BALLYSTEEN GAA CLUB NOTES
Our AGM will be held this Sunday at 7pm at the Clubhouse. All members are encouraged to attend as we make preparations for the coming year.
The Club extends it’s congratulations to Cathal McDaid & Amanda Fitzgerald on getting married this past weekend. Before moving to Australia, Cathal played football with the Club
Year in Review
In 2019, Ballysteen GAA fielded teams in Senior, Junior, U21 & Minor. Throughout the year there were many impressive performances and victories, however, silverware has eluded us. Below is a quick recap of all of our team’s activities throughout the year.
Captained by Mark Ranahan & Danny Neville, our Senior Footballers, competed in the Senior Football Championship, West Senior Football Championship and All County Football League Divison 1 in 2019. In early 2019, the team travelled to London to play a challenge match against Thomas McCurtains in Goodmayes. It was a historic occasion as the club played its first game on foreign soil. The following day, the club were guests of London GAA as they played Limerick in the opening round of the National Football League. Special mention to Maurice Somers who helped arrange the fixutre with his former club.
In the Senior Football Championship, we were drawn in a tough group alongside Ballylanders, Monaleen, Adare, Fr. Casey’s and St. Senan’s. We started the campaign with two impressive victories over Ballylanders and Monaleen before the break for the inter county season. We returned to action in late July where defeats to Adare and Fr. Casey’s meant it was a win or bust showdown against near neighbours St. Senan’s. The team duly delivered and swept aside the challenge to qualify for the Quarter Finals. In the Quarter Final we faced Newcastle West, despite performing brilliantly on the day, a late surge from Newcastle West propelled them to victory and end our interest in the competition.
In the Senior West Championship, we qualified for the final after defeating Rathkeale in the Semi Final. St. Kieran’s were our opponents in the final and unfortunately on the day, they got the key scores that saw them win on a final scoreline of 3-11 to 2-5.
The County League competition gave us the chance to give games to our panel of players. Graduates from the underage system played in their first games at adult level. We finished the competition in the middle of the table meaning we will once again be playing Division 1 football in 2020.
Ballysteen GAA wishes to thank the Senior management team of Cathal Anglim, Anthony Ryan, Danny Fitzgerald & John Neville for their hard work over the last two seasons.
Our Junior Football team were managed by Alan Kehoe & Shane Hallinan had an eventful year competing in the West League and West Junior B Football Championship. In the West League, we reached the Semi Final but lost out to a very strong Granagh-Ballingarry.
In the West Championship, there was plenty of drama. In the quarter final, a late point in the dying light, from David Holland saw us emerge one-point victors over St. Senan’s. In the Semi Final, we avenged our defeat from Granagh-Ballingarry in the West League with a three-point win.
The West Final brought great excitement to the club as we looked to reclaim a title, we last won in 2014. We faced a very strong Kncokaderry team in the final under the lights of Mick Neville Park. An enthralling game finished level and extra time couldn’t find a winner either.
The replay took us to Athea in November and despite a strong start to the game, Knockaderry managed to carve out a hard-earned victory by five points. Our players, captained by Pakie Neville, were desolate at the full-time whistle but the experience gained for our younger players, will no doubt strengthen their resolve to return and win at higher levels.
At time of writing our U21’s are in the middle of their Championship campaign. Drawn in a tough group that features Newcastle West, Monaleen, Rathkeale and Galbally, we will have plenty to do to qualify but with experience on the sidelines with Pa Ranahan, Maurice Somers & Patrick Moran managing the side, we hope to qualify for the knockout stages.
Our Minor team under the guidance of Mark Ranahan and Danny Neville, qualified for the Premier Minor County knock out stages. Our campaign ended following a defeat to St. Kieran’s in the Quarter Final.
Our boys performed excellently, every player to a men had to be commended for the effort put in. An injury to one of our senior players early on didn’t help our cause and we excited the competition at the hands of a strong St. Kieran’s side. This team were the
first to represent Ballysteen at the Premier Minor grade in over 15 years. A credit to the club, a credit to the parish.
Fitzgerald, Sean Hanley, Sean McMahon, Kieran Neville, Eoin Condon, Alan McGrath, Eddie Murphy O Connor, Kevin Walsh, Paudie McMahon, Luke Gammell, Kevin Barry, Sam Duggan, Tomás Sheahan, David O’Shaughnessy, Callum Ryan, Niall Barry, Paul O’Shaughnessy, Joey
Rushe, Liam O’Cathasaigh, Cormac O’Keefe.
Our Club was represented at inter-county level by the following players:
U20: Cillian Ferris, Jason Daly
Minor: Eddie Murphy O’Connor, Tomas Sheahan.
Cillian was made Captain of the Limerick U20 team and led the team to their first victory in Munster in a few years with a victory over Tipperary in Thurles.
Well done to each player, on what is an outstanding achievement for them and their families.
The Club held an end of season dinner dance at the end of November in the Ballintemple Inn. A great night was had as we celebrate the 40th anniversary of our County Junior A Championship victory.
While silverware has eluded us throughout this season, the level of performance and application of the players & management has been exceptional. The Club thanks all its players and mentors who have represented the Club throughout the year in a professional and sporting manner.
Thanks to our jersey sponsors Ryan’s Centra. Thanks to all of members and supporters who have followed the Club throughout the year from home and abroad.
Special thanks to Ed Somers, who made the trip to Ballysteen earlier in the year. Ed has been a keen supporter of the Club since he traced his roots back to the village. Upon his visit, Ballysteen GAA made a presentation to Ed to mark this occasion and recognise his continued support of the Club.
Thanks to everyone who took part in our Golf Classic as part of our fundraising this year. The competition had joint winners with the teams captained by Tom Stokes and Paul McDonagh tying their scores. Thanks to Newcastle West Golf Club for hosting the event over two days.
The Club also wishes to thank the volunteers who helped in the background running of the Club throughout the year. This work goes un-noticed through the year, yet without it, our teams and players would not be unable to take to the field.
With that we look forward to 2020 with renewed optimism following our performances this year.