Date Published: 14-Apr-2011
GALWAY City teenagers Jennifer Hegarty and Conor O’Shea will both hope to make their mark when they travel to take part in the European U-19 Squash Championships at Sport Park Pilatus Kriens in Lucerne, Switzerland this coming week.
Getting underway on Saturday – and running to Sunday, April 24 – the championships will host approximately 120 players from 20 countries across the continent. In the opening rounds, Hegarty will face Marina De Juan of Spain while O’Shea has been paired against Remo Handl of Switzerland.
No doubt, these are exciting times for the duo and, in particular for Hegarty, as she endeavours to juggle her squash and Leaving Cert. commitments.
Hegarty, though, will travel to Switzerland in high spirits, having defeated the equally promising Elaine Ware in the Irish U-19 squash decider, on a scoreline of 3-1, at her home club, Galway Lawn Tennis Club recently.
This was Hegarty’s first win over Carlow girl Ware and it couldn’t have come at a better time. “It should be good, but it is going to be tough,” says the Newcastle girl of the upcoming championships. “A lot of the other countries are better than Ireland, generally. Last year, we finished 13th, so hopefully we can break into the top 10 this year.”
With both individual and team events taking place in Lucerne, Hegarty – who also represented Ireland at the Europeans in Vienna, Austria last year and, previously, at the U-15 Home Internationals in Leeds three years ago – says it is imperative she performs to the best of her ability.
“I hope to go to the Worlds this year, and represent Ireland. Maybe next year, then, I would like to go on the pro circuit and see what it is like. The Worlds, though, are on in (Harvard University, Boston) America in July (20th to 30th) and there will be a team of five girls going to that.”
However, despite being the Irish U-19 champion, she says that still does not guarantee her seat to the United States. “You still have to earn the place because they (Squash Ireland) might, instead, bring the younger players to give them experience. So, I have to do well at the Europeans,” insists the 18-year-old Yeats College student, who hopes to study PE teaching at third level later in the year.
In addition to the coaching she has received from GLTC’s Edwin Brennan and David Noone, Hegarty has also received advice from top class squash players, John Rooney and Arthur Gaskin.
“Yeah, I got some coaching off John a few times. It was really good and I learned some new things,” she says. “I also got some coaching from Arthur Gaskin, who is now the Irish No. 1. That was really, really good.”
Daughter of former Ireland tennis player Donal and Martina Hegarty, the multi-talented teenager has also played Gaelic football with St. Michael’s, hockey with Galway Hockey Club and soccer with Salthill Devon.
That said, her sporting priority these days is squash and when she travels to the championships, alongside Conor Lavin, Michael Stewart, Ware and, of course, O’Shea – who was on the Irish boy’s team that took part in the World Junior Championships in Ecuador last year – Hegarty will be hoping that both she and Ireland can improve on previous showings.
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.