Date Published: 22-Mar-2011
THERE were only 27 minutes gone in the All-Ireland Club hurling final at Croke Park last Thursday, but the situation was already grim for Clarinbridge. Trailing by 0-9 to 0-4 and with opponents O’Loughlin Gaels dictating the trend of the exchanges, the Galway champions badly needed to get some foothold on the match before it was too late. Incredibly, by half-time, they had done much more than just that – they managed to retire on level terms.
It represented some turnaround in the space of little more than six minutes and though the concluding action of the opening-half was out of quilter with what had gone before, Clarinbridge had not only resurrected their prospects of winning an historic All-Ireland title but, at the same time, had seriously deflated their Kilkenny rivals who for all their dominance were back to square one at the interval.
O’Loughlin Gaels had to start all over again and the mood in their dressing room during half-time couldn’t have been positive – all that hurling and still only drawing the match. Their collective spirit had taken a hit and you almost see the energy and confidence draining from them soon after the resumption. Untypically of a modern-day Kilkenny outfit, they faded tamely away and could only manage two pointed frees for their troubles in the second-half.
In contrast, the Clarinbridge players had returned to the battleground with a spring in their step. From five points down, their defence under pressure and the forwards living off scraps, they were right back in the contest and, to the Galway champions’ credit, the men in maroon didn’t let the opportunity pass them by in the second-half as they hurled O’Loughlins off the park in becoming the sixth club from the county to lift the Tommy Moore Cup.
Sure, they had ridden their luck along the way, but the ’Bridge made the most of the odd break here and there to eke out the necessary improvement from being lucky to emerge from their group in Galway to being crowned the best club team in the land in the space of a few months. That’s some achievement by any standards for a club whose combination hurling has always been pleasing on the eye.
Similar to the situation in that epic All-Ireland semi-final against De La Salle, Clarinbridge were also off the pace and struggling badly in the opening quarter at Croke Park. With O’Loughlins’ Mark Bergin causing serious damage on the forty from where he landed four quality points from play in the opening 17 minutes, the Leinster title holders were by far the more convincing outfit with Daniel Loughnane and Alan Geoghegan also paying their way up front.
Clarinbridge were being largely restricted to sporadic attacks and though those forays helped yield points from the lively Eoin Forde, Mark Kerins, Paul Coen and raiding wing back Jamie Cannon in the opening 26 minutes, they had been playing catch up for much of the first-half and were coming off second best in most of the key duels around the field. Approaching the break, however, the game underwent a dramatic transformation.
After Alan Kerins, already benefitting from his switch out the field, and Forde had hit the target, Clarinbridge struck for the most timely goal possible as Mark Kerins, now at full forward, threaded a close range ground stroke to the corner of the O’Loughlins’ net in injury time. Kerins then had a rasping drive from his penalty effort deflected over the bar and, suddenly, the ‘Bridge were level.
While the conclusion to the opening-half clearly knocked the heart of the Kilkenny champions, by the same token it liberated Clarinbridge from the pressures of big-day hurling. They re-emerged for the second-half with a new-found belief and assurance as they proceeded to produce a magnificent 30 minutes of textbook play which left O’Loughlins chasing shadows. It was mostly one-way traffic as Micheal Donoghue’s charges outscored their demoralised opponents by 1-11 by 0-2.
For more, read this week’s Connacht 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.