Cel­e­brat­ing foot­ball for the over 35s

The Kerryman (South Kerry Edition) - - COMMUNITY NEWS -

CEL­E­BRAT­ING foot­ball for the over 35s is at the heart of the fiercely com­pet­i­tive Comór­tas Peile Tommy Grif­fin, which was held in Din­gle over the week­end.

This was the sixth year of the com­pe­ti­tion, run by the five time All-Ire­land se­nior cham­pi­onship medal win­ner. Nine teams com­peted, with teams from around the coun­try, over the wa­ter from Lon­don and as far South as Liffré in Brit­tany. St. Brendan’s Kil­lar­ney were the over­all win­ners af­ter they de­feated West Kerry in the fi­nal.

Comór­tas Peile Tommy Grif­fin is for play­ers over 35 years of age and, bear­ing in mind that fit­ness lev­els mightn’t be what they were, the matches are played with 13 play­ers a side and 15 minute halves. The tour­na­ment was played on the pitch at Pobalscoil Chorca Dhuib­hne as well as in Páirc an Ágah­saigh.

Tommy started the week­end as a way of in­tro­duc­ing recre­ational foot­ball for for­mer play­ers. “Peo­ple can play golf well into their six­ties... but with foot­ball you train hard and then there is noth­ing,” said Tommy who knows only to well the per­sonal com­mit­ment that is in­volved in suc­cess­fully rep­re­sent­ing your county and club.

The week­end also fa­cil­i­tated a re­union of the Sem team that won the Ho­gan Cup 25 years ago, with mem­bers of that team fly­ing from as far as Los An­ge­les to join in the cel­e­bra­tions. The Sem 1992 team in­cluded three play­ers from West Kerry, Breándán Fitzger­ald, John Dor­gan and Conor O’Don­nell, the for­mer pair togged out over the week­end along­side Sea­mus Moyni­han who has made the trip West ev­ery year of the com­pe­ti­tion and, ac­cord­ing to Tommy, was “the fittest man there”.

The shield cup was won by Adare who beat Naomh Bar­róg of Dublin. It is on­wards and up­wards for the tour­na­ment as an­other batch of play­ers will reach the re­quired 35 years and qual­ify to play in next years tour­na­ment.

Mean­while, recre­ational foot­ball will be the last thing on Tommy’s mind at the week­end when the Kerry mi­nor team he coaches takes on Derry in the All-Ire­land Mi­nor Cham­pi­onship fi­nal. Din­gle’s Deivi­das Uo­sis will be in goal for Kerry and hope­fully he will have the same suc­cess as Paud O’Donoghue – the player of the tour­na­ment in Din­gle at the week­end who didn’t con­cede a sin­gle goal dur­ing the com­pe­ti­tion.

The West Kerry Team that played in the fi­nal of the Tommy Grif­fin Over 35 Tour­na­ment in Páirc an Ágha­saigh on Satur­day. Back: Jim Kel­li­her, Aodán Mac Gear­ailt, Gene Far­rell, Paddy Bar­rett, De­nis De­vane, John Hick­son, Diar­muid Mur­phy, Seán Dor­gan, Liam Óg Higgins. Front: David De­vane, Padraig Cor­co­ran with his son Fer­gal, Johnny B. Bros­nan, Kevin Grif­fin, David Clif­ford, John Flan­nery, and Séa­mus O’Dowd along with the team’s mas­cots.

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