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Bonus point win is not enough for in-form Corinthians



Date Published: {J}

Rob Murphy

CORINTHIANS rounded off their campaign with a 27-10 victory away to Thomond in their final Division 2 game of the season, securing a bonus point in the process.

However, the result wasn’t enough to allow them to sneak into an Ulster Bank League Division 2 play-off with Bruff as Bective Rangers held their nerve to secure a tense 19-15 away win at Clonakilty.

The Galway men knew from the outset that a bonus point victory was vital and an early Aaron Conneely try, after a quick tap penalty from fellow Irish under 21 star Mark Dolan, set them on the way.

Conor Murphy scored try number two after a quick turnover from Denis Buckley and some good awareness from Mark Dolan before Wayne Williams scored try number three just before half time. A penalty from Murphy and a drop goal from Diarmuid Waters left it at 20-3 at half time.

Thomond scored early in the second half through Dave Foley but Corinthians finished strong with Conor Murphy getting his second try after a Conneely break and some more good work from Buckley.

The win wasn’t enough for Sean Deignan and Paul Flanagan’s side to secure a play of place, but they can take pride in a great finish to the campaign and with such a promising young side, the future looks bright for Corinthians.

Connemara finished their campaign with another defeat to bring up the rear in Division 3, the decision to focus on developing a young squad meant they were always going to be in the lower half, but narrow defeats to Navan and Ards were particularly frustrating for them as they were worthy of a few points during the campaign.

The focus now is on securing their AIL status next season when relegation to the junior ranks will be re-introduced. While the squad will be a year older and wiser, there is little doubt that they will need to strengthen in some key areas if they are to ensure that they don’t end up in a relegation battle.

The Ulster Bank League will have a new look to it next season, with Division 1a and 1b increasing to ten teams each. Buccaneers failed to gain promotion to the top tier losing 23-9 to Garryowen in Saturday’s promotion/relegation play off in Dooradoyle, their poor run of form since Christmas proved costly.

Buccaneers will remain in Division 1b next season along with Galwegians. Corinthians will be in a new look 16 team Division 2a and will be one of the early favorites for the title having finished sixth this season. The top four were promoted and fifth place Bective play off with Division 1b bottom side Bruff this weekend.

Last year’s two promoted Junior clubs topped the Division 3 table and are a clear sign of the strength in junior rugby across the country. Seapoint and City of Derry will be major challengers in Division 2a next season.

The fourth tier next year will now be called Division 2b and will house two Connacht teams with Sligo joining the All Ireland League ranks for the first time since the mid 1990s. In a once off exception, all four provincial league champions have been promoted so Armagh, Cashel and Boyne also join the 16 team division.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

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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