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Joyce fit to play in league tie against Kerry



Date Published: {J}

Dara Bradley

IT just keeps getting easier, doesn’t it? Fresh from an away defeat to the Munster champions, Cork, the Galway senior football team have the unenviable task of welcoming reigning All-Ireland and National Football League title holders Kerry, to Pearse Stadium on Sunday (2.30pm).

With two points from a possible six, pressure is beginning to mount on Galway who probably need at least another four points from the possible eight in the remaining four fixtures – and the injury casualties are beginning to stack up, too.

Galway manager Joe Kernan has confirmed that Sean Armstrong will be out of action for at least a month and will miss the remainder of the league after pulling his hamstring early on at Páirc Uí Rinn.

In addition to Armstrong, who captained the Tribesmen last weekend, there are six other players who are definitely ruled-out with injury. Gareth Bradshaw was in the programme to start against Cork but didn’t play due to a calf injury and is likely to be sidelined for a couple of weeks.

Leitir Mór’s Éoin Ó Conghaile is almost certain to start between the posts again as Galway’s two goalkeepers Paul Doherty (ankle) and Adrian Faherty (shoulder) are still injured while Niall Coyne (ankle) and Pádraic Joyce are also not available.

The good news is Nicky Joyce, who was carrying an injury into the Cork match, is “100%” for Sunday while Fiachra Breathnach and Declan Meehan have recovered and are in contention for a place in the starting line-up which was to be announced late last night (Thursday) after training. Niall Coleman, who was absent due to a family bereavement last weekend, also returns to the fold for the Kerry clash.

The Kingdom have been in a bit of transition since last September with Darragh O Se retiring and Tommy Walsh heading to Australia, and Paul Galvin suspended, but Colm ‘Gooch’ Cooper and Kieran Donaghy showed last weekend in their win over Derry in Tralee that Kerry’s attack is still lethal.

Speaking to Tribune Sport this week, Kernan said he felt the Rebels wreaked havoc in the 10 minutes period after Armstrong was carried off, when his team had lost its shape. But the Armagh native was pleased in particular with the work rate shown by his players when they were without possession and he will be looking for a similar attitude – but this time for 70 minutes – against Jack O’Connor’s men.

“I was very happy with the way we started but when Seán got injured, we just lost our shape for about ten minutes and that’s when the damage was done. We had matched them up to that point but they did damage until we brought (Joe) Bergin back to centre forward,” he said.

“In fairness, Cork are together a long time and they have experience and it’s the way they play the game – they open up the space and inject power and pace into the game and were badly exposed at times – they ran through (Galway’s defence) a few times in the first half.

“Since the first day against Mayo I’d like to think we’ve improved. For us it’s all about getting a gelled team together, getting to know each other and having fellas 100% and fit for the championship.

“Kerry are next and that’s the beauty about this competition, every game is a test and every game we are learning more about ourselves. Galway’s record against Kerry isn’t that good – I think they’ve played seven times in the past few years and only won once. Hopefully, we can turn that around because we need the two points,” he added.


Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past



A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.


For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

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Archive News

Galway get job done



Date Published: 04-Feb-2013


IT might seem something like a short term outlook, but really nothing else matters in a first match of the National League, only the result.

Galway went into last Sunday’s Division Two game with Derry in a somewhat reticent mood . . . last year hadn’t ended well, and two weeks previously in Enniscrone, Sligo inflicted another unexpected blow.

The visit of Derry represented a trip into the unknown as the northern side under new manager, Brian McIver, have also embarked on a rebuilding process – never something that tends to deliver early results.

As Galway manager, Alan Mulholland, stood on the heavy sod of Pearse Stadium at around 3.30 last Sunday, he was essentially relieved that his side had come out on the right side of a 1-15 to 0-15 scoreline.

There were no whooping supporters but a small core of fans had gathered in the tunnel to clap Galway off – wins have been scarce enough of late, so when they come, they’re to be enjoyed.

“Yes, there’s no two ways about it, a win was vital for us here today. We have a young team, this is a work in progress, but there really is no substitute for a victory. It is a confidence thing, and we needed that boost,” said Mulholland.

A fortnight previously, he had plenty to chew on as Sligo ground his side down in the FBD league to win by 0-9 to 1-4, with Galway just scoring two points from play in that tie played in Enniscrone.

“We are concerned about our fade out periods in games. In Enniscrone it happened to us over a 60 minute match where we just couldn’t sustain the effort and today we really let Derry back into it, especially in the third quarter.

“It was a strange kind of game in one way, in that both ourselves and Derry played far better football into the wind, but that sometimes happens as teams are more conscious of retaining possession when facing a breeze,” said Mulholland.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Sentinel.


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Archive News

American songwriter Mark Eitzel set to deliver a memorable show



Date Published: 07-Feb-2013

Acclaimed American songwriter Mark Eitzel plays Róisín Dubh on Monday, February 25.

He has released over 15 albums of original material with his band American Music Club and as a solo artist – his latest being last year’s Don’t be a Stranger – and has been described by the Guardian newspaper as “America’s greatest living lyricist”.

After a string of bad luck, including a heart attack in May of 2011 and the implosion of American Music Club, Mark found himself in the studio with producer Sheldon Gomberg (who has previously worked with Rickie Lee Jones, Ron Sexsmith and Ben Harper).

That good luck was due to a good friend who had had won the lottery and offered to fund the recording of his next album. And Mark new what he wanted.

“I wanted to make an album more reminiscent of records like Harvest by Neil Young or Five Leaves Left by Nick Drake than anything I’ve previously done,” Mark says.

Inspired by his experience writing a musical, Mark’s songwriting is simpler on Don’t be a Stranger and lyrically reflects a more straightforward approach.

There is a haunted quality to tracks like I Love You But You’re Dead and The Bill Is Due, which are about broken promises, leftover people, the desperation someone feels when time and money are running out, and ultimately, the feeling of not knowing what comes next.

Doors 9pm, tickets €14/€12.


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