Foot­ball the win­ner as the new year kicked off in style

Bray People - - Bray People -

JAN­UARY

CORN NA MI­LAOISE

Full House signs went up as boys from 3rd and 4th classes from all over Wick­low de­scended on Ark­low Leisure Cen­tre, an Tochar Hall and Lough­lin­stown Leisure Cen­tre on Wed­nes­day 30th Jan­uary. Such was the in­ter­est that some schools ex­pressed an in­ter­est in bring­ing two teams but due to venue and time con­straints this was not pos­si­ble.

Nev­er­the­less twenty-six teams took part: twelve in Lough­lin­stown, ten in An Tochar and four in Ark­low. Bhain na buachaillí sult agus tait­neamh as an gComór­tas. Bhí siad saor ón scoil agus bhí siad ag imirt peil gaelach istigh i halla te com­por­dach. Ní raibh aon brú or­thu. Bhí gach duine ag imirt agus bhí an craic go maith. Corn na Mi­laoíse pro­motes full par­tic­i­pa­tion - Ev­ery player gets to play in the match and no­body re­mains as a sub­sti­tute. The rules are mod­i­fied and the boys are also af­forded an op­por­tu­nity to play in dif­fer­ent po­si­tions. It was great to see the en­thu­si­asm and ea­ger­ness on the young faces, proud to be wear­ing their school jer­sey for the first time in a Cu­mann n amBun­scol com­pe­ti­tion and thrilled to have been se­lected for their school. Foot­ball was cer­tainly a win­ner.

Cu­mann na mBun­scol ac­knowl­edges the as­sis­tance of all who made this, our first event of 2008 a suc­cess. Go raibh maith agaibh go léir.

FE­BRU­ARY The AGM of Cu­mann na mBun­scol Náisiúnta took place in Adare County Lim­er­ick last Satur­day. Wick­low was rep­re­sented by An Cathaoir­leach Jim O’Rior­dan. The na­tional or­gan­i­sa­tion’s re­vised con­sti­tu­tion was passed by the meet­ing. Al­though the orig­i­nal con­sti­tu­tion had served Cu­mann na mBun­scol well, some mi­nor al­ter­ations had to be made to it to re­flect the Ire­land of the early twenty-first cen­tury in keep­ing with the di­rec­tion of our Strate­gic Plan, “To have Gaelic Games the games of choice of the pri­mary school chil­dren of Ire­land.” As the month pro­gressed schools par­tic­i­pated in three di­vi­sions of the Al­lianz Foot­ball Leagues.

MARCH Nine­teen teams from all across the county de­scended on the fan­tas­tic fa­cil­i­ties of the Brock­agh Re­source Cen­tre in Laragh on Fri­day 7th March for the an­nual Tráth na gCeist for the Al­lianz Shield. Once again it proved to be a close con­test with a dou­ble tie-break needed to sep­a­rate St. Pat’s of Wick­low and the home school Scoil Chaoimhín Naofa.

How­ever at the cut­ting edge it was the hold­ers Rath­coyle who once again proved when it comes to the an­nual GAA quiz that the small schools have the up­per hand. The schools that con­tested this year’s quiz were St. Brigid’s Kil­coole, St. An­thony’s Kil­coole, St. Joseph’s Balt­in­glass, Rath­coyle, Rath­drum BNS, Scoil Chualann, Scoil Chaoimhín Naofa A and B, Tal­bot­stown, Kil­mac, St. Kevin’s Grey­stones, St. Pat’s A and B, Ash­ford, Val­ley­mount, St. Cro­nan’s and St. Mary’s Bless­ing­ton A and B. There were eight rounds of ten ques­tions and at the half way mark Rath­coyle were on 37 points, St. Cro­nan’s on 35, one ahead of Laragh A who were two ahead of Kil­mac. St. Pat’s A and St. An­thony’s were level on 31 while St. Mary’s Bless­ing­ton A were on 30 points. How­ever, the sec­ond half of the quiz changed the sit­u­a­tion with for­mer win­ners Val­ley­mount com­ing into the fray. Fol­low­ing the fi­nal round Rath­coyle were the out­right win­ners on 72, four points ahead of Val­ley­mount. St. Pat’s A and Laragh A were tied on 67. A tie break was needed to sep­a­rate th­ese two teams, but this did not work as they were both level af­ter the tie break round. It then went to a sud­den death with the home school just pip­ping the boys from the county town. On the night Mái­s­tir na gCeist was East Coast FM’s Michael Sar­gent who was once again per­form­ing the hon­ours for Cu­mann na mBun­scol. Bord na nÓg’s Pat Mitchell, a Laragh man, spoke to the boys and girls and pre­sented the home school with their medals. County Ad­min­is­tra­tor Michael Mur­phy pre­sented the Val­ley­mount with their medals and Wick­low GAA Pres­i­dent Peter Keogh per­formed the hon­ours for the winning Rath­coyle team. Thanks to Cu­mann na mBun­scol’s Jim O’Rior­dan, Sinéad Ní Chreán Loin­sigh, Dave Barry, Geral­dine Kelly and Anne Marie MacKenna who en­sured that ev­ery­thing went smoothly. Thanks also to hur­ley maker David Mo­ran and the county board who pro­vided some spot prizes. Be­cause each club do­nated spot prizes on the night very many chil­dren went home with some­thing re­gard­less of how their team per­formed.

Al­though the re­sult from the Wick­low Of­faly match may not have brought much hap­pi­ness to the Gaels of the Gar­den County, nev­er­the­less for four pupils of New­town Pri­mary School the oc­ca­sion will be fondly re­mem­bered! Michael Doyle, Ross Davis, Kenneth Turner and Adam Hef­fer­nan were se­lected to be the of­fi­cial Cu­mann na mBun­scol Ball Boys for the Al­lianz fix­ture. The Ball Boy ini­tia­tive was in­tro­duced last year and was deemed to be a suc­cess, so this year through the good offices of County Ad­min­is­tra­tor Michael Mur­phy it was de­cided to in­vite pupils from a school in the county to par­tic­i­pate. The four boys and their fam­i­lies were guests of the County Board and thor­oughly en­joyed the ex­pe­ri­ence, even though the re­sult was not favourable. Other schools that par­tic­i­pated in this scheme were Ash­ford and Barn­dar­rig. It is hoped to con­tinue this ini­tia­tive in 2009.

The Gar­den County was the cen­tre of much in­ter­est at the INTO An­nual Congress that was held in Kilkenny last week. The county sent a full del­e­ga­tion to the an­nual con­fer­ence of the na­tional teach­ers of Ire­land, but this year, thanks to the good of­fice of County Ad­min­is­tra­tor, Michael Mur­phy, the Tommy Mur­phy Cup was present at the Cu­mann na mBun­scol Náisiúnta stand. The cup gen­er­ated much in­ter­est and was ac­com­pa­nied by the Liam MacCarthy tro­phy for the three days of the con­fer­ence. Dis­tin­guished vis­i­tors to the stand in­cluded GAA Pres­i­dent Nickey Bren­nan, re­tired Di­rec­tor Gen­eral Liam Mulvihill, Gen­eral Trea­surer of INTO Sheila Nu­nan and Min­is­ter for Ed­u­ca­tion in North­ern Ire­land Caitríona Ruane. Also as­sist­ing at the stand were Selina O’Re­gan from the GAA Mu­seum and Mary O’Con­nor, Di­rec­tor of Camogie De­vel­op­ment with Cu­mann Camó­gaíocht na nGael. In­deed if you would like in­for­ma­tion on the GAA Mu­seum Selina can be con­tacted at sore­gan@crokepark.ie. Mary will as­sist any school that wishes to pro­mote camogie. She can be emailed at mo­con­nor@camogie.ie .

Rath­coyle, win­ners of an­nual Tráth na gCeist in March, with Wick­low G.A.A. Pres­i­dent Peter Keogh.

INTO Gen­eral Trea­surer Sheila Nu­nan with Tommy Mur­phy Cup.

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