Date Published: 02-Jun-2010
LED by a fantastic display from Cormac Bane, Caherlistrane were deserving winners of their Claregalway Hotel Galway Senior Football Championship backdoor match on Sunday despite having to save a penalty late in the second half to do so.
While An Cheathrú Rua held the majority of possession, they were unable to capitalise and give enough quality ball into a full forward line that looked dangerous anytime it was given a chance.
The match was won and lost in the contrasting fortunes of the team’s half forward lines.
For Caherlistrane, Bane put on master class display in linking defence and attack while taking scores himself when called upon.
An Cheathrú Rua’s half forward line on the other side were non-existent and it was left up to an industrious midfield and half back line to supply the final ball that, all too often, was lacking in precision.
The game began somewhat tentatively and despite an early score from Caherlistrane’s Shane Bohan after a 30 yard solo run, it took time to settle down as both teams played with the nerves natural to a knockout championship encounter.
Caherlistrane were quicker to breaking ball during the fractured first quarter of the match and found themselves leading 0-5 to 0-1, taking some opportunistic scores, the pick of which was a fine effort by J.J Greaney in the 12th minute.
An Cheathrú Rua continued to struggle to find that all important final ball despite winning their share of possession, epitomised best when Micheál Ó Briain soared above his man to field a kick out only to land the pass twenty metres into the terraces.
Not to be disheartened, they continued to work tirelessly, particularly when tackling defenders in possession with Shane Ó Súilleabháin at corner forward covering every blade of grass possible.
That effort paid off in the 22nd minute when Tomas Monahan lazily kicked a free back across his own 21 which was intercepted brilliantly by Ciarán de Paor who instantly found his brother Cillín in support. After a quick hand pass exchange between the two, which stranded Philip Skelly in the Caherlistrane goal, Cillín buried the ball in the back of an open net and the match suddenly jumped into life.
An Cheathrú Rua started to play much better after the goal and began to get some purchase out of the Caherlistrane defence whenever they could isolate them one on one. However, Bane and Greaney stepped up for the north Galway outfit and played patient football keeping possession well to stem the momentum building, helping their side to maintain their advantage and enter the break leading 0-7 to 1-2.
The pace of the contest increased significantly in the second half as An Cheathrú Rua threw everything into a last effort to stay in the championship. The de Paor brothers in particular sparkled into form and after a well worked point by Barry McCabe for Caherlistrane, Cillín and Ciarán de Paor combined for three points in the space of five minutes to level proceedings at 1-5 to 0-8 points ten minutes into the second half.
Despite Bane and Greaney once again combining to restore Caherlistrane’s two point lead, the men from the Gaeltacht were beginning to dominate possession. Ciarán Ó Cualáin was particularly impressive at midfield alongside his partner Micheál Ó Briain whose delivery into the full-forward line improved as the match progressed.
It was during this stretch of dominance that Gearóid Ó Conghaile was hauled down in the small rectangle after picking up a dropped ball by Brendan Murphy while attempting to come out of defence. Shane Ó Súilleabháín, who had been fantastic for An Cheathrú Rua all through, failed to connect as he would have wished, sending a weak shot to the bottom left corner which was easily stopped by Skelly in the Caherlistrane goal.
Shortly afterwards, Ó Cualáin missed another golden opportunity from five yards out after fielding a ball sent in by Ciarán de Paor. Despite the two misses, the momentum was with An Cheathrú Rua who levelled up the scoreline with two Ciarán de Paor points, the second coming with five minutes to play.
From there until the end, however, it was the Cormac Bane show. First he set up Eric Monahan for the lead point before kicking over two further points in the last three minutes to seal the win for Caherlistrane.
An Cheathrú Rua had calls for a foot block late into injury time in front of their goal, but it was waved away and they never came any closer than that to getting the second goal they needed
The way we were – Protecting archives of our past
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
Henshaw and McSharry set to field for Irish Wolfhounds in clash with England Saxons
Date Published: 24-Jan-2013
CONNACHT’S rising stars Robbie Henshaw and Dave McSharry look set to named in the starting xv for the Ireland Wolfhounds who face the England Saxons in Galway this weekend when the team is announced later today (Thursday).
Robbie Henshaw is the only out-and-out full-back that was named Tuesday in the 23-man squad that will take on the English at the Sportsground this Friday (7.45pm).
Connacht’s centre McSharry and Ulster’s Darren Cave are the only two specialist centres named in the 23 man squad, which would also suggest the two youngsters are in line for a starting place.
Former Connacht out-half, Ian Keatley, Leinster’s second out-half Ian Madigan and Ulster’s number 10 Paddy Jackson and winger Andrew Trimble, although not specialist full-backs or centres, can all slot into the 12, 13 and 15 jerseys, however you’d expect the Irish management will hand debuts to Henshaw and McSharry given that they’ll be playing on their home turf.
Aged 19, Henshaw was still playing Schools Cup rugby last season. The Athlone born Connacht Academy back burst onto the scene at the beginning of the season when he filled the number 15 position for injured captain Gavin Duffy.
The Marist College and former Ireland U19 representative was so assured under the high ball, so impressive on the counter-attack and astute with the boot, that he retained the full-back position when Duffy returned from injury.
Connacht coach Eric Elwood should be commended for giving the young Buccaneers clubman a chance to shine and Henshaw has grasped that opportunity with both hands, lighting up the RaboDirect PRO 12 and Heineken Cup campaigns for the Westerners this season.
Henshaw has played in all 19 of Connacht’s games this season and his man-of-the-match display last weekend in the Heineken Cup against Zebre caught the eye of Irish attack coach, Les Kiss.
“We’re really excited about his development. He had to step into the breach when Connacht lost Gavin Duffy, and he was playing 13 earlier in the year. When he had to put his hand up for that, he’s done an exceptional job,” Kiss said.
The 22-year-old McSharry was desperately unlucky to miss out on Declan Kidney’s Ireland squad for the autumn internationals and the Dubliner will relish the opportunity this Friday night to show-off his speed, turn of foot, deft hands and finishing prowess that has been a mark of this season, in particular, with Connacht.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.
Drinks battle brewing as kettle sales go off the boil
Date Published: 30-Jan-2013
You’d have thought there might have been three certainties in Irish life – death, taxes and the cup of tea – but it now seems that our post-tiger sophistication in endangering the consumption of the nation’s second favourite beverage.
Because with all of our new-fangled coffee machines, percolators, cappuccino and expresso makers, sales of the humble kettle are falling faster than our hopes of a write-off on the promissory note.
And even when we do make tea, we don’t need a tea pot – it’s all tea bags these days because nobody wants a mouthful of tea leaves, unless they’re planning to have their fortune told.
Sales of kettles are in decline as consumers opt for fancy coffee makers, hot water dispensers and other methods to make their beverages – at least that’s the case in the UK and there’s no reason to think it’s any different here.
And it’s only seems like yesterday when, if the hearth was the heart of every home, the kettle that hung over the inglenook fireplace or whistled gently on the range, was the soul.
You’d see groups gathered in bogs, footing turf and then breaking off to boil the battered old kettle for a well-earned break.
The first thing that happened when you dropped into someone’s home was the host saying: “Hold on until I stick on the kettle.”
When the prodigal son arrived home for the Christmas, first item on the agenda was a cup of tea; when bad news was delivered, the pain was eased with a cuppa; last thing at night was tea with a biscuit.
The arrival of electric kettles meant there was no longer an eternal search for matches to light the gas; we even had little electric coils that would boil water into tea in our cup if you were mean enough or unlucky enough to be making tea for one.
We went away on sun holidays, armed with an ocean of lotion and a suitcase full of Denny’s sausages and Barry’s Tea. Spanish tea just wasn’t the same and there was nothing like a nice brew to lift the sagging spirits.
We even coped with the arrival of coffee because for a long time it was just Maxwell House or Nescafe granules which might have seemed like the height of sophistication – but they still required a kettle.
For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.