Saturday, August 11, 2012 will see a momentous day for all members of the O’Loughlin Gaels GAA Club, when the official opening of its new pitch facilities will take place at St. John’s Park, Hebron Road, Kilkenny. This development delivers state of the art playing surface facilities which will see the club now have two modern Croke Park size pitches, one Juvenile pitch and designated physical fitness training area. These playing surfaces along with a number of additional ball stops have been completed at a cost of €230,000 financed through the hard work of Club fundraisers and Department of Sport, Sports Capital Grants. These magnificent playing surfaces sit neatly on the twelve acres owned by the Club and adjacent to the existing Club House, gym hall, dressing rooms, bar and function rooms. The development of the pitches sprung from a Strategic Plan formulated by a club sub-committee in 2008. Following a successful application for Sports Capital Grants, fund raising and the appointment of Penturf Ltd as the contractor, work commenced in November, 2010 and was completed in the summer of 2011. During the period of construction all Club members co-operated with Sean Tyrrell and his Field Committee to ensure that ongoing Club fixtures could be accommodated. The Club received superb support from Paul Kinsella and Ned Quinn of the Kilkenny County Board in accessing overflow playing facilities during the construction period. The Pitch Development working group consisted of Eddie Buckley, Sean Tyrrell, Coleman Loughnane, John Holohan and Michael Nolan. Regular meetings and reviews of progress were held to ensure the facilities were finished to a high standard and also importantly completed on budget. John Skehan was hugely helpful in co-coordinating the new ball stops and this assistance proved invaluable. The official opening day celebrations will give all club players young and old, an opportunity to take part in a “La na Club” type celebration. Commencing at 2 pm, all players boy and girls from Under 6 upwards will play in scheduled tournament matches through out the day. The culmination of the days activities will be the official opening at 7 30 pm. To mark this special occasion the O’Loughlin Gaels Senior Team will play Tullaroan in a challenge match. There is a very active Club committee representing all facets of the Club, organising this special day. We look forward to welcoming our very many guests to share our special event. Also Club members look forward to welcoming all visiting GAA Clubs in the future to play on and enjoy these facilities. For the members of O’Loughlin’s it will be an opportunity to build on triumphs of the past and nurture the talents of future Club and County legends. Thank you to all our Club members for working to make our dreams come through and we look forward to Club members contribution in the coming phases of our Club’s development.
JUNIOR Bs RETAIN COUNTY LEAGUE CROWN - The O’Loughlin Gaels Junior B team added the County League title to their Northern League title for the second year in a row after they defeated , Southern champions, Kilmacow in Thomastown last Friday night. The O’Loughlins team were delighted to have ace free taker, Nigel Skehan, in their ranks and ,always the man for the big occasion , slotted over 9 points (7f) during the hour. Captain, Benny Cleere, had a solid hour between the posts and was well protected by Kevin O Brien, Mick Lambert and Joe Walsh in the full back line. In front of them, man of the match, Padraic Meaney, was ably assisted by centreback Stephen Tyrrell and Andy Cantwell. John Doyle and Paddy Deegan stood out at midfield while Billy Leydon and Kevin Morrissey were thorn in the southern defence for the hour. Barry Hogan, Evan Walsh and James O Keeffe worked very hard in the full forward line throughout the contest. Substitutes Michael Hennebery and Kevin McGarry excelled when introduced.Final score O’Loughlin Gaels 0.16 Kilmacow 0.11. Team; Benny Cleere, Kevin O Brien, Michael Lambert, Joe Walsh, Andy Cantwell, Stephen Tyrrell, Padraic Meaney, John Doyle(2), Paddy Deegan(1), Nigel Skehan(9,7f), Kevin Morrissey(2), Billy Leydon(1), Barry Hogan, Evan Walsh(1), James O Keeffe. Subs; Michael Hennebry, Kevin McGarry. Next up for these boys is a first round championship tie with neighbours St. Martins on Saturday August 4th in Canon Kearns Park, Castlecomer.
UNDER 16s IN A TITANIC BATTLE - It’s a commonly used cliche, but anyone who has witnessed the Under 16 League Semi Final and replay between Dicksboro and O’Loughlin Gaels, will agree that the future of Kilkenny hurling is very promissing. After 160 minutes of hurling, that has enthralled the large attendances, the sides remain level and will now go for a second replay on a date to be fixed. The skill level, from both sides, has had hurling people raving for the last fortnight (there was even a John Fenton style point, scored from over fifty yards from the ground). One would easily forget these lads are all Under 16. The next replay will be well worth taking in and of course make sure you lend your support to the John’s Parish men.
STREET LEAGUES ARE A MASSIVE SUCCESS - After two rounds of the St. Johns Parish “Hurling For All” Street League The Castlecomer Road area team are the only team on maximum points. The table reads Castlecomer Road area 8 points, Orchard Rovers 5 points, Altameadows 4 points, Johnswell 2 points and Hebron Heroes 1 point. Matches have been played in the green area between Glenbawn and Glendine Heights on Wednesday night last and on the green in Altamount Park and Shandon Park before very large and appreciative audiences. The organisers would like to thank the residents of those areas for allowing access to their estates. Next round of the Street League will be played in the pitch beside The Orchard House Bar on the Johnswell road on Wednesday night, August 1st at 7.30P.M.. All support is most welcome for these brilliant young hurlers. The final of the Street League will be played on August 11th at the official opening of the new pitches at St. John’s Park.
BEST OF LUCK - Best wishes to the O’Loughlin Gaels Under 13 team who play in the knockout stages of the Lisdowney 7s this weekend.
PAUDIE BUTLER COACHING COURSE - Acknowledged as the leader in hurling coaching, former national GAA hurling coach, Paudie Butler gave a coaching course to thirty juvenile coaches from O’Loughlin Gaels last Wednesday night. Coaches from Minor right down to Under 6s in both Hurling and Camogie were put through their paces by the Hurling guru. Juvenile Chairman of O’Loughlin Gaels, Bryan Skehan, has promised that Mr. Butler will be returning very soon for more intense classes with all the coaches.
O’LOUGHLIN’S LOTTO STILL €20,000 - The biggest prize in local LOTTO can be won in the O’Loughlin Gaels GAA club’s weekly draw . The draw , which costs only €2 to enter takes place every Tuesday night in the club bar at around 9.30P.M. All are welcome to the draw and tickets can be purchased all over Kilkenny City or from any officially appointed seller.
KILKENNY IN THE SEMI FINAL - O’Loughlin Gaels GAA Club will, as usual, be running a bus to Croke Park for the All Ireland Hurling Semi Final between Tipperary and Kilkenny. Social chairman ,John Joe Cullen will have a list left in the club bar this week. Names will only be taken with money. The price of a seat on the bus has yet to be determined but will announced when booking your seat. O’Loughlin’s Club secretary Margaret Hanlon advises that there will be a special club pass available to the first 50 ,fully paid up members of O’Loughlin Gaels, to the semi final. These tickets are great value at just €10 and are for the Davin stand. Names and money should be given to Margaret (087 2298028) as soon as possible.
Subscribe or register today to discover more from DonegalLive.ie
Buy the e-paper of the Donegal Democrat, Donegal People's Press, Donegal Post and Inish Times here for instant access to Donegal's premier news titles.
Keep up with the latest news from Donegal with our daily newsletter featuring the most important stories of the day delivered to your inbox every evening at 5pm.