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Injuries mount for hurlers ahead of trip to Cork



Date Published: {J}


REIGNING National League champions Galway will put their unbeaten record on the line when they travel to face Cork in a live televised third round clash at Páirc Uí Chaoimh on Sunday (2:30pm).


Although hit by a spate of injuries over the early months of the year, Galway can still be satisfied with their opening victories against Wexford and Offaly. But given just how disappointing both Leinster counties were in those games, this clash against Cork represents a big step up in class.

“No question about that,” agrees Galway manager John McIntyre. “Cork showed a lot of bottle in the game against Kilkenny in their last league outing. They fought back well after finding themselves in a difficult position at half-time and they were unlucky not to get a draw out of it.

“I also feel that after Galway putting them out of the championship in 2009, and after beating them in last year’s league final, we can expect a very determined Cork challenge on Sunday. So, yeah, this is our first real test of the league, but our players are performing well, confidence is high and the spirit is good in the camp. Regardless of the opposition, to put up a total score of 2-48 in our opening two matches is fairl going by any standards. You can’t beat winning; it’s great for self belief.”

Heading into this one, Galway have injuries worries in Tony Óg Regan (groin), Eanna Ryan (tonsillitis), and Cyril Donnellan (hamstring), while Gerard O’Halloran (Craughwell), Niall Donoghue (Kilbeacanty), David Burke (St. Thomas’) and Johnny Coen (Loughrea) all have U-21 club championship ties on Saturday. Futhermore, Niall Healy could be out for a month with a pulled hamstring.

“Obviously, it is not ideal to have three or four players involved in two games within 24 hours – there is also arisk of injury, never mind the fatigue,” says McIntyre. “However, we understand where the Hurling Board are coming from in the context of streamlining the U-21 championship.

“We all know the vast amount of fixtures the Board has to deal with, so something has to give along the way. It does pose difficulties for us, but nobody is going to start crying about it. We just have to accept the Board has a job to do when it comes to making fixtures and we have to get on with it.”

Of course, given the substantial injury list – which comprises of Portumna pair Damien Hayes and Joe Canning and Sarsfields duo Kevin Hynes and Joseph Cooney – Galway cannot afford any further injuries at present.

“Some people have said that our injuries will eventually catch up with us, but we will just have to wait and see,” says the Galway boss. “Joe Canning is out for a few more weeks, but we have not ruled him out of the league completely. He has a foot injury which is going to take time and we are prepared to give him that time to recover.”

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

Galway in Days Gone By

The way we were – Protecting archives of our past



A photo of Galway city centre from the county council's archives

People’s living conditions less than 100 years ago were frightening. We have come a long way. We talk about water charges today, but back then the local District Councils were erecting pumps for local communities and the lovely town of Mountbellew, according to Council minutes, had open sewers,” says Galway County Council archivist Patria McWalter.

Patria believes we “need to take pride in our history, and we should take the same pride in our historical records as we do in our built heritage”. When you see the wealth of material in her care, this belief makes sense.

She is in charge of caring for the rich collection of administrative records owned by Galway County Council and says “these records are as much part of our history as the Rock of Cashel is. They document our lives and our ancestors’ lives. And nobody can plan for the future unless you learn from the past, what worked and what didn’t”.

Archivists and librarians are often unfairly regarded as being dry, academic types, but that’s certainly not true of Patria. Her enthusiasm is infectious as she turns the pages of several minute books from Galway’s Rural District Councils, all of them at least 100 years old.

Part of her role involved cataloguing all the records of the Councils – Ballinasloe, Clifden, Galway, Gort, Loughrea, Mountbellew, Portumna and Tuam. These records mostly consisted of minutes of various meetings.

When she was cataloguing them she realised their worth to local historians and researchers, so she decided to compile a guide to their content. The result is For the Record: The Archives of Galway’s Rural District Councils, which will be a valuable asset to anybody with an interest in history.

Many representatives on these Councils were local personalities and several were arrested during the political upheaval of the era, she explains.

And, ushering in a new era in history, women were allowed to sit on these Rural District Councils – at the time they were not allowed to sit on County Councils.

All of this information is included in Patria’s introductory essay to the attractively produced A4 size guide, which gives a glimpse into how these Rural Councils operated and the way political thinking changed in Ireland during a short 26-year period. In the early 1900s, these Councils supported Home Rule, but by 1920, they were calling for full independence and refusing to recognise the British administration.

“I love the tone,” says Patria of the minutes from meetings. “The language was very emotive.”

That was certainly true of the Gort Rural District Council. At a meeting in 1907, following riots in Dublin at the premiere of JM Synge’s play, The Playboy of the Western World the councillors’ response was vehement. They recorded their decision to “protest most emphatically against the libellous comedy, The Playboy of the Western World, that was belched forth during the past week in the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, under the fostering care of Lady Gregory and Mr Yeats. We congratulate the good people of Dublin in howling down the gross buffoonery and immoral suggestions that are scattered throughout this scandalous performance.


For more from the archives see this week’s Tribunes here

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Archive News

Galway have lot to ponder in poor show



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013




GALWAY’S first serious examination of the 2013 season rather disturbingly ended with a rating well below the 40% pass mark at the idyllic, if rather Siberian, seaside setting of Enniscrone on Sunday last.

The defeat cost Galway a place in the FBD League Final against Leitrim and also put a fair dent on their confidence shield for the bigger tests that lie ahead in February.

There was no fluke element in this success by an understrength Sligo side and by the time Leitrim referee, Frank Flynn, sounded the final whistle, there wasn’t a perished soul in the crowd of about 500 who could question the justice of the outcome.

It is only pre-season and last Sunday’s blast of dry polar winds did remind everyone that this is far from summer football, but make no mistake about it, the match did lay down some very worrying markers for Galway following a couple of victories over below par third level college teams.

Galway did start the game quite positively, leading by four points at the end of a first quarter when they missed as much more, but when Sligo stepped up the tempo of the game in the 10 minutes before half-time, the maroon resistance crumbled with frightening rapidity.

Some of the statistics of the match make for grim perusal. Over the course of the hour, Galway only scored two points from play and they went through a 52 minute period of the match, without raising a white flag – admittedly a late rally did bring them close to a draw but that would have been very rough justice on Sligo.

Sligo were backable at 9/4 coming into this match, the odds being stretched with the ‘missing list’ on Kevin Walsh’s team sheet – Adrian Marren, Stephen Coen, Tony Taylor, Ross Donovan, David Kelly, David Maye, Johnny Davey and Eamon O’Hara, were all marked absent for a variety of reasons.

Walsh has his Sligo side well schooled in the high intensity, close quarters type of football, and the harder Galway tried to go through the short game channels, the more the home side bottled them up.

Galway badly needed to find some variety in their attacking strategy and maybe there is a lot to be said for the traditional Meath style of giving long, quick ball to a full forward line with a big target man on the edge of the square – given Paul Conroy’s prowess close to goal last season, maybe it is time to ‘settle’ on a few basics.

Defensively, Galway were reasonably solid with Gary Sice at centre back probably their best player – he was one of the few men in maroon to deliver decent long ball deep into the attacking zone – while Finian Hanley, Conor Costello and Gary O’Donnell also kept things tight.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Archive News

Real Galway flavour to intermediate club hurling battle in Birr



Date Published: 23-Jan-2013


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