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Saturday 10th November 2001

Congratulations to our senior footballers who, on Sunday last, won our 21st county title beating Aherlow in the final at Semple Stadium. On arrival back to Fethard on Sunday evening the O’Dwyer Cup and the team paraded around the town and each player was presented to the general public holding the cup aloft in front of the Town Hall. Our next game is on Saturday 17th November at 2.30pm away to Drom / Broadford (Limerick champions) in Drumcollogher, Co. Limerick.
Our team on Sunday last was Paul Fitzgerald, Michael Ahearne, Cian Maher, Tomas Anglim, Willie Morrissey, Michael Quinlan, Stephen O’Donnell, Brian Burke, Aiden Fitzgerald (0-1), Glen Burke (0-3) 2f, Tommy Sheehan (0-4), John Paul Looby, Conor McCarthy (1-2), Miceál Spillane, Damien Byrne (0-2). Subs used were Kenneth O’Donnell, Carl Maher (0-1), Jimmy O’Meara and Kenneth Byrne. Other subs: Tommy Gahan, Michael Carroll, Brian Coen, Michael Dillon, Martin Ryan and Willie O’Meara. To our selectors we are truly grateful — Tom Mansfield (manager), Danny Kane, Pat Sheehan and Jimmy O’Shea. We wish them the best in our quest for a Munster title.
The intermediate football replay on Saturday 10th November did not go our way and we suffered our worst defeat of this year losing to Ballyporeen on a scoreline 4-11 (2-5) to Fethard 1-7 (1-4), played in Clonmel. Our team was: Tommy Gahan, Martin Ryan, Michael Ryan, Philly Blake, Jason Nevin, Willie O’Meara (1-0), Nicky Murphy, John Hurley, Chris Coen (0-1), Brian Coen (0-2), Shay Ryan (0-1), Michael Dillon (0-1), Martin Coen, Michael O’Riordan (0-1), Brendan Brett (0-1f). Subs used: Alan Phelan, Conor O’Donnell, Kevin O’Donnell and Philly Croke. Our other sub was Owen Doyle. Again we would like to thank our selectors for their time and effort.
This concludes our south championships for 2001, winning under 21 ‘A’ football & under 21 ‘B’ hurling titles and also a South League senior football title.
We had no winner of our £700 lotto jackpot and no match threes. Five lucky dips at £ 20 each were drawn —
Jim Carroll, Mary Murphy,
Mary Ann Keane, Jim O’Meara
and Stephen O’Donnell. The numbers drawn were 11, 16, 20 and 22.
Back to Sunday last in Thurles where We would like to compliment both teams last Sunday in Thurles for there turn out, particularly for there dress attire. Thanks to all who helped to make it an enjoyable occasion — Coolmore Stud Farm, Martin Burke Bridge Bar, Tom Anglim and Ronan Industries.
There were just a few minor hiccups in Thurles that we would like to mention:
(a) No parade (after having been informed and prepared for same).
(b) Both the hurling teams (for the hurling final) were left out on to the pitch during the presentation of the O’Dwyer cup to Fethard.
(c) The programme coverage for the football final was very limited.
(d) No addresses of football team printed on programme (addresses having been submitted)

The numbers drawn on Tuesday 6th November were 3, 6, 12 and 18. We had no Jackpot winner and 4 ‘Match 3’ winners. Each of the following received £25: John Pollard, Rocklow Road, Fethard; Eddie O'Brien, The Square, Fethard; T.J. Sheehan, Killusty and Brendan Donovan, Coolmoyne. Next weeks jackpot is £4,900.

Killusty Soccer Club will hold their Annual Dinner Dance on Saturday November 17th at Minella Hotel, Clonmel. Tickets are available from any member of the club. We would like to say ‘well done’ to the Fethard senior football team on a great victory in the County Final and wish them all the best in the Munster Club Championship.

We had two teams from our club take part in the Tipperary Regional Youth Services soccer tournament in Tipp Town on Sunday last. Over twelve strong teams took part on the day. Our team ‘A’, consisting of the following players, Emmet Burke, Shane Aylward, Dan Lonergan, John Conway, Noel Walsh and Ronan O’Meara, reached the semifinals and were beaten 2-1 by Gortnahoe who also went on to win the competition. Our second ‘B’ team of Darren O’Meara, David Conway, Aaron Kelly, John Hannigan, Philip Ryan and Alan McCormack, just missed qualifying for the semifinal stages by goal difference. Well done to both teams on their great performance and behaviour on the day.
Finally, thanks to Tony Askins for driving the bus and being team coach. Thanks also to Claire Hannigan for all the hard work she has put into both teams. Well done Tony and Claire.
Our next outing will be to a Variety Show in Oola on Friday 23rd November, where our club will be represented by two groups — one in modern dance and the other in singing.
Our club is open every Saturday night in Fethard Ballroom from 7.30pm to 9.30pm. We appeal for more adults to get involved in the running of the club as this would lighten the workload and help us all out a lot. Please feel free to call in any Saturday night or contact any of the club leaders.

Fethard Historical Society will hold a lecture entitled ‘The Grubbs of South Tipperary” delivered by Clonmel historian Michael Ahearn, in the Abymill Theatre at 8.30pm on Wednesday 21st November. Admission is £3 and all are welcome.
The society will hold their annual Christmas Dinner at Slievenamon Golf Club, Clonacody, on Tuesday 11th December at 8.30pm. The price per person is £18.50 and those interested in attending are asked to confirm their booking, on or before Tuesday 27th November (next committee meeting), with Chris Nevin (Tel: 052 32389) or Catherine O’Flynn (Tel: 052 31826).

The busy racing schedule continues as, last week, club members competed in both the schools cross-country in Clonmel, and the Munster uneven aged cross-country championships in Cork. In the schools competition, the club produced no less than six individual race winners, the star of the show being Bernadette Costello, winning her first race in fine style. The other winners were Michelle Ryall, Elaine Kennedy, Conor Prendergast, John Lalor and Darragh Dwyer. In the teams event, Fethard and Moyglass schools dominated the medium and large schools categories. Nano Nagle School had their first big victory as the 3rd and 4th class girls were led to victory by Siobhán O’Brien in 2nd place, Aisling Dwyer in 4th place, followed by team mates Sarah McManus, Emma Fleming, Jane Kenny and Laura Rice. The Moyglass girls were not to be outdone as they completed a remarkable 1st, 2nd and 3rd to win gold in the medium schools section. That team was Michelle Ryall, Hannah Trehy, Aisling O’Connor and Fiona Walsh.
Fethard 3rd and 4th class boys proved themselves to be the top large school. the gold medal winners were Ben Walsh (individual silver), Andy Walsh, Darren Thompson, Damian Morrissey, Owen Healy, Kevin Hayes, Jerome Ahearne, Alan Lyons, Eoin Prout and John Lalor. The 5th and 6th class boys won the ‘B’ section with the following team: Dick Walsh, Michael Costello, Robert Ahearne and Darragh Dwyer. Nano Nagle School 5th and 6th class girls also won their ‘B’ section with: Lisa Anglim, Kate O’Brien and Bernadette Costello. Moyglass continued to boss the medium schools category with victories for their 5th and 6th class boys and girls, and their 3rd and 4th class boys. The medal winners were: Elaine Kennedy, Ciara O’Connor, Kate Costigan, Rebecca Ryan (silver), Wayne Laslett, Lolo Trehy (bronze), Seamie O’Keeffe, Ryan Laslett and Conor Prendergast.
In the Munster championships on Sunday the medal haul continued as the gifted John Lalor won silver with a superb run in the boys under/9. John also led the Tipperary team to bronze medals in the inter-county competition. Mary Gleeson then copper fastened her position as one of the county’s top athletes by taking the bronze medal with a marvellous performance in the girls under/11 race. In the boys under/11 race, Shane Gorey continued his fine form by coming home 4th, captaining the Tipperary team to a comprehensive victory.
Well done to all our runners on yet another great team performance. Our next challenge is the County Uneven Aged Championships in Moyne on next Sunday 18th November. All affiliated athletes are eligible to compete and competitors should be in Moyne by 11am.

Sarah Gleeson, Brookhill, has been selected on the Munster girl’s under/16 hockey team. Best of luck to Sarah and her team when they take part in the inter-provincial under/16 hockey championships due to be played on the last weekend in November.

Best wishes to Jimmy and Dolly Browne who celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary recently. Now resident in Dublin, Jimmy and Dolly (formerly Dolly O’Flynn, Killerk) returned to Fethard to celebrate the ruby anniversary. Having renewed their marriage vows in Lisronagh church, they were later joined by family and friends for anniversary celebrations in the Bridge Bar on Saturday night last.

The schedule for praying The Rosary for the repose of the souls of our faithful departed on this coming Sunday, 18th November, are as follows: Red City Cemetery at 3pm, and Rathcoole and Tullamaine Cemetery at 3.30pm.
Parishioners are encouraged to attend at least one of the locations each Sunday.

The Fethard Players will stage the sparkling comedy “Drama at Inish” by Lennox Robinson in the Abymill Theatre, Fethard, from Sunday 25th November. This evergreen play, first produced in 1933 at the Abbey Theatre, Dublin, is one of Ireland’s all time favourite comedies, regularly revived at the National Theatre. It has delighted audiences for generations.
The cast in this production includes Anne Connolly, Mia Treacy, Vincent Murphy, Helen Carrigan, Jimmy O’Sullivan, Seamus Hayes, Marian Gilpin, Mary O’Connell, Gerry Fogarty, Joe Hanly, Michael McCarthy, Eoin Whyte and Eoin Powell. The play is produced by Austin O’Flynn and will run from Sunday 25th November to Saturday 1st December, with the exception of Thursday 29th which is Bingo night. Booking has now opened at O’Flynn’s Menswear, Burke Street, Tel: 052 31254 (from 10am to 6pm). Admission is £6. Special rate family nights on Sunday and Monday when admission will be reduced to £4.

The general presentation of the excellent programme on sale at the football and hurling county finals last Sunday left no doubt that football is the second citizen game in Tipperary.

Definitely not ‘ten out of ten’ for whoever was responsible for hanging a Thurles Sarsfield flag over the monument to the Tipperary Bloody Sunday football team on which the names of three Fethard men — Frank ‘Scout’ Butler, Ned O’Shea and Gus McCarthy are proudly engraved.

Allowing the Toomevara team out on the pitch for a pre-match warm up while the presentation of the O’Dwyer County Football Cup was being presented to Fethard captain Michael Quinlan.

As positive proof that football is the second-class game in the county, whoever sent in the county final match results to the RTE Gaelic Results Programme at 11.02pm on Sunday night, did not bother to send the football final result.

Several commented on the atmosphere, or lack of atmosphere, prevailing in Fethard in the week preceding the match. We had roughly six blue and white flags on display, two of those on one premises. Quite a number did not even know the game was taking place. However, those that matter knew and were rewarded for their faith.

Three families, Leonards (4), O’Sheas (3), Peters (2), Moroneys (3), supplied four-fifths of the Aherlow team beaten by Fethard in last Sunday’s County football final.

The colours of the competing teams on Sunday were the same in both finals — blue and white for Fethard and Thurles Sarsfields, green and gold for Aherlow and Toomevara. Speaking of colours, if for nothing but for old time sake, is there any chance the Fethard club would get a set of the Fethard traditional colours of St. Patrick’s blue jersey with white collar and cuffs, and wear them occasionally. These after all are the colours set out in the club’s constitution.

Fethard’s ‘man of the match’ Tommy Sheehan is one of the most senior players on the Fethard team. That is probably the best way to put it. Now in his mid-thirties, Tommy first played for the Fethard senior football team as a very young teenager. Believe it or not! he is twenty years in senior football. His playing record is one of the longest in the club’s history and must rank with the long-serving record of such players as Mick Byrne, Dick Hayes, Sean Moloney, Liam Connolly, Jimmy McCarthy and Cly Mullins. Brian Burke, of Sunday’s team, must also have almost as long a playing career as Tommy.

Records from different eras are hard to compare. Players of yesteryear did not start their careers as young as is now the case. the games were much more physical and not as many games played. The game nowadays is much faster and much more competitive. With very few exceptions, over thirty players are now very scarce while thirty or forty years ago they provided the bulk of most senior teams, and players did not burn out as quickly.

Two Fethard players deserving of special mention in Sunday’s final are Paul Fitzgerald and Conor McCarthy. Dr. Eamon O’Sullivan, Kerry, in his book on Gaelic football said of the goalkeeper, “He may not have much to do, but what he does he must do it well”. Paul did not have much to do on Sunday last but held a few very awkward shots very well when an Aherlow goal could have put a different complexion on the result. Conor perhaps, by his normal standards, had a quite game but his early opening goal lifted Fethard at a crucial time, and he also kicked two vital points when most needed at the start of the second half.

Best of luck to Fethard in the Munster Club Championships, which will commence this coming weekend.


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