Inside Track with John McIntyre
DEPARTING Kenny Park last Sunday after two riveting senior hurling semi-finals, the over-riding emotion was sympathy for the gallant players of Cappataggle. For the second year running, they have now fallen at the penultimate stage of the championship by the narrowest of heartbreaking margins.
The Cappataggle camp will be understandably aggrieved that they weren’t awarded a free from their last assault on the Liam Mellows posts in a frantic finish which saw the champions admirably hold their nerve, with Tadhg Haran emerging as the hero of the hour with a terrific matchwinner from out the field.
There were a couple of periods during the game when Mellows threatened to pull away, but Cappataggle would simply not surrender. Armed with a huge spirit, they chased lost causes, threw themselves into tackles and inspired by a terrific display from corner forward Jarlath Mannion, had the title holders on the rack near the end.
Despite losing the long-serving Damien Joyce to injury before the break and James Skehill’s powerfully hit penalty thwarted by a fine save from his Mellows’ opposite number, Kenneth Walsh, Cappataggle’s resolve never faltered. James Garvey and Paul Claffey were strong influences in the heart of the defence while the likes of James Egan typified their work-rate.
The introduction of Darragh Dolan also gave them huge impetus as he rattled over three points as Mellows were repeatedly exposed down their left flank. With Mannion also firing over some great scores, it left Cappataggle standing on the brink of a famous breakthrough – a first senior hurling final appearance.
They were 18 points to 17 behind in the 57th minute, but Cappataggle threw everything at the title holders in the subsequent action. They virtually laid siege on the Mellows danger area and two points from Dolan had pushed them in front heading into the dying embers of a mighty contest. It ought to have been better – Skehill and Dan Nevin drove long-range frees wide, while substitute Michael Garvey spurned a decent opportunity after an opposition puck-out went astray.
For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.
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€46,000 Lotto winner comes forward as deadline looms
Galway Bay fm newsroom – The Knocknacarra winner of the Lotto Match 5 + Bonus from the 12th of December has come forward to claim their prize, just two weeks before the claim deadline.
The winning ticket, which is worth €46,234, was sold at Clybaun Stores on the Clybaun Road on the day of the draw, one of two winners of the Lotto Match 5 + Bonus prize of €92,000.
A spokesperson for the National Lottery say we are now making arrangements for the lucky winner to make their claim in the coming days.
Meanwhile, the Lotto jackpot for tomorrow night (27th February) will roll to an estimated €5.5 million.
Voice of ‘Big O’ reflects on four decades
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – The daytime voice of Big O Taxis is celebrating four decades in the role – and she has no plans to hang up her headset any time soon.
Roisin Freeney decided to seek a job after staying at home to mind her three children for over a decade. It was 1981 when she saw an advert in the Connacht Sentinel for a dispatch operator.
The native of Derry recalls that the queue for the job wound its way past Monroe’s Tavern from the taxi office on Dominick Street.
“There was a great shortage of work back then. I nearly had a heart attack when I saw the line of people. My then husband who was giving me a lift in never thought I’d get the job, he was driving on past and I said, let me off.
“I got it because I worked as a telephonist in the telephone exchange in Derry. But I was terrified starting off because I hadn’t been in the work system for so long.”
Back then Big O Taxis had only 25 drivers and just a single line for the public to book a cab.
“We had an old two-way radio, you had to speak to the driver and everybody could listen in. It was easy to leave the button pressed when it shouldn’t be pressed. People heard things they shouldn’t have – that’s for sure,” laughs Roisin.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of Róisín’s story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.
Baby boom puts strain on Galway City secondary schools
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – A baby boom in the late 2000s has left parents of sixth class pupils in Galway City scrambling to find a secondary school place for their children next September – with over 100 children currently facing the prospect of rejection from city schools.
The Department of Education is now rushing to address the issue and confirmed to the Galway City Tribune this week that it was fully aware of increasing pressure and demand on city schools
Local councillor Martina O’Connor said there were 100 more children more than there were secondary school places for next year, and warned that this would put severe pressure on schools to increase their intake numbers.
“This will put a lot of pressure on schools because they will have been working out the number of teachers and what resources they would need in October or November last year and they could be facing a situation where they will be asked to take an additional eight or 10 students.
“There would normally be a small excess – maybe two or three – but this year, it’s over 100. There is a bigger number of children in sixth class this year and there will be the same issue for the next few years,” said the Green Party councillor.
A Department spokesperson said while there were capacity issues, factors other than numbers could be at play, adding that there were approximately 1,245 children in the city due to move onto secondary school in September.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read the rest of the story, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.