Micko happy to re­turn with a point

Bray People - - Sport -

SUR­VIVAL IN Case­ment Park and a point on the board was enough to keep Micko and his merry men happy at the week­end.

The mae­stro knew he was in trou­ble even be­fore he headed north. He had to pull a team to­gether without as many as six of the de­fend­ers from last year; both of his mid­field­ers and some for­wards.

He will still be without Damien Power, Dara O hAn­naidh, Paddy Dal­ton and Brian McGrath for a while yet but Mick McLough­lin is back in train­ing and Rory Nolan is re­cov­er­ing well from his an­kle in­jury and ex­pects to be back in­side a month.

The best he can hope for with mid­field­ers Thomas Walsh and James Stafford is to have them back for the cham­pi­onship.

How­ever, a point out of the An­der­stown venue is a good re­sult at any time and he told the as­sem­bled me­dia out­side the dress­ing rooms that he was happy with the re­sult and with the sec­ond-half dis­play.

‘The lads had a long jour­ney, some of them would be out from early morn­ing and it took them time to set­tle. How­ever when they found their feet they played quite well and in the end a draw was a fair re­sult.’


Michael’Titch’ Phe­lan and his two se­lec­tors, Martin Barnes and Eu­gene Byrne are los­ing no time in sort­ing out their panel and pre­par­ing for their first match in the Na­tional Hurl­ing League.

On Wed­nes­day night they had a trial match against Car­low IT in the Col­lege grounds in Car­low

De­spite the fact that the Carnew club­men were ab­sent be­cause of the death of col­league Niall Flem­ing the turn-out was good.

Af­ter a com­pet­i­tive enough match the Wick­low team ran out win­ners by 3-9 to 1-11.

Kil­coole Mi­nor Fin­tan Don­nolly, who usu­ally plays out field got a run in goal and did quite well. Cuala club­man Eoin Dunne got a run at full-for­ward and fin­ished up top scorer with 2-1. Ger White and John Keogh were back for their first run while Ro­nan Keddy was test­ing out his in­jured leg.

The team that played the first-half was: Fin­tan Don­nolly (Kil­coole); Colm O’Neill (Glenealy), Jim Con­nors (St. Pat’s), Ciarán Doyle (Kil­te­gan); Peter Kiely (Bray Em­mets); Eoin O’Neill (Kil­te­gan), Tony Kin­sella (ARP); Jonathan O’Neill (1-3, Glenealy), Ro­nan Keddy (Kil­coole); Ea­mon Fur­long (0-1, Bray Em­mets), Jef­frey Ber­ming­ham (Kil­te­gan), De­nis Mo­ran (0-1, Buf­fers Al­ley); Adrian Keogh (Kil­te­gan), Eoin Dunne (2-1, Cuala), An­thony Driver (0-1, Glenealy).

Play­ers who came on in the sec­ond­half in­cluded: John Keogh (Kil­te­gan), John Con­nors, Michael Con­nors and Chris Ka­vanagh ( 0-2, St. Pat’s), Thomas Doyle (Glenealy); Christy Moorhouse and Ger­ard O Murchu (Bray Em­mets), James Kelly and Peter Keane (Eire Og), Ger White and Eoin Ma­her.

Un­avoid­ably ab­sent were Alan Driver (Glenealy), John Harper and Keith Barnes (ARP); Andy O’Brien (St. Pat’s) and Eoin Ma­son (Bray Em­mets).

Martin Barnes hopes to have the foot­ball tied Stephen Kelly back on the panel be­fore long.

‘Titch’ had an­other good turnout for train­ing on Sun­day morn­ing and the re­ports are that the pitch in Ark­low in now in great shape.

How­ever, he will still have his work cut to pull a team to gather for the start of the League.


Phillip McGilly­cuddy had an­other stiff work-out for his U-21 foot­ballers on Tues­day.

They took on a strong Wex­ford side in a prac­tice match at Round­wood and won by 3-13 to 2-9.

The Bray Em­mets goal­keeper Rory Bres­lin got a full match be­tween the posts and in the ab­sence of Bran­dan McGarr, Craig O’Neill from KIl­macanogue got a full game at No. 3.

O’Neill had been on the in­jured list and his re­turn is an­other boost for the team.

An­other of the in­jured play­ers Colm Coogan of Ballymanus also got a game and showed no ill ef­fects from his re­cent lay-off.

Paul Cun­ning­ham and Shane Carty were not avail­able but most of the other mem­bers of a 29 strong panel were present.

That is likely to be Phillip’s last match ahead of their meet­ing with Long­ford in Pierce Park, Long­ford on Sun­day.

The team that lined out against Wex­ford was as fol­lows: Rory Bres­lin (Bray Em­mets); Colm Coogan (Ballymanus), Craig O’Neill (Kil­mac), Ciarán Doyle (St. Pat’s); Seán Met­calfe (Dunlavin), Craig Smullen (Eire Og), An­thony McLough­lin (Bless­ing­ton ); Blaine Har­mon (Kil­te­gan), Cathal McNi­cholas (New­town); Dar­ren Hay­den (Eire Og), Donal Fitzger­ald (Ash­ford), Seán Tobin (St. Pat’s); Diar­muid Cronin (Strat­ford), Dean Siney (Bless­ing­ton) and Tom Kelly (St. Pat’s).


Michael Byrne and his se­lec­tors Fran­cis Stephen­son, Tim Balfe and Syl Ivers had a trial for Mi­nor hurlers in Kil­coole on Sun­day morn­ing.

They were quite pleased with a turn-out of play­ers from five clubs - Bray Em­mets, Eire Og, St. Pa­trick’s, Glenealy and Carnew.

They have planned an­other trial for the Ark­low Rocks pitch on Sun­day morn­ing and other clubs are asked to bring along play­ers.


The sad news of the death of Joe Tim­mins broke at the week­end.

Joe had been un­well for a short time but his death in Tal­laght hospi­tal on Fri­day shocked and sad­dened, not just his own fam­ily but Gaelic foot­ball fol­low­ers ev­ery­where.

Joe was one of the all time greats of Wick­low foot­ball. He grew up and learned his foot­ball in An­nacurra, won an In­ter­me­di­ate cham­pi­onship with the fa­mous club in 1953 when they beat Balt­in­glass in the fi­nal.

He was one of the few to play Mi­nor for Wick­low for three suc­ces­sive years - ’49 ,50 and ’51 and was play­ing Se­nior foot­ball while still a teenager. He played on the Wick­low team on that never to be for­got­ten day of the ‘long count’ against Meath in ’54. He played his last Se­nior game for Wick­low in 1956 be­fore trans­fer­ring to play for Dublin and along with his brother John played a big part in help­ing them to win the All-Ire­land fi­nal in 1958.

His re­mains were re­moved from his home in Clon­dalkin to the lo­cal church on Mon­day evening while burial took place in Sag­gart on Tues­day.

His cof­fin was draped in the Wick­low and Dublin colours while there was a huge turn-out of mourn­ers from both coun­ties and far be­yond.

The An­nacurra G.A.A. Club put on a bus to take the crowd from the parish where he spent so many happy years and of­fi­cers of the Wick­low and Dublin County Boards were in at­ten­dance. To his wife Betty, his sons, daugh­ters and ex­tended fam­ily we ten­der our sin­cere sym­pa­thy. May he rest in peace. Our sym­pa­thy also to the Barnes and Breen fam­i­lies of Ark­low on the death of Es­ther Breen. Her daugh­ter Martina is the wife of Coach­ing and Games Of­fi­cer Martin Barnes.


Not too of­ten do we get the chance to bring good news on the ref­er­ee­ing front.

The news has just broke that Ed­die Craul has been ap­pointed to ref­eree the All-Ire­land Ju­nior club fi­nal in Croke Park on Fe­bru­ary 14.

Ed­die will be bring­ing along four of his reg­u­lar um­pires and has cho­sen Tom McKe­own, John Fin­negan, Pat Reid and Shay McGrath to do the job.

All are de­lighted to get ex­po­sure in ‘Cro­ker’ and every­one is hop­ing this will lead on to greater things.

It is some time not since a Wick­low man has ref­er­eed an All-Ire­land fi­nal at any level and we all wish Ed­die luck on the day

In­ci­den­tally this will be a busy week­end for the Kil­bride whistler and his men.

On the next day (Sun­day) Ed­die will be ref­er­ee­ing the Car­low v. Lon­don game in the NFL.


All of which re­minds me to send best wishes for a speedy re­cov­ery to Ed­die’s fa­ther Jimmy Craul who is in Naas Hospi­tal at the mo­ment


A re­minder from Scór Sec­re­tary John Tim­mins that the Wick­low Scór fi­nals will be com­ing up at the end of this month.

John be­lieves the in­ter­est in the so­cial side of the or­ga­ni­za­tion is grow­ing again. He has had a num­ber of in­quiries and re­quests for rule books with he re­gards as a good sign.

Get­ting down to work is the next step, be­cause it does take some time to pre­pare prop­erly for any com­pe­ti­tion.

Af­ter all, he says, a club would not go out in the first round of the cham­pi­onship without train­ing.

Again he wishes to re­mind clubs that they can now en­ter in just one cat­e­gory and take part.

So don’t tell me that you can’t get three knowl­edgable peo­ple to make up a Ques­tion Time team, or some­one to sing a bar of a song or do a recita­tion?

The fi­nals takes place in New­town on Fe­bru­ary 28.


Last week we took a look at the re­port pre­sented by Hugh O’Brien, Chair­man of a spe­cial Re­view Com­mit­tee set up by County Chair­man Andy O’Brien.

Be­cause of past ex­pe­ri­ences of com­mis­sions and how their re­ports were dealt with, and reser­va­tions ex­pressed by this group when pass­ing on a copy of the re­port we be­lieve that some­times it is not enough to take action, but to let every­one see what action has been taken.

Last week we gave you the back­ground to the need for such a group, the mem­ber­ship of the group, and how they went about their task.

This week we pro­pose to go through their Terms of Ref­er­ence and take a look at one or two of their rec­om­men­da­tions, and what re­sponse was forth­com­ing from the Board. Terms of ref­er­ence: (1) To as­sess and eval­u­ate all com­pe­ti­tions in both adult and un­der­age level at both Club and in­ter-county level and make rec­om­men­da­tions for im­prove­ments.

(2) To re­view the link be­tween the clubs and schools within the county and to re­view how best im­prove­ments can be made.

(3) To in­ves­ti­gate how club bound­aries af­fect the de­vel­op­ment in both ru­ral and ur­ban ar­eas and to make rec­om­men­da­tions on any pro­posed change.

(4) To ex­am­ine the un­der­age struc­tures within the county to in­sure all young peo­ple are be­ing catered for at each age level.

(5) To re­view the un­der­age coach­ing struc­tures within the county and to bring for­ward sug­ges­tions that would en­hance the de­vel­op­ment of the games. Struc­tures: The first rec­om­men­da­tion the group made was on Ju­ve­nile Struc­tures.

Hav­ing noted the many peo­ple that were giv­ing so much of their time in help­ing to pro­mote Hurl­ing and Foot­ball at club and county level - much of the work car­ried out away from the spot­light, they iden­ti­fied one glar­ing weak­ness in the set up - a to­tal lack of co­he­sion (rather then co­op­er­a­tion) be­tween the ac­tiv­i­ties of each group within the un­der­age sec­tor. Rec­om­men­da­tions: (1) That the County Board set up a Games De­vel­op­ment and Coach­ing Com­mit­tee with re­spon­si­bil­ity for pro­vid­ing a co­he­sive ap­proach to the devel­ope­ment of Gaelic Games up to and in­clud­ing Mi­nor Level

(2) The com­po­si­tion of this Com­mit­tee to be -

(3) Games de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer to act as Chair­man and be for Hurl­ing or Foot­ball as ap­pro­pri­ate. (4) Youth Of­fi­cer to act as Sec­re­tary. (5) One Rep from - Pri­mary Schools; Post Pri­mary Schools; Coiste na nOg plus the Games De­vel­op­ment Ad­min­is­tra­tor; Le­in­ster Hurl­ing De­vel­op­ment Of­fi­cer and one co-or­di­na­tor from Foot­ball De­vel­op­ment squads and hurl­ing squads.

Happy to be able to re­port that this rec­om­men­da­tion was acted on and Martin Cole­man pre­sented the first re­port to County Con­ven­tion in Novem­ber.

Next week we will find out what the Group has to say about Cu­mann na mBun­scol and how it is op­er­at­ing.


More good news at the week­end as Brian Bren­nan con­firmed that the Bren­nan Ho­tels spon­sor­ship of the Mi­nor and U-21 foot­ball teams would con­tinue for an­other year.

In the present eco­nomic cli­mate that was just the news that Andy O’Brien and County Trea­surer Ea­mon O’Ke­effe were wait­ing for.


Club sup­port and de­vel­op­ment of­fi­cer Micharel O’Sul­li­van has in­door hurl­ing up and run­ning in the West Wick­low area for the first time ever.

This lat­est ini­tia­tive is tak­ing place in St. Kevin’s Post Pri­mary School in Dunlavin each Mon­day night from 7.15 to 9 o’clock.

Five West Wick­low clubs, Bless­ing­ton, Michael Dwyers, St. Kevin’s, St. Ni­cholas and Strat­ford are tak­ing part as well as Bal­ly­more from Kil­dare.

Two age groups, U-10 and U-12 are in­volved and all play­ers are guar­an­teed matches on the night.

Michael is also con­duct­ing Fun­da­men­tal Skills cour­ses in the Pri­mary Schools in the area at present. This is a three-week course and the idea is that when the course is over the lo­cal club will take over from there.

This week the action is in Balt­in­glass, Dunlavin and Donard.

Arthur French and Andy O'Brien present T.J. Hen­nessy of Carnew with the Mi­nor hurler award at the Wick­low G.A.A. Gar­den County awards in the Ark­low Bay Ho­tel re­cently.

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