A pos­i­tive from Peter

“We’ve been dream­ers too long”

Bray People - - SPORT - BREN­DAN LAWRENCE

WICK­LOW GAA Pres­i­dent Peter Keogh ad­dressed the Con­ven­tion on Satur­day evening and warned that un­less Bal­li­nakill was used to its full po­ten­tial it will just be another field.

“First of all the De­vel­op­ment at Bal­li­nakill give us end­less op­por­tu­ni­ties on a num­ber of fronts,” he said after in­form­ing the crowd that 60 years pre­vi­ous he had at­tended his first Con­ven­tion in a snow strom in Round­wood.

“Bal­li­nakill by it­self may be a mon­u­ment to the hard work, ded­i­ca­tion and fore­sight of a num­ber of peo­ple, but on its own what will achieve? Noth­ing.

“It is great to travel up there, even to bring friends - point out the fine pitches, the grand build­ings, the mag­nif­i­cent scenery – but there it could end. It is just another Field – or like Aughrim- a Field of Dreams.

“Per­haps, in Wick­low, we have been dream­ers for far too long

“It is the uses that we can make of this great fa­cil­ity in the years ahead that will de­cide its real value to this county.

“I have heard said about this and other such de­vel­op­ments like it, “Oh, that is fine but would they not have been bet­ter spend­ing that money on the play­ers, in par­tic­u­lar the young play­ers?”

We all know the an­swer to that. The young play­ers have to be looked after prop­erly but the Where-with- all, the fa­cil­i­ties had to be put in place first.

“I be­lieve that the men who were guid­ing this ship over re­cent years got their pri­or­i­ties right.

“I am also very im­pressed with how the new style De­vel­op­ment squads are pro­gress­ing.

The other big break­through that was made in the year just ended was Bray Em­mets com­ing in from the cold and bring­ing home their first SHC in over 60 years.

We all know that to make real and sus­tain­able progress in any county you must get and keep the As­so­ci­a­tion strong and healthy in the big cen­tres of pop­u­la­tion – just look at Kerry, Kilkenny, Dublin, Cork – any­where.

I am not play­ing down the con­tri­bu­tions of clubs like Gle­nealy, Carnew, Avon­dale or any oth­ers. Get­ting and keep­ing the big cen­tres of pop­u­la­tion at the top has to be one of our pri­or­i­ties.

Pres­i­dent of Wick­low GAA, Peter Keogh, with Ea­monn Mur­ray at the Con­ven­tion on Sa­tru­day night.

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