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PRO GAA Scene November 26th 2014 2014-11-26 10:46:00

Declan O’Sullivan – A truly great player

The retirement of Declan O’Sullivan last week sees the departure of another outstanding player who gave tremendous service to Kerry in the green and gold. Declan, who made his championship debut against Tipperary in 2003, retires having won every honour available to him in a career that was finally cut short by injury.  He has the distinction of being one of only 7 players to lift the Sam Maguire more than once (2006 and 2007) following in the footsteps of fellow Kerrymen such as Dick Fitzgerald, and Joe Barrett and also has the distinction of starting in every position on the forward line for Kerry in senior championship.

In all, he made 70 Championship appearances for Kerry scoring 8-56 and it is very fitting that he ended his career on the field of play in the recent All Ireland defeat of Donegal. Though plagued with injury this year he still played an outstanding role in Kerry’s championship success and few will forget his display in the Munster final defeat of Cork in Páirc Uí Chaoimh in July.

The winner of three consecutive GAA All Stars between 2007 and 2009, he also made 57 League appearances scoring  8-83. On the Club scene he was no less successful winning County and Munster Junior medals and four senior county championship titles with divisional side South Kerry.

The many glowing tributes paid to the Dromid Pearses man during the past week, are testament to the esteem in which he was held by his peers in particular.

O’Sullivan’s retirement sees him follow in the footsteps of such fellow legends as Tomás Ó Sé, Eoin Brosnan and Paul Galvin all of whom have hung up their boots in the past year and it goes without saying that his departure will be a huge loss not only to his beloved Kerry but to gaelic football in general.

To Declan, his family Michelle, Ollie and Robbie, I extend a sincere thank you on behalf of the Gaels of Kerry and indeed beyond and hopefully he will be able to see out his career with Dromid Pearses.

All Ireland Presentation Gala Banquet

Tickets for the All Ireland Medal Presentation Gala Banquet will be available to purchase from December 1st from the office at Austin Stack Park and at the Kerry GAA Store in the Killarney Outlet Centre. Tickets are limited and are on a first come first served basis  and people who wish to attend  are encouraged to purchase early.

Clubs intending to reserve a table should contact the County Board office and tickets will be sent  by post on receipt of a cheque.

The banquet is on in the INEC, Killarney on Friday December 19th commencing at 7pm. Both the Minor and Senior All Ireland Football medals will be presented on the night. 

Special Room Rates have been arranged for the night in both The Brehon and The Gleneagle Hotels

Further information can be got from any one of the organising Commitee of Eamon O'Sullivan, Joe Crowley and Leona Twiss.

Credit Union Senior Football League

While five games have yet to be played in Division 3 of the Credit Union Senior Football League, one game was played last weekend, the final round game between Ardfert and Scartaglen that saw the Intermediate champions secure their Division 3 status with a 2-9 to 1-7 victory.  While Templenoe have already been promoted as champions, and Scartaglen have been relegated to Division 4 next year, all other promotion and relegation issues have yet to be decided in this Division. St Marys (14) and Glenflesk (13) are in pole position for the two remaining promotion places with Brosna (12) ready to pounce should there be any slip up by those two. Its no less intriguing at the other end of the table; Dromid Pearses are in a very precarious position on 7 points and above them An Ghaeltacht, Ballymac and Lispole are all on tender hooks with 8 points.  The final round game between Dromid and Lispole will certainly have a big bearing on the relegation issue. The other games see Annascaul play Glenflesk, An Ghaeltacht play Keel, Ballymac play Brosna and St Marys play Templenoe. Those games will be played on December 14th.

Meanwhile, the outstanding promotion and relegation issues in the other Divisions  got under way last weekend.

In Division 4, the three way playoff for the third promotion place saw Fossa and Castlegregory play out an exciting draw after extra time in Kileen so that game will now be refixed with the winners  playing Beaufort for the right to play in Division 3 next season.

In Division 5, the victory by Dr Crokes in Moyvane means that they are promoted to Division 4 as champions, pipping St Senans who received a walk-over from Sneem Derrynane in their final game.

Meanwhile Ballydonoghue and Renard, who finished level on points for the third promotion place will playoff for promotion on Sunday next in Milltown at 2pm.

With Austin Stacks in Munster Club action, the Division 1 final between Austin Stacks and Dr Crokes is due to be played in Connolly Park on December 14th, however, both clubs are in discussion re playing on another date due to unavailability of players on both sides.

Austin Stacks go in search of Munster Club glory

County champions Austin Stacks head to Páirc Uí Rinn on Sunday next in search of Munster Club Final glory when they take on The Nire from Waterford in the provincial final (2pm).  Invariably, the Stacks give good value for money in the provincial series and one has only to recall their three game thriller with Nemo Rangers in 1975/76 when the Cork side advanced after two replays and two extra times having been played. They have not won a provincial final since 1976 however, the same year that they subsequently went on to claim All Ireland glory with such household names as the O’Keeffes, Ger Power, Mikey Sheehy and Denny Long in their midst.  The Nire will pose strong and tough opposition but the Tralee side will be expected to add to their trophy haul for the year.

Ardfert in Munster Intermediate Final

Kerry champions Ardfert face Valley Rovers of Cork in the Munster Intermediate  final on Saturday next in Fitzgerald Stadium at 2pm. The experience of having played Spa in the Kerry final in the Stadium should stand to Ardfert but the Cork outfit will be no pushover.

Brosna advance to Munster Junior Final

Congratulations to Brosna who have advanced to the Munster Junior Club Final following victory over Millstreet of Cork in the semi final on Sunday last. What a few weeks it has been for the North Kerry Club. Written off as no hopers in both the semi final and final of the county competition, last Sunday was a dream come through with over 2,000 spectators flocking to the local sportsfield. Certainly heady times for Brosna who now play Limerick champions Glin in the final on December 7th in Mallow.

Novice Shield Final

The final of the Novice Shield between Valentia and Ballydonoghue will be played on Sunday next. The winners will represent Kerry in the Munster Junior “B” competition run by the Knockaderry club in Limerick.

Kerry GAA Website

A major revamp of the official Kerry GAA Website is nearing completion right now. Over the past eight months or so a committee has been working towards the building of a site that will reflects the county’s high profile within the Association. While this is still very much a work in progress, we would welcome any constructive comments or ideas to administrator1.kerry@gaa.ie

McNamee Awards 2014

Applications for the 2014 McNamee Awards are now being accepted. It should be noted that only work published or completed in the 2014 calendar year is eligible for consideration. The awards scheme will include the following headings:

•Best GAA Publication - To cover all GAA Publications, including Club publications, County Yearbooks and general histories.

•Best GAA Website - Covering the websites of all the Association’s units.

•Best Amateur Photograph  - As above but open to amateur / non-working photographers

•Best Programme - To cater for all match day programmes produced for any level of the Association.

•Irish Language Award / Gradam na Gaeilge - To recognise excellence in the field of Irish language GAA journalism across all media/Aitheantas do ard-chaighdeán  iriseoireachta,  bainteach le CLG,  in aon bhrainse de mheáin na Gaeilge   

•Club Project Award (Digital & Social Media) - A club only award, this category aims to acknowledge excellence in a one-off project across all forms of public relations, communication and digital activity.

All entries should be marked “GAA McNamee Awards 2014” and addressed for the attention of Head of Media Relations Alan Milton, Croke Park, Dublin 3 or emailed to mediarelations@gaa.ie.  Entrants should also clearly state what category they are submitting their entry under.

The awards will be presented at Croke Park in January 2015 by GAA President Liam Ó Neill.  Award winners will be contacted in due course with further details in relation to the awards banquet.

Scór na nÓg

Tráth na gCeisteanna (Scór na nÓg) took place on Saturday last in the Intermediate (Carnegie) School, Cill Orglin. Aon chlub déag a ghlac páirt sa chomórtas. After an exciting evening of questions and answers the Kerry champions of 2014, An Spá (Cill Airne), emerged victorious, despite strong challenges from several clubs, best of which were the Cill Chuimín scholars. An Spá have earned the right to represent The Kingdom in the All-Ireland final ar Lá ‘le Vailintín. We wish them well in their preparations and hope that they’ll bring another title to their parish. B’é Leona Twiss-Uí Bhriain máistreas na gceisteanna agus b’iad Suzanne Ní Laoghaire (rúnaí), Áine Íde Inglis (cisteoir), Jackie Breathnach agus Síle Mhic Charthaigh a meitheal oibre. Thanks to the Carnegie School management for use of the premises.

The Scór na nÓg county finals will be held at 2pm on Sunday next, 30th November, in Glenbeigh. Táthar ag súil le ardchaighdeán sna comórtais uile! Each District Board should have forwarded winners' names to the county secretary, Suzanne Ní Laoghaire (secretary.scor.kerry@gaa.ie), by now. Costas isteach: ocht/ceithre euro.

Allianz  Cumann na mBunscol Final Results

Division 1: C.B.S. Tralee 1-3  Gaelscoil Mhic Easmainn  1-4.

Two Teacher Final:  Raheen 1-12 Scoil Mhaolcheadair 3-10.

Three Teacher Final:  Knockanes 3-7 Brosna 3-8.

 4/5 Teacher Final:  Lisselton  5-9  Glenbeigh  9-6.  

Hurling News with Tommy O’Connor of the PR & Marketing Committee

Senior and Minor Hurlers to be feted this weekend

The Kerry Senior and Minor Hurlers – winners of the 2014 Allianz Hurling League Division 2A and the All-Ireland Minor ‘B’ Championship titles – will receive their medals at a function in the Fells Point Hotel, Tralee on this Saturday, 29th November.  Robert Frost, Cathaoirleach, Comhairle na Mumhan will make the presentations. Two national titles at any level on the inter-county front for Kerry  in hurling is a great achievement  and all the players involved deserve due credit for the huge effort they put in since early January.

The seniors, under new manager, Eamon Kelly, and selectors Brian O’Meara, D.J. Leahy and Tom O’Connell won the Final of Division 2A of the League on Sunday, 6th April at Semple Stadium, Thurles with a 3 - 16 to 3 - 13 win over Carlow. They also reached the Christy Ring Cup final but went down by just 2 points, 4 - 18 to 2 - 22 to Kildare.

Kerry won the Minor ‘B’ Final played at Nenagh on Saturday, 6th September with a 2 - 18 to 1 - 14 win over Meath. Well done to all the players and to manager, Ian Brick, and his selectors Aidan Mahony (St. Brendan’s) and Stephen Goggin (Causeway).

Interesting both captains came from St. Brendan’s, John Egan in the senior and Fionán Mackessy in the minor, a great honour for the club.

Under 21

Causeway have qualified for the final of the Acorn Life Co. Under 21 hurling final. Their scheduled semi-final did not go ahead last weekend as South Kerry conceded the game in advance.

St. Brendan’s and Lixnaw are due to meet in the second semi-final on this Sunday, details to be confirmed.

Fixtures

The following games are down for decision on this Saturday, 29th November, both at 2.00p.m. In the semi-final of the Co. minor league, Abbeydorney are at home to Lixnaw while in the semi-final of the Co. League, Division 3, Austin Stacks play Kenmare at Connolly Park.

Clubs

Tralee Parnell’s will hold their A.G.M. on this Wednesday, 26th November in the Meadowlands Hotel, Tralee, commencing at 8.00p.m. Anyone interested in promoting hurling in the Tralee area is most welcome.

Awards Nights

On this Friday, 28th November, the South Kerry Hurling Bord na nÓg will hold their 4th annual hurling awards night in the Killarney Plaza Hotel, commencing at 8.00p.m. There will be a special presentation to the South Kerry members of the victorious Kerry minor hurling team as well as to members of the various Hurling Development squads who represented their South Kerry clubs during the year. Further details at www.southkerryhurling.com

In the South Kerry Under 14 hurling championship final played last Sunday, Rathmore had a 1 - 7 to 1 - 4 win over Kilgarvan. Well done to all involved.

On the same evening the North Kerry Hurling Board will hold their annual awards presentations at Ballyroe Heights Hotel, commencing at 8.00p.m. Player of the match awards for all underage finals will be presented together with the annual Hall of Fame award honouring a former member of the Board.