Classifieds Advertise Archive Subscriptions Family Announcements Photos Digital Editions/Apps
Connect with us

Connacht Tribune

In-form Monivea scrum-half is expecting a full-bloodied clash against Munster

Stephen Glennon

Published

on

Connacht scrum half Caolin Blade scores his team's third try despite the best efforts of Ulster's Johnny McPhillips at the Sportsground on Friday night. Photo: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

CONNACHT will look to leapfrog Munster on the Conference ‘A’ league table when they host their southern rivals in the third and final instalment of their festive season interprovincial PRO14 derby fixtures at the Sportsground on Saturday (7:35pm).

A superb victory over Ulster had seen Connacht moved to second place on the table ahead of Munster – that was until Munster dished out a 26-17 defeat to reigning European champions Leinster 24 hours later to reclaim the position.

In other words, whichever side triumphs on Saturday will be in a strong position going forward and on the evidence of Connacht’s displays against Leinster and Ulster, there is certainly plenty of reasons to be optimistic.

This is not lost on scrum-half Caolin Blade, who acknowledges Connacht are in a good place. “Yeah, it is (a good place). Look, you definitely want to be up where you are and competing. It keeps up the spirits in the camp every week.

“We are still alive massively in the two competitions, the Challenge Cup and PRO14, so I just think it is about taking it game by game and taking it as small little blocks, like we are taking these three inter-pros, just trying to win them all really.”

One of the remarkable stats from this season so far is that Blade, be it starting or coming off the bench, is the only player in the westerners’ squad to be involved in all 16 of Connacht’s competitive fixtures.

“I am quite lucky,” he says. “I seem to be durable. I think though it is part luck and part hard work on my rehab and prehab. So, it is just recovering after every game that has allowed me to be up for selection every week. And thankfully I have got selected.”

No doubt, the Monivea man has thrived under new head coach Andy Friend, with Blade admitting Connacht’s style of play seems to be benefitting him greatly. “Massively. I think, definitely, the game up in Leinster, you learn more from those ones. As a game leader or a 9, that is one I would definitely take a lot of learnings from and it has improved me.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and  county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Connacht Tribune

Limited go-ahead for marts

Francis Farragher

Published

on

Marts: Individual sales to be allowed.

MART managers and staff across the county are busy this week preparing operating protocols for approval by the Dept. of Agriculture that will allow for the limited sale of livestock during the current COVID-19 emergency.

On Tuesday, the Dept. of Agriculture confirmed that they would be allowing marts to handle livestock sales in a limited way – marts will liaise with buyers and sellers; arrange for the weighing of the animals; and process payments.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the Minister for Agriculture, Michael Creed, said that the Dept. had issued guidance to marts for ‘a very limited range of essential services’ that would not require people to assemble: the transactions would include calf sales, the weighing of livestock, and an online or brokerage service.

Ray Doyle of ICOS (Irish Co-operative Organisation Society) this week thanked the Government for their announcement, adding that ‘it was reasonable’ for a form of trading to continue to alleviate the current economic burden on farmers.

He pointed out that only mart staff would handle the animals; the buyer and seller would not have contact with each other; each could observe the weighing data; the buyer could view the animals from a distance; the sale would be completed electronically; no visitors or members of the public would be admitted; full sanitisation protocols would be observed; with the sale to be completed electronically.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app

The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Continue Reading

Connacht Tribune

Self-isolation success staves off Covid-19 surge – for now

Dara Bradley

Published

on

Anaesthetic Registrar Dr Robbie Sparks with Clinical Facilitator Claire Lavelle simulating an intubation of a patient with COVID-19 in the ICU at UHG. (Photo supplied by UHG because of visitor restrictions)

The predicted surge in Covid19-related admissions to Galway’s hospitals has been delayed – for now – giving much-needed breathing space to ramp-up preparations and increase Intensive Care Unit (ICU) capacity and beds for when it does hit.

But hospital management remains concerned in particular with the ‘significant’ number of staff in the West who have been taken off the frontline because they are ill from coronavirus, or self-isolating as a precaution after coming in close contact with an infected person.

And as the latest figures show 86 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Galway – seven times the figure from a fortnight ago – the HSE has conceded that local testing for the virus was suspended Sunday due to a shortage of testing kits. Limited testing resumed on Wednesday.

Elsewhere, although hospital chiefs in the West insist they have sufficient levels of personal protective equipment (PPE), nursing homes across Galway are facing a shortage of basic equipment such as masks, and many have appealed to the public for donations.

Chief Clinical Director Saolta Group, and consultant cardiologist, Dr Pat Nash, said UHG, the main Covid-19 hospital in the West, has experienced increased activity but ‘not a huge surge in admissions’.

“The hospital still has significant capacity available both on wards and ICU,” he said.

But Dr Nash stressed there was no room for complacency and the public needed to continue to observe social distancing, stay at home and practice hand hygiene.

 

See full story – and 23 pages of coverage on the Covid-19 crisis in Galway – in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or available to buy as a digital edition via our website www.connachttribune.ie. The Tribune can also be ordered as part of your shopping delivery from most outlets now.

Continue Reading

Connacht Tribune

Loan sharks prey on families hit by pandemic

Denise McNamara

Published

on

Moneylenders have been targeting working class areas in Galway where hundreds of people have lost their jobs in the lockdown, encouraging them to take out loans with exorbitant interest rates.

Deputy for Galway East Sean Canny said he had received several reports of estates in the city where leaflets had been distributed recently by legitimate loan sharks.

“These people are licensed so they are not doing anything illegal but I do think it’s immoral in these times and my advice is to ignore money lenders,” he stressed.

“We have credit unions where people can go to for advice and for loans and we have MABS [Money Advice and Budgeting Service] which can provide advice that maybe they don’t need more money but may need to manage their budget better.

“People don’t make the best decisions when they’re stressed but I would really urge them not to go down this road because they can charge interest rates of 187% which is really fleecing people.”

Paul Bailey, Head of Communications at the Irish League of Credit Unions, said they have also been getting reports of leaflets being dropped by moneylenders in working class areas.

 

See full story – and 23 pages of coverage on the Covid-19 crisis in Galway – in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now, or available to buy as a digital edition via our website www.connachttribune.ie. The Tribune can also be ordered as part of your shopping delivery from most outlets now.

Continue Reading

Local Ads

Advertisement

Weather

Weather Icon
Advertisement

Facebook

Advertisement

Trending