IOMAINT Eire Og drew with Glenealy, 2-14 to 1-17 in their match in the league stages of the Dacia Cars SHC in Joule Park on Saturday evening last. Based on the history of the clubs in the competition to that date one would not have given the seasiders a snowballs chance in hell of coming near such an achievement. Glenealy had been unbeaten while Na Clocha Liatha lads had lost 2 of their games and had been extremely lucky in scraping past Carnew by the minimum of margins the previous week. For the pessimistic among us the fixture had the air of lambs to the slaughter about it. The team taking to the field against Glenealy, whilst comprising essentially the same personnel, luckily bore no resemblance in action to that which played against Carnew. Gone was the fumbling and foostering, poor handling and striking which characterised that game, instead we had a team transformed playing with confidence, skill and coherence.
Eire Og were in attack mode from the throw-in and, to everyones eye-rubbing astonishment, were (thanks to a long-distance goal from Anto Byrne and another from the Pooch after a pass from Michael Walsh) 2-0 to 0-1 ahead on 6 minutes. The expected Glenealy fight-back was immediate but thanks to the committed engagement of the Eire Og lads throughout the field it did not take the feared form of a deluge of scores and instead the gap on the scoreboard was only very gradually whittled down. The teams were level at the short whistle.
The 2nd half was closely fought but with Glenealy maintaining a narrow lead through the 30 minutes. Gavin Parslow brought the teams to parity with a point from play deep in injury time.
The two sets of players are to be commended for both the quality of their play and its honesty. This was a contest which would bring joy to any hurling enthusiasts heart for its wonderful sportsmanship and the intensity of its man-to-man engagement (untainted by any pre-arranged system). Buochas leo go lir for giving us such an enjoyable game.
PEIL NA GCAILINI The u-16s league campaign ended last week with a 6-17 to 4-13 win at home against An Tochar. While it might be somewhat dramatic to describe the campaign as having begun in a whimper and having ended in a blaze of glory it did mirror this description.
Due to injuries etc.the team took some time to get it together and early on lost some games they should have been well capable of winning and therein lay their failure to top the table. On the other hand the girls found their form at the latter end of the league and in their final games registered an unbroken run including a 5 point win over league winners Newtown of victories.
The game against An Tochar was a hugely entertaining ding dong battle which did not relent in intensity over its absorbing duration. The opening period was particularly close fought and Eire Og counted themselves lucky to be 2 points, 4-9 to 4-7, ahead at the break.
Goals in ladies football are easier to come by than in the mens game so they do not have the same import as leis na fir. Hence the final score, 6-17 to 4-13, if taken on its face value, would give a distorted view of the 2nd half proceedings and would do scant justice to the efforts of a gallant An Tochar team.
The teams next match will be in the championship which is scheduled to begin about the middle of August.