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Connacht Tribune

Hurlers get past potential banana skin of Carlow but plenty of work to do

Stephen Glennon

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Galway's Gearoid McInerney is tackled by Carlow's Chris Nolan in Pearse Stadium last weekend. Photos: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

Galway 1-24

Carlow 1-18

This may be a game that will live long in the minds of Carlow supporters. For everyone else, most notably the Galway camp, this unremarkable opening round Leinster senior hurling championship fixture at Pearse Stadium on Sunday will not.

Yes, Galway got the job done against a Carlow outfit that continues to defy the odds with their gritty displays, but this performance from Micheal Donoghue’s men fell short of what the Tribesmen have produced in the championship in recent seasons.

It would not have been good enough to beat Wexford or Kilkenny and, possibly, Dublin; on the other hand, one suspects the Tribesmen may have come in a different state of mind had they been playing one of the traditional forces.

At any rate, the Galway management was disappointed with the performance levels and they had every right to be. Too often, the quality of Galway play was sloppy; distribution left a lot to be desired at times while the volume of basic handling errors was too high to be forgivable.

What accentuated these mistakes was that there were other occasions when Galway were bang on their game, no more so than when Conor Cooney goaled just 17 seconds into the second period. From the throw-in, Galway seized possession before Jason Flynn and captain David Burke set up Cooney for an outstanding goal. It was incisive, sharp, and clinical. It was Galway at their best.

That score made it 1-14 to 0-8 and the expectancy around the ground was that the home side would kick on from there. They did not. Instead, Carlow hit them for 1-2 without reply; the outstanding Martin Kavanagh (free) and midfielder Jack Kavanagh tallying the points, and corner forward Chris Nolan pouncing for the goal.

The Carlow goal arrived just two and a half minutes after Galway had bagged their goal. The industrious Davy Glennon gave away an innocuous free deep in the Carlow half and from the subsequent delivery of the placed ball, Kavanagh won possession and set up Nolan for a cool finish.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Compliant Galwegians are keeping their distance

Francis Farragher

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Checkpoint...Garda warning for those who stray too far from home.

BOY racers, cyclists, gym users and young people attending house parties are among those in Galway who have been issued with Fixed Payment Notices (FPNs) for breaching the Covid-19 travel regulations over the past week.

However, Gardaí in Galway have reported ‘a very high-level of compliance’ from the general public as regards the travel restrictions that are a central part of the Level-5 ‘Stay Home – Stay Safe’ Covid campaign.

Over the weekend, Gardaí issued FPNs to so-called ‘boy racers’ in two separate cases on the Tuam Road outside Galway city and in the Craughwell area.

FPNs – involving a €100 on-the-spot fine – were also issued last week to a number of young people attending house parties in the Galway city area, after Gardaí had been called to the scene.

Two cyclists stopped in the Cornamona area of North Connemara last week, who were 19 kilometres from their homes – and outside their own county boundary – also faced Garda censure.

The cyclists weren’t from the same household; they weren’t wearing masks; and also, were in breach of social distancing regulations.

Gardaí also came across a case of a gym in South Galway being used by a number of people last week – also a breach of the Covid-19, Level-5 restrictions.

While Gardaí also received a number of calls about possible ‘pub-opening’ violations, on investigation, they found no sign of activity on the premises they checked out.

Galway Chief Garda Superintendent, Tom Curley, told the Connacht Tribune that overall, there was ‘a very high level of compliance’ as regards the travel restrictions which was ‘very encouraging’.

See full story – and comprehensive Covid-19 coverage – in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. Or you can download our digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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Connacht Tribune

Lessons learned on home-schooling

Denise McNamara

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Cathal Moore, principal of the Presentation Athenry.

Home-schooling is working better this time round with many teachers conducting live classes and more students actively engaging than when schools closed suddenly last March.

But virtual education is a poor substitute for the experience of the classroom with students sorely missing social interaction, according to teachers, while parents are still struggling to balance working from home with ensuring their children keep up with the school work.

The sooner that schools can reopen safely the better for everyone – although most agree that it’s looking more likely to be after mid-term than at the beginning of February.

“Everybody is in a better place this time round – schools, teachers, parents and students. Everybody expected to be back at school. It’s no secret last time we got two hours’ notice but this time round we’re better prepared,” remarks the principal of the Presentation Athenry, Cathal Moore.

The mixed secondary school is doing a mix of live and recorded classes as not every student has good broadband.

After the first week, there was feedback from students that they felt there was too much homework in addition to the virtual classes while teachers reported that they would prefer more live communication from their charges.

“It is more tiring – fatigue is definitely a factor when on a screen all day and if this goes on for a prolonged amount of time it will creep in for a growing number of students.”

Read the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. Or you can download our digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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Connacht Tribune

Hard-pressed hospitals down 450 staff over Covid

Dara Bradley

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More than 450 staff – including nurses at UHG and Portiuncula – are now out of work due to Covid, as staff shortages threaten the public hospitals’ ability to cope with the crisis.

The upsurge has seen UHG deal with a record number of Covid-19 patients, and the hospital had to escalate its surge capacity plan and add extra beds in ICU.

The latest CSO figures reveal that the first week of the New Year was Galway’s deadliest yet on the pandemic front, with five lives lost over those opening seven days of 2021.

That brought the total number of virus fatalities in Galway to 25, and it’s understood there have been further deaths locally since then, which will be confirmed later.

From March to the end of November there were 20 deaths notified in Galway, and no further deaths were recorded in all of December.

News of Galway’s deadliest week comes as local leaders in the HSE, Garda, and local government joined forces to warn that Covid-19 was still spreading rapidly in the community.

Nationally, between January 5 and 18, there were 263 Covid-19 deaths recorded, according to the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HSPC), which does not give a geographical breakdown. Of these deaths, 119 were hospitalised and 14 had been admitted to ICU.

The median age of all of Galway’s Covid fatalities is 83; the median age of the confirmed cases in Galway is 31 – the lowest of 26 counties.

See full story – and comprehensive Covid-19 coverage – in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. Or you can download our digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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