Seir Kieran’s Eugene Coughlan is the latest inductee into the Bridge House Hotel, Offaly Hurling Hall of Fame. Eugene will receive his award at the Awards night in the Bridge House Hotel on January 16th next. Eugene played for Offaly from 1975 until 1990, making his debut in November 1975 when he came on as a substitute against Waterford in the National Hurling league, he played his final game against Laois in November 1990 wearing the familiar No 3 jersey. In all Eugene made 120 League and Championship appearances during a glittering career which saw him win Two All-Ireland Medals, 7 Leinster Senior Medals and two All-Star Awards. While he also won four Offaly Senior Championship medals with Seir Kieran, captaining the side to their first success in 1988.
The Full list of Hurling Recipients are:
Hall Of Fame: Eugene Coughlan (Seir Kieran)
Senior: David King (Coolderry)
Intermediate: Graham Lynch (Lusmagh)
Junior: Joey Deehan (Clara)
U21: Cillian Kiely (Kilcormac/Killoughey)
Minor: Liam Langton (Clodiagh Gaels & Na Fianna)
Referee: Declan Cooke (Crinkill)
Camogie: Marian Crean (Shinrone)
Doon’s Johnny Egan will enter the Offaly GAA Football Hall of Fame at this year’s Awards Night Sponsored by Bridge House Hotel on January 16th 2016. Egan who made 99 league and Championship appearances for Offaly between 1957 and 1970. His made his league debut against Louth in 1957 wearing the number 5 jersey and his Championship debut the following year against Laois at full back. However, it was the number 4 jersey that he made his own as he went on to form a formidable full back line with Paddy McCormack and Greg Hughes for many years.
In fact 87 of Egan’s appearances for Offaly were in the No: 4 jersey. He played in two All-Ireland Finals (1961 & 69) and played his last Championship game for Offaly in that famous Leinster Football Final of 1970 when, in the first 80 minute decider, Offaly were defeated 2-22 to 5-12 by Meath. Egan’s last game for Offaly was in November 1970 when he lined out in his customary corner back position against Longford in the National Football League.
The Full list of Football Recipients are:
Hall of Fame: Johnny Egan (Doon)
Senior: Sean Doyle (Edenderry)
Senior B: Colm Quinn (Ballycumber)
Intermediate: PJ Daly (Cappincur)
Junior: Lee Dempsey (Clonbullogue)
U21: Eoin Carroll (Cappincur & St Vincent’s)
Minor: Kyle Higgins (Ferbane & Ferbane/Belmont)
Referee: David Walsh (Gracefield)
Ladies Football: Roisin Egan (Naomh Ciarán)
Offaly GAA wishes to extend sincere sympathy to the family of the late Paddy Screeney, Kilcormac who died on 31st October. Paddy was a member of the Offaly Minor football that won the county’s only All-Ireland title in 1964, defeating Cork 0-15 to 1-11 in the decider. To his wife Anne, sons Keith and Ronan, daughters in-law Jacqueline and Bronagh, grandchildren, brothers, sisters and extended family goes our deepest sympathy. Ar Dheis Dé go raibh a anam dilis.
Coolderry 2-15 St Rynagh’s 1-16
Veteran star Joe Brady broke St Rynagh's hearts at O’Connor Park in Tullamore when he struck a late goal that gave Coolderry a 2-15 to 1-16 victory over St Rynaghs in the Offaly senior hurling decider on Sunday October 18th.
The score than gave them their first county title since 2011 and condemned Rynagh's to a seventh county final defeat since their last victory in 1993.
Having trailed by seven points early in the second half, St Rynagh's looked to have pulled off an impossible comeback when they moved into a three-point lead with less than five minutes to play.
However, but there was to be a twist in the tail as frees from Brian Carroll and Damien Murray either side of Brady’s goal gave Coolderry a sensational victory.
The dramatic scenes in the closing stages of this contest looked to be extremely unlikely during a one-sided first half in which St Rynaghs struggled to recapture the form that easily accounted for three-in-a-row champions Kilcormac-Killoughey in the semi-final.
Barely 20 seconds had elapsed before man of the match Kevin Connolly sprinted past Pat Camon and found the net with a 20-metre shot, a strong omen for Coolderry since their previous two county final victories featured goals inside the opening 60 seconds.
That lead was soon doubled as Coolderry easily found their stride in the early stages, while St Rynaghs’ hurling was riddled with poor touches and below par decision making.
Stephen Wynne’s freetaking was their only source of scores in the opening half up until Stephen Quirke’s injury-time score from under the terrace, a point that sent them in at half time 1-09 to 0-07 adrift.
Two sensational scores from Kevin Connolly and Brian Carroll stretched Coolderry’s advantage out to seven points shortly after half time but Rynaghs were a changed force after the break and they began to dominate the battles for loose possession.
A magnificent lift, run and strike from Kevin Brady kept Coolderry’s supporters in full voice but defensively they were in trouble and time and again they resorted to pulling down the rampant St Rynaghs runners, with Stephen Wynne unerringly punishing every infringement.
With 12 minutes remaining, just two of Rynaghs 13 scores came from play – but their third was a spectacular strike, the highlight of the afternoon and a goal worthy of winning any county final.
Aidan Treacy played the role of supplier with a precise lateral ball from the left corner of the attack, but the real work was done by Ben Conneely, who took a wonderful catch on his knees and then blasted the ball low into the far corner of the net.
Kevin Connolly broke a ten-minute scoring drought with a fine point but there was a real spring in St Rynaghs’ step at this stage and they surged forward, picking off three more points to establish what appeared to be a match-winning lead.
Coolderry had one final card to play as they asked Joe Brady to move forward to the edge of the square and that turned out to be a decisive switch as he collected a mishit shot from Martin Corcoran and powered through Dermot Shortt to hit the net from close range at the start of injury time.
St Rynaghs had one last chance to salvage a draw but they were penalised for handling the ball on the ground under the subsequent puckout and it fell to captain Brian Carroll to point the resultant free from his own 45m line, minutes before he stepped up to collect the Seán Robbins cup for Coolderry, 35 years after his late father Pat was afforded the same honour in the 1980 senior final against Kinnitty.
Coolderry: S Corcoran; S Connolly, T Corcoran, S Burke; A Corcoran (0-01), J Brady (1-00), K Brady (0-02); C Molloy, D King (0-01); K Connolly (1-02), B Teehan, B Carroll (0-03, 0-01 free); E Ryan, M Corcoran, D Murray (0-06, 0-05 frees).
Subs: A Connolly for S Connolly (51), D Parlon for Ryan (60+1)
St Rynaghs: C Clancy; D Maloney, D Shortt, N Wynne; C Hernon (0-01), G Conneely, P Camon; S Dolan, N White; A Treacy, S Wynne (0-13, 0-12 frees), R Hughes (0-01); M Maloney, J O’Connor, S Quirke (0-01).
Subs: P Quirke for White (21), B Conneely (1-00) for M Maloney (HT), S Óg Lyons for Hernon (58)
Referee: Declan Cooke
Fundraising underway to propel teams back to the top-tier
Offaly GAA today announced details of the development of a new Centre of Excellence for Gaelic games in the county – The Faithful Fields – plans for which were officially launched by the GAA President Aogán Ó Fearghail at an event at Croke Park. The project is designed to aid the development of players in all codes, both male and female, with a view to getting Offaly back to the top-tier of inter-county teams.
The Faithful Fields will cost €2.25 million to develop overall, €750,000 of which must be raised locally with a deadline in place of Monday, November 30th. The remaining 75% will come via contributions from the GAA’s Central Council, Leinster GAA, the Sports Capital Programme and the Offaly Enterprise Fund.
Should the full amount not be raised the development will be tailored accordingly as The Faithful Fields will be a debt free project.
When complete The Faithful Fields will comprise of four floodlit, full-sized training pitches, a complex of six modern dressing rooms, a meeting room/dining area and a weights/circuit training room. A 1.1 kilometre walkway will also be available for use by the wider community. The development will be centrally located in Kilcormac on the main Birr to Tullamore Road.
Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael Aogán Ó Fearghail, Ard Stiúrathóir Paraic Duffy, members of the Offaly County Board and The Faithful Fields Working Group were joined by current and former players and friends of Offaly GAA at today’s launch at Croker Park. World renowned golfer and proud Offaly man Shane Lowry, whose family is steeped in Offaly GAA, was also among those in attendance urging people within the county and those with connections to the county to support the campaign.
Speaking ahead of the launch, Kieran Keenaghan, Chairman of The Faithful Fields Work Group, said; “This is not about bricks and mortar. This is about securing a successful future for the generations of Offaly players and supporters to come. We have a long and proud tradition in this county and it’s the current generation’s responsibility to ensure that legacy is passed on to the next.
“Our goal is to raise €500,000 and thereby ensure the project is developed as planned in its entirety. However we want to make it clear that this will not become a financial burden on Offaly GAA or the people of Offaly. We are confident of reaching our target but are mindful that elements of the project will need to be adjusted should we not.
“The Faithful Fields project already has support from within every parish in Offaly and now it’s time to kick on and ensure Offaly GAA in all codes, male and female, is given every chance of being successful in the years to come”.
Uachtarán Chumann Lúthchleas Gael Aogán Ó Fearghail added; “We need as many counties as we can being competitive at the highest level. Offaly have a reputation for punching above their weight in the past and now steps are being taken to ensure they do so again in the not too distant future. A development like this can play a vital role but ultimately it comes down to people, both coaches and players. This facility will allow those people to thrive”.
The development of this legacy project will benefit Offaly GAA for years to come and will add to the already sterling work that is going on in Coaching and Games Development at county and club level. The ultimate aim is to see Offaly GAA reclaim its place among the elite GAA counties.
A PREVIEW night ahead of the Offaly Senior Hurling final will take place this Friday night (16th October) in Brian Whelahan's Bar in Birr. Local journalists, Brian Lowry of the Midland Tribune and Midlands 103’s Head of Sport Will O'Callaghan have come together to co-host the event that will raise money for the Mary Kenny Offaly Hospice and Cancer Research Fund.
Offaly and Belmont hurler David Kenny will among a panel of experts on the night as the Mary Kenny Offaly Hospice and Cancer Research Fund was set up in memory of his late mother.
Proceedings kick off at 9pm on Friday night where a host of guests will take to the stage to give their views on both the Senior final between Coolderry and St Rynagh's and the novel Minor decider between Ferbane/Belmont and Na Fianna. They’ll also look at Lusmagh's recent triumph in the Intermediate championship and Clara's success at Junior level.
There is no admission charge on the night, with buckets available for patrons to make donations as they please to the Offaly Hospice fund.
Panel members include players from clubs that have come up against Sunday's finalists while it is also hoped to have a selection of other well-known individuals from around the County to talk about all things hurling.
All-Ireland Final referee Brian Gavin, former Coolderry boss Ken Hogan, Birr's Michael Verney, K/K's Trevor Fletcher and Kinnitty's Colm Coughlan, to name just a few, will all take part in the preview. It is hoped to hold a raffle on the night and again, all proceeds will go to charity. Brian Whelahan of Whelahan's Bar is opening his doors for the preview night and has weighed in behind the concept.
It promises to be an enjoyable night with plenty of chat and debate ahead of the big games at the weekend while also helping out a very worthwhile and local charity.
Edenderry 1-12 Rhode 1-10
Edenderry won their 11th Tullamore Court Hotel, Offaly Senior Football title when they defeated neighbours Rhode, in a highyl entertaining game, in front of 4,630 supporters at O’Connor Pk on Sunday.
It may have been a very close run thing with only two points separating the sides at the end and Edenderry’s 12th point coming from sub, Gary Blong, deep in injury time but the better team won.
It was an excellent performance by Edenderry in a very exciting game of football and Rhode did not play well enough on the day to have won. They could have forced a replay as Niall McNamee and Anton Sullivan missed good late chances when just a point separated the sides but they had no complaints at the result.
Rhode made a dream start with a Ruari McNamee goal after just twenty seconds but it quickly became evident that Edenderry meant business as they worked hard at closing down opponents.
A brilliant 26th minute Derek Kelly goal helped Edenderry to a 1-7 to 1-6 half time lead and it was clear that they were not going away.
The sides were level on three occasions in the second half but man of the match, Sean Doyle and Jordan Hayes gave Edenderry a crucial two point lead with fifteen minutes left and they were able to hold on in a frantic and low scoring closing quarter.
EDENDERRY: Cormac Hurley; Alan Pender, Davd Hanlon, Sean Pender (Capt); Adam Mahon (0-1), Colm Byrne, Sean Moriarty (0-1, ‘45’); Richie Dalton (0-2), Stephen Guing; Keith McGuinness (0-1, f), Derek Kelly (1-1, 1f), Oran Lawton; Sean Doyle (0-4, 3f), Aaron McDonnell, Jordan Hayes (0-1). Subs - Ciarán Hurley for Lawton (h/t), Alex Kenny for McDonnell (48m), Mark Young for McGuinness (60m), Gary Blong (0-1) for Hayes (61m).
RHODE: Ken Garry; Jake Kavanagh, Eoin Rigney, James McPadden; Ciarán Heavey, Brian Darby, Eoin Byrne; Alan McNamee (Capt), Darren Garry (0-2); Niall Darby (0-1, f), Conor McNamee (0-1), Stephen Hannon; Anton Sullivan, Ruairi McNamee (1-1), Niall NcNamee (0-5, 1f). Subs - Glenn O’Connell for Byrne (37m), Shane Sullivan for Kavanagh (47m), Paul McPadden for Hannon (48m), Pauric Sullivan for D Garry (56m), Pascal Kellaghan for R McNamee (57m).
Referee: David Walsh.
Coolderry and St Rynagh’s will meet in the final of The Molloy Environmental Senior Hurling Championship for the first time since 1986, following their wins over Birr and Kilcormac/Killoughey respectively, in front of 4,376 supporters in O’Connor Pk on Sunday afternoon
Coolderry 2-15 Birr 1-10
Coolderry proved too strong for neighbours Birr in the opening game, eventually running out eight point winners after trailing by one at the break. Coolderry also hit 10 wides to Birr’s 7.
Aided by the wind in the first half Birr had the opening score courtesy of Eoghan Cahill after just a minute. The remainder of the half was very even with never more than two points between the sides and they were level on five occasions before Birr went in leading 0-9 to 0-8 at the break. Inside a minute of the resumption Birr had stretched their lead to two points, but amazingly they would add just one more score as Coolderry took control and added 2-7 to their total. The turning point of the game came in the 7th minute of the second half when Coolderry captain Brian Carroll goaled from close range. Two minutes later Kevin Connolly hit goal number two and despite Emmett Nolan hitting the net for Birr in the 47th minute Coolderry were never in trouble and qualified to play in their 44th senior final on a 2-15 to 1-10 scoreline
Teams & Scorers:
Coolderry: Stephen Corcoran, Stephen Connolly, Trevor Corcoran, Stephen Burke, Alan Corcoran, Joe Brady, Kevin Brady, David King 0-3, Barry Teehan, Conor Molloy, Kevin Connolly 1-0, Martin Corcoran, Brian Carroll (Capt), 1-1, Eoin Ryan 0-2, Damien Murray 0-8 (0-7f, 0-1 65’) Subs: Andrew Connolly 0-1 for M Corcoran
Birr: Brian Mullins, Michael Verney, Eoin Hayes, Conor O’Callaghan, Brian Watkins 0-1, Dylan Hayden, Sean Ryan, Barry Whelahan, Barry Harding 0-2, Eoghan Cahill 0-6 (0-5f), Rory Hanniffy (Capt), Brendan Murphy, Stephen Lonergan, Emmett Nolan 1-1, Colm Mulrooney Subs: Donal Ryan for Barry Whelahan, Thomas Bolger for Mulrooney, Aaron Whelahan for Cahill, Craig Taylor for Lonergan
Ref: Brian Gavin (Clara)
St Rynagh’s 1-22 Kilcormac/Killoughey 1-16
St Rynagh’s were never in trouble as they easily qualified for their third final in four years with a six point win over K/K in the second semi-final.
Playing with the aid of the wind Rynagh’s were quickest out of the blocks and hit the first four points of the game. K/K had cut the deficit back to two when Stephen Wynne goaled for The Banagher/Cloghan side in the 10th minute. By the 24th minute Rynagh’s were five points in front 1-7 to 0-5. However, in the final minutes of the half they hit six points without reply to go in leading 1-13 to 0-5 at the break.
K/K did not go down without a fight but failed to make serious indents in the Rynagh’s lead on the resumption. They did outscore the challengers 1-11 to 0-9 in the second half, their goal coming in the final minute from Ger Healion, but it was Rynagh’s who booked their place in the final to set up only their third meeting with Coolderry on county final day. St Rynagh’s won the deciders of 1965 & 68, while Coolderry were victorious in 1986
Teams & Scorers:
St Rynagh’s: Conor Clancy, Daniel Maloney, Dermott Shortt (Capt), Niall Wynne, Conor Hernon, Gary Conneely, Pat Camon, Sean Dolan, Nigel White, Matthew Maloney 0-1, Stephen Wynne 1-12 (0-8f, 0-1 65’), Ronan Hughes 0-2, Aidan Treacy, Joseph O’Connor 0-2, Stephen Quirke 0-4 Subs: Ben Conneely 0-1 for Hernon, Simon Óg Lyons for N White, Ger Scales for Treacy, Ger Rafferty for M Maloney, Paul Quirke for S Quirke
Kilcormac/Killoughey: Conor Slevin, Con Mahon, Ger Healion 1-0, Alan McConville, Enda Grogan, Peter Healion, Brian Leonard, Damien Kilmartin, Killian Leonard, Ciaran Slevin 0-9 (0-5f), Kevin Grogan, Peter Geraghty, James Gorman, Dan Currams 0-2, Cillian Kiely 0-3 Subs: Thomas Geraghty 0-2 for K Leonard, Cathal Mahon for Con Mahon
Ref: Tony Carroll (Kinnitty)
2016 Leinster Championship
Eirgrid Leinster U21 Football Championship 2016
1. Wicklow v Carlow
2. Wexford v Longford
3. Louth v Laois
4. Wexford/Longford v Westmeath
5. Kildare v Offaly
6. Louth/Laois v Wicklow/Carlow
7. Meath v Dublin
Match 4 v Match 5
Match 6 v Match
Bord Gais Energy Leinster U21 Hurling Championship 2016
1. Kilkenny v Westmeath
2. Dublin v Wexford
3. Carlow v Laois
4. Kildare v Offaly
5. Match 1 v Match 2
6. Match 3 v Match 4
Electric Ireland Leinster Minor Football Championship 2016
Kilkenny v Wexford
Dublin v Offaly
Kildare v Wicklow
Meath v Laois
Carlow v Louth
Westmeath v Longford
* Subsequent rounds to be decided by Leinster GAA CCC at a later date
Electric Ireland Leinster Minor Hurling Championship 2016
The 2015 Leinster finalists Kilkenny and Dublin are seeded into the next round
Wexford v Westmeath
Laois v Offaly
Carlow v Kildare
Wicklow v Meath
* Subsequent rounds to be decided by Leinster GAA CCC at a later date
For the second year in a row Rhode and Edenderry will meet in the Tullamore Court Hotel Offaly Senior Football final, after they both had easy wins over Clara and Tullamore respectively, in front of 2,304 supporters in O’Connor Pk on Sunday last.
Edenderry 2-14 Tullamore 2-7
Edenderry easily disposed of the challenge of Tullamore in the opening Tullamore Court Hotel Senior football S/F. In all ten different players contributed to Edenderry’s success and the scored 2-11 from play. First half goals from Adam Mahon and Sean Doyle gave Edenderry at 2-8 to 0-3 half time lead and despite being outscored 2-4 to 0-6 in the second period they never looked in trouble. Edenderry lined out without the suspended Richie Dalton, while Tullamore were without the services of the injured Paul McConway and Shane Dooley who was out of the country.
Teams and scorers:
Edenderry: Cormac Hurley, Alan Pender, David Hanlon, Sean Pender (Capt) 0-1, Adam Mahon 1-0, Colm Byrne 0-1, Sean Moriarty 0-2, Derek Kelly 0-3 (0-2f), Stephen Guing, Keith McGuinness 0-2, Mark Young, Oran Lawton, Sean Doyle 1-1 (0-1f), Aaron McDonnell 0-1, Jordan Hayes: Subs: Ciaran Hurley 0-1 for Hayes, Stuart Cullen 0-2 for Lawton, Alex Kenny for Derek Kelly, David Moloney for Young
Tullamore: Gavin Shiel, Dean Carroll, James Keane, Paul O’Toole, Declan Hogan, Mark Conlon, Ger Ward, Aaron Hensey 1-0, Michael Brazil, Nigel Bracken, Kevin Williamson 1-1 (0-1f), Shaun Martin, Johnny Maloney (Capt) 0-3, Pa Cosgrove 0-1, Johnny O’Donoghue 0-1 Subs: Adam Shelly for O’Donoghue, Shane Kelly for Ward, Steven Keogh for Cosgrove, Brian Hogan for Declan Hogan, Johnny Kavanagh 0-1 for S Martin, Pauric Brazil for N Bracken
Ref: Davy Walsh
Rhode 0-12 Clara 1-5
The final scoreline might indicate a close contest, but nothing could be further from the truth as Rhode coasted to yet another county final when they completely outclassed Clara in this second s/f played at O’Connor Pk on Sunday afternoon. Clara had the opening score of the game after 60 seconds, but didn’t score again for 46 minutes, by which stage Rhode had 10 points on the board. Rhode led by 0-6 to 0-1 at the break. Clara lined out without the injured Scott Brady, while Rhode were without the services of the suspended Anton Sullivan and the injured Niall Darby. Pauric Sullivan made an appearance for Rhode less than five months after cruciate knee surgery. Niall McNamee was once again the star of the show hitting 0-7.
Teams and scorers:
Rhode: Ken Garry, Jake Kavanagh, Eoin Rigney, James McPadden, Ciaran Heavy, Brian Darby 0-2, Eoin Byrne, Alan McNamee (Capt), Darren Garry, Glenn O’Connell, Conor McNamee, Stephen Hannon, Paul McPadden 0-2 (0-1f), Ruairi McNamee 0-1, Niall McNamee 0-7 (0-3f) Subs: Shane Sullivan for O’Connell, Gareth McNamee for Jake Kavanagh, Donal Hickey for Ruairi McNamee, Pauric Sullivan for Conor McNamee
Ref: Fergal Smyth