Soccer Wrap with Mike Rafferty
Recent seasons have proved to be somewhat of a struggle for Hibernians, but despite regular positioning in the lower regions of the Premier Division, they have always survived and in the current campaign with four teams to be relegated from the 12-team league, matters look like they will be very competitive for a number of teams to avoid the drop.
Just about six weeks into the new season, just four points separate the nine teams outside the top three and indeed just one point separates the bottom seven sides.
The action is competitive and indeed three of those lower positioned teams fashioned a first league win of the campaign over the weekend, with Hibernians the most impressive with a 5-0 success over Corrib Rangers.
Dean Cullinane, Shane Walsh, Jason McPhilbin, Jason McDonagh (pen) and Alex Murphy with his first senior goal all found the range for the Bohermore side on Sunday morning.
Maree/Oranmore were also convincing winners with a 3-0 away success over Tuam Celtic as Luke Smyth, Andrew Connolly and Pricewell Diala all found the range for the visitors.
Kerill Hardiman and Ryan Noone got the goals as Colemanstown United also fashioned a first win with a 2-1 success over a Corrib Celtic side for whom Shane Concannon got their lone reply.
Even at this early stage of the season, the challenge for Premier Division title looks to lie between three sides as Mervue United, Athenry and Salthill Devon appear to be the likely contenders.
Mervue United were making it five wins on the trot as they maintained their top position with a 5-2 win over Loughrea at Fahy’s Field. As ever, leading scorer Enda Curran found the range with a brace, as Jonathan Hannifin, Hakeem Ryan and Aaron Molloy also hit the target in a convincing success. Kieran Bane was on the mark with both goals for the visitors.
For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.
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Salthill will NOT have one-way traffic under new cycleway plans
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – Salthill will not be reduced to one-way traffic under plans for the new cycleway along the Promenade, following the intervention of the National Transport Authority in the controversy.
It was confirmed yesterday (Thursday) that a design is now being considered to “ensure the widest support possible”.
Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council – which recently created cycleways in Dublin – will now be involved in the design process.
Last September, city councillors voted in favour of creating a two-way segregated cycle lane along the coastal side of the Prom from Grattan Road to Blackrock as a six-month trial.
However, it subsequently emerged that this would involve introducing one-way traffic along the Prom, with the outbound lane closed to make way for bicycles – this information has not been presented to councillors as they decided to vote on the cycle lane without any prior discussion.
Galway West TD and Minister of State at the Department of Transport, Hildegarde Naughton, subsequently asked the National Transport Authority (NTA) to intervene in the row.
“As a result of a meeting held last week between the NTA and the City Council, I can confirm that both parties are working to review proposals that will meet the objectives of the [City Council] motion while also looking to retain two-way traffic,” she said.
Criminal Assets Bureau targets two Galway families
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – Garda raids at seven locations on the east side of the city earlier this week were aimed at ‘hitting in the pocket’ two families alleged to be heavily involved in the drugs trade, the Galway City Tribune has learned.
Close to 100 personnel from different Garda and Customs specialist units were involved in the searches of residences in the Castle Park and Radharc na Gréine estates early on Tuesday morning.
According to Garda sources, they are confident that the raids – which also involved the seizure of a 191 Audi car worth an estimated €45,000+ in the Garryowen area of Limerick – will lead to arrests over the coming weeks and months.
Files have already started to be prepared for forwarding to the DPP (Director of Public Prosecutions) in relation to the seizures on Tuesday which included €22,000 in cash; £4,450 in sterling; a range of high-value designer goods, as well as the freezing of €17,000 in a bank account.
Searches carried out prior to this week’s operation by specialist Garda units had resulted in the seizure of €18,680 in cash and the freezing of bank accounts to the value of €66,000. Two Rolex watches were also seized – these items have a value which can range between €10,000 and €100,000 each.
The strategy behind the CAB/Garda crackdown on illegal drugs gangs is based on striking at the finances of the local drug barons – as well as the seizure of cash/goods and the freezing of bank accounts, Revenue are closely involved in the ‘monitoring of income’ of the gang members with a view to issuing substantial tax bills.
Detective Superintendent Shane Cummins, who is in charge of crime operations in the Galway Garda Division, said this week’s searches were part of an ongoing operation aimed at tackling the sale and supply of illegal drugs across the city and county.
This is a shortened preview version of this article. To read more on the raids and Garda Asset Profilers, see this week’s Galway City Tribune. You can buy a digital edition HERE.
Cyberattack leaves HSE in the dark on children’s mental health in Galway
From this week’s Galway City Tribune – The full extent of the waiting list for community mental health services for children is unknown because of the cyberattack on the HSE.
There were 48 young people in Galway, Mayo and Roscommon on a waiting list last March for the community Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), according to the HSE.
Most of them were waiting less than 12 weeks, and seven of them were waiting between 12 and 26 weeks.
This is relatively good compared to other Community Healthcare Organisations in other parts of the country – the West made up just 2% of the 2,384 children nationally who were waiting for CAMHS referrals.
But the HSE has conceded that the data is not up to date – and so the full extent of waiting list in the West is not known.
“As a result of the recent cyberattack on HSE systems, the latest set of full data for the number of children waiting to be seen by CAMHS is from March 2021,” said Jim Ryan, Assistant National Director of the National Mental Health Services.
Mr Ryan was responding to a Parliamentary Question submitted by Galway West TD, Noel Grealish (Ind) and supplied to the Galway City Tribune.
He said that CAMHS provides specialist mental health care to children aged up to 18, “who have met the threshold for a diagnosis of moderate to severe mental health disorder that requires the input of a multi-disciplinary mental health teams”.
(Photo: The CAMHS unit at Merlin Park)