Former Kilkenny star de­liv­ers hurl­ing treat in Kil­te­gan

Bray People - - SPORT -

“HOW of­ten did you hurl?” Asked a Kil­te­gan man of former Kilkenny star Richie Power who con­ducted a train­ing ses­sion for nu­mer­ous teams in the Car­low bor­der club last week. The ques­tion re­lated to how of­ten Power hurled as a young­ster on the road to be­com­ing a black and am­ber leg­end whose in­ter-county ca­reer was cut short by in­jury.

“Ev­ery day,” an­swered the Car­rick­shock man and it was th­ese two words that Kil­te­gan GAA Club Chair­man Damien Byrne found both in­flu­en­tial in one sense but telling when it comes to hurl­ing in Wick­low in this day and age.

“He told us he hurled ev­ery day when he was grow­ing up. Any­thing else is not hurl­ing, he said,” said Damien Byrne.

Power’s visit to Kil­te­gan came about thanks to the con­nec­tions and life­long in­ter­est in the Kil­te­gan GAA Club of the Doogue fam­ily from Baltinglass.

Brendan Doogue trained Kil­te­gan and his sons Niall and Brendan are con­tin­u­ing the love af­fair be­tween the prom­i­nent busi­ness fam­ily and the thriv­ing west Wick­low club and were keen to bring up a Kilkenny hurler to take a train­ing ses­sion in the club.

The plan didn’t ma­te­ri­alise last year but this year there was no stop­ping the Doogue broth­ers and at 5.45pm on a beau­ti­ful sum­mer’s evening Richie Power ar­rived in Kil­te­gan to be met with droves of young hurl­ing and camo­gie play­ers from un­der-7s all the way up to adult level.

“It was fan­tas­tic,” said Damien Byrne when asked how the ses­sion went. “He spent 20 min­utes or there­abouts with each group. He took the un­der-7s, 9s, and 11s to­gether, he had the Féile team for a ses­sion, the camo­gie Féile team, the In­ter­me­di­ate camo­gie team, the un­der-16s and Mi­nors and then the adults. He ar­rived at 5.45 and he pulled out of the club at 9.40pm that night and we only stopped for some food at 8pm for about 20 min­utes.

“He signed at least two items, be that a hel­met and a hurl of what­ever, be­long­ing to ev­ery child in the place. He was very well re­ceived, and he told us he will see us later in the year so hope­fully he’ll come back to us,” said Damien Byrne.

Power first played com­pet­i­tive hurl­ing dur­ing his school­ing at St. Kieran’s Col­lege. He ar­rived on the in­ter-county scene at the age of fif­teen when he first linked up with the Kilkenny Mi­nor team, be­fore later join­ing the un­der-21 side. He made his Se­nior de­but dur­ing the 2005 league. Power im­me­di­ately be­came a reg­u­lar mem­ber of the start­ing 15, and has won eight All-Ire­land medals, five Le­in­ster medals and three Na­tional League medals.

He has also won two Rail­way Cup medals.

Kilkenny’s Richie Power was a spe­cial guest of Kil­te­gan GAA Club last week. Here he is pic­tured with some of the younger mem­bers who turned up to meet the hurl­ing star.

Brendan Doogue, Damien Byrne, Richie Power, Paula Boland, Niall Doogue and John Mackey.

Fiona Hob­son and Andrea Byrne with Richie Power.

Roisin and John Tim­mins with Richie Power.

Kay­ley Nolan and Richie Power.

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