Date Published: 05-May-2011
HURLING has been waiting over a decade for its next revolution after the sport’s traditional powers were seriously marginalised during the mid to late nineties. In the interim, the old order has been restored as Kilkenny, Cork and Tipperary have dominated the All-Ireland championship, sharing every title between them since 1998, but perhaps there is a new force about to shake things up this summer.
Already Dublin have created a huge stir by their relentless progress through the National League, culminating in their stunning final defeat of an admittedly injury-hit Kilkenny outfit at Croke Park last Sunday. They simply ran the Cats off their feet as the men in black and amber suffered their heaviest defeat under the marathon reign of Brian Cody. 12 points was the margin in the end as the Dubs’ potent brand of pace, power and teamwork propelled them to a first national title since 1939.
All over the field, the winners’ intensity, work ethic, savage tackling and quality hurling had Kilkenny players on the rack. Not even the concession of a relatively soft Eddie Brennan goal – incredibly, one of the team’s only two scores from play – knocked Anthony Daly’s men off their stride as they went on to establish a significant interval advantage of 0-10 to 1-2.
Wayward free-taking continued to undermine an undisciplined Kilkenny and though Michael Rice and TJ Reid shot early second-half points, they struggled to get any serious momentum going, with several of their team left toiling by Dublin’s strong running, especially from wing back Peter Kelly, midfielder Liam Rushe and excellent centre half forward Ryan O’Dwyer, in particular.
The manner in which Dublin closed out the match in the final ten minutes with a string of unanswered points was equally impressive. Conal Keaney thumped one over from way out the field against the wind, while corner forward Paul Ryan crowned a cracking performance with a glorious effort from off the hurley after twisting and turning his way into space.
Frankly, Kilkenny couldn’t keep up with their opponents and a bad day for them was made worse by the dismissal of Eoin Larkin in the 25th minute. Referee Michael Wadding had no choice and it’s almost certain that the book will also be thrown at defender John Dalton for his involvement in a nasty incident in the dying seconds of the opening-half. The Waterford referee had controversially blown the half-time whistle just before Conor McCormack had rattled the net, only for Dalton’s frustration to boil over moments later as he floored the Dublin scorer.
Another Kilkenny player, Richie Hogan, could also face disciplinary action after an elbow into the head of Joey Boland, ensuring that the vanquished have been labelled as ‘sore losers’ in the wake of Sunday’s league final defeat. It wasn’t just that they struggled with Dublin’s mobility, but many of their longer serving players clearly (and understandably) don’t have the hunger of old. Sure, the hoped-for return of John Tennyson, Henry Shefflin, Richie Power, Michael Fennelly and Tommy Walsh will lift them for the championship, while the squad’s pride has taken a mauling – but what have they got left in the locker?
The mood in Dublin will, in contrast, be much more positive ahead of the Leinster title race and the fact that they coped comfortably with the pressure and hype associated with a league final shows that they are mentally stronger too. Daly has done a fantastic job with them and many observers are now rating Dublin as the biggest threat to Tipperary over the months ahead. Sure, they have a classic banana skin fixture against Offaly at Croke Park coming up, but one anticipates that they will be well grounded for that one, never mind the surge of confidence the Dubs will have got from mauling the Cats.
Finally, it would be remiss not to pay tribute to Galway native Niall Corcoran for his role in Dublin’s resurgence. The Meelick/Eyrecourt man threw in his lot with them after failing to make the cut down here under Ger Loughnane and he hasn’t looked back since. Corcoran typified Dublin’s industry last Sunday with his accurate hand-passing a feature of his game as he repeatedly cleaned up at corner back. Definitely one who got away!
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.