of hay from the UK as overnight rainfall has increased pressure on farmers struggling to source fodder.
A total of ten loads are expected at Connacht Gold stores throughout the West with a load expected at the Airglooney outlet this evening or tomorrow.
Farmers throughout the county have been struggling to cope with the animal feed shortage and a below than normal grass growth due to unseasonal weather conditions.
Overnight rainfall in the Galway area has also added to the problem making ground conditions in many areas are quite poor.
Joe Waldron, Agricultual Advisor with Connacht Gold says farmers in short supply can contact the Airglooney outlet on 093 – 24101.
Transport Minister urges end to Bus Eireann strike action
Date Published: 12-May-2013
The Transport Minister is urging drivers at Bus Éireann to engage in talks with management, in an effort to bring their strike action to an end.
There were no Bus Éireann services operating out of Galway today as a result of nationwide strike action by staff affiliated with the national bus and rail union.
Up to 20 Bus Éireann drivers are continuing to picket outside the bus depot at the docks in the city this evening.
Drivers from other unions have decided not to cross the picket line and go into work today – causing the disruption to be even worse.
Bus drivers are protesting against five million euro worth of cuts to their overtime and premium pay – cuts which Bus Eireann says are vital to ensure the future viability of the company.
The majority of services nationwide are disrupted, and the union say strike action will continue until management are willing to go back into negotiations.
However, it’s not expected to affect school services next week.
Galway bay fm news understands that around 70 percent, or over 100 Galway bus Eireann drivers are affiliated with the NBRU.