All systems go for further finals
THE HAPPIEST man around this weekend was Mick Hagan who got clear results in all but one of the matches played and is now ready for the remaining finals.
The exception was the semi-final of the Junior A hurling championship where Eire Og and Newcastle finished level and now must meet again to decide who will take on Fergal Og in the final.
The other result which could have effected Hagan’s plans was that draw in the Carlow football final. The Wicklow champions play the Carlow champions in the Club Championship but with Kiltegan now out of the hurling championship that problem does not arise. That club championship match is on Sunday, November 2.
Glenealy of course are less than happy at having to play the county final on Sunday without Leighton Glynn, and who could blame them. However, teams are short of key players all the time for a variety of reasons and life must go on.
Everyone will sympathise with Leighton on missing the final but by now he is in such demand by so many teams at so many levels that he simply has to miss something.
Congratulations again to Leighton on getting the trip to Australia. Being selected to play for ones country is the greatest honour any sportsperson can get and nothing can equal the experience of pulling on the green jersey for Ireland.
It should also give Glenealy that added incentive to win this one for Leighton and at times something like that can turn a very tight match, which this one is likely to be.
THE HURLING FINAL
For the fifth time in this decade Carnew and Glenealy will clash in the final of the Senior hurling championship on Sunday. Between them the two teams have divided the last six championships and a great rivalry has built up between them.
It should be another great match on Sunday and one not to be missed.
The curtain-raiser will be the Billy Byrne Cup final between Bray Emmets and Arklow Rock Parnells.
Ciarán Gaskins will be organising the now very popular mini-matches during the interval while the team to be honoured with the Jubilee Presentations will be Avondale. Club Championship The first of the Leinster Club Championship matches involving Wicklow kicks off on Sunday. Newcastle go in at the deep end when they take on Laois champions Killeshin in the Junior football championship.
The Wicklow Junior champions Kiltegan were not eligible to take part because they are part of a Senior club.
Jerome Kelly is almost ready to launch his development squads for the coming year.
This year the under-12 grade will be included for the first time but whether going down to this age group is a good thing is a matter for debate. How, for instance do you square this with the switch over to the Go Games, non-competitive idea?
The first of the trials for the U-14 District squads will be taking place at the start of November and Jerome has sent us the schedule for the trials – North District - November 1st at Kilmacanogue at 2 p.m.; East District - November 1st at Dunbur Park at 11 a.m.; South District - November 1st at Annacurra at 11 a.m.; West District - November 2nd at Stratford at 11 a.m.
All players under the age of 14 and over the age of 13 on January 1st 2009 are eligible.
Trials for Development Squads in the U-15 age group will begin the following week – November 8/9. We will have more details next week.
A request this week from Jackie Napier to anyone who has not got their material in for the Year Book. Remember this is one place where if you are not in you can’t win and according to Jackie a lot of the clubs are already in.
For anyone still not in, the cut off date in October 24th - that is THIS Friday and Jackie is advising anyone with outstanding materials - be it text or pictures to e-mail it direct to the printers.
Just in case you still need advice the number to ring is Jackie Napier - 086 3393692.
Two questions for our readers to solve this week – both involving Kiltegan.
In the next few weeks Kiltegan will be playing Newtown for the Swan Cup and the question is can Blaine Harmon play in this match?
One theory is that the Swan Cup was put up by the Swan family in memory of a great Gael the late Tom Swan. It is played for annually by the winners of two championships but has no status of its own and does not effect status in any way.
The other theory is that while Blaine Harmon played in every match in the Junior A championship he in no longer eligible for this competition because he also played in one Senior match – the county final. What do you think?
The second question in about the Kiltegan trainer Gavin Wynne.
Gavin, who is the manager of both the Senior football and the Senior hurling team in Kiltegan is just under 29 years of age. Is he the youngest manager ever to bring home the Miley Cup? For my own part I simply don’t know so really I am asking for help.
THE RAILWAY CUP
No up to date news on the Leinster team to take part in the interprovincial series.
Three Wicklow players – Ciarán Hyland of AGB, Jacko Dalton from Kiltegan and Dara O hAnnaidh from the Bray Emmets club were called up for trials last week and a far as we know all three are still in the running for places.
Just one more place where Leighton Glynn loses out but he has bigger fish to fry this week
And while we are on that subject the opening match between Ireland and Australia will be shown live on TV on Friday.
Not since the days when Kevin O’Brien and ‘Red’ Pat O’Byrne were showing off their silken skills at the compromise game have Wicklow fans had a better reason to tune in.
WEST JUVENILE NEWS
With the huge volume of matches run by Bord na nOg this year the district competitions got squeezed out. Only last weekend did Jimmie Birchall and Chris McGee-O’Connor get to play the semi-final of the West U-12 Football Championship.
St Nicholas just edged out Baltinglass after a great game. Two very evenly matched teams were locked together all through and with minutes to go the game was still level.
In the dying seconds St. Nicholas kicked over a point to win by 1-9 to 2-5.
In the other semi-final Blessington beat St. Kevin’s in another good match.
That game between Baltinglass and St. Nicholas was played at Blessington and some of the St. Nicholas stars were Oisin Addler; Steven Corcoran, Gary Allen and Conor Kelly.
Jimmy Birchall hopes to play the final between St. Nicholas and Blessington next weekend, hopefully on Sunday .
Meanwhile the draw for the semi-finals of the West U-14 Football Championship was made and Baltinglass and St. Nicholas must meet again in what is a repeat of the county final. Baltinglasss were the winners of that match in the A final but to add spice to this encounter St. Nicholas have since won the B Championship – so both teams will be going for a double.
St. Kevin’s and Blessington meet in the other semi-final.
The Allen Cup (U-11 football) has made good progress with St. Nicholas getting through to the final. Baltinglass and Blessington will play off to decide who the other team in the final will be. Daniels Cup Four teams are through to the knockout stages of the cup in memory of the late Raymond Daniels. They are Michael Dwyers; Aughrim/Annacurra, Coolkenno and Lacken/Kilbride. The draw for the semi-finals has not yet. been made
DINING WITH THE PRESIDENT
I had the great honour of been invited to dinner in Aras an Uachtarain on Friday night. Really I think it was the former Baltinglass club secretary Martin Coleman they wanted to see. He is now one of Micko’s most trusted lieutenants and I figured he might in some trouble so I tagged along just in case he got into more mischief.
I need not have worried; the President and Martin were the most gracious of hosts and even though both of up looked as if we had come straight out of the bogs they made us feel at home and we had a great night..
And who do you think was behind the whole thing?
Answers on a fifty euro note please – we are both low in funds after having to dress up for the occasion.
Colm Browne of Bray Emmets is tracked by Willy Byrne of Avondale during their Junior B hurling championship game in Greystones on Saturday.