Category: Archive

Irish Sports Desk Bohemians-Shelbourne shapes up as highlight

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

By Sean Creedon

The big game in the second round of the FAI Harp Lager Cup on Sunday, Feb. 7 is the meeting of Bohemians and Shelbourne at Dalymount Park. When the clubs met in the League two weeks ago a rejuvenated Bohs side came out on top. Shelbourne, who knocked out Cup experts Shamrock Rovers, have a good Cup record in recent years and they should progress, but it may take a replay.

The tie that will bring back happy memories is the meeting of Sligo Rovers and Cobh Ramblers at The Showgrounds. Sixteen years ago, Cobh, then a non-League club, took Sligo to a four-game marathon before eventually surrendering to the team from the Northwest. Sligo went on to win the Cup for the first time in their history.

The Cup is all about the so-called minnows and Cork club St. Mary’s, who beat fellow non-Leaguers Bangor Celtic in the first round, must fancy their chances against first division Kilkenny City.

Mick to name squad

Mick McCarthy will this week name his squad for the European Championship warm-up against Paraguay at Lansdowne Road next Wednesday, Feb. 10. It should include Jason McAteer, who last week moved from Liverpool to Blackburn Rovers for £4 million.

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Last week, officials of the FAI and the IFA met in Belfast to finalize details of the game between North and South at Lansdowne Road on May 19 in aid of the Omagh Trust Fund. Northern Ireland will be allocated 3,400 tickets. In the past when the two Irelands met the respective Association,s didn’t make any tickets available to opposing supporters. Also at the meeting in Belfast, the FAI undertook to stop approaching players born in the North to play for The Republic.

O’Sullivan scales back

Sonia O’Sullivan has decided not to compete in any races this year so as to keep herself fresh for the Sydney Olympics.

"The main focus of my career at this point is Sydney," she said. "That is the only prize that really matters and hopefully the rest will help me achieve it. Back in 1995, the year before Atlanta, I won pretty much everything that mattered. People were already prepared to give me the gold medals, but look what happened. This time I’ll approach the games by a different route."

Football resumes

The Church and General National Football League resumes on Sunday next with games in just one section, Div. 2A. And it features what will probably be one of the mismatches of the year when Kilkenny host Kerry.

Paidi O’Sé, the Kerry manager, has recalled Dr. Crokes player Brian Clarke to the squad and with many of the under-21 players keen to impress, the Kingdom should run a big score. A full round of games in all divisions will get under way on Sunday week.

Limerick-born Michael Hennessey has been appointed manager of the London senior hurling team. The 55-year-old founder member of Na Piarsaigh Club in Limerick, emigrated in the mid-1980s.

Barrett drops down

Francie Barrett has dropped down a weight to light welterweight in his bid to represent Ireland at next year’s Olympic Games. Barrett had his first fight at the new weight in the Green Glens Arena in Millstreet last week when he beat local boxer Declan Barrett.

"It was my first fight in nine months and I was a bit ring rusty," said Barrett, who will be hoping to win his Olympic ticket at the National Senior Championships in Dublin next month.

Barrett has been given two months off with pay from his job on a London construction site to train for the National Championships.

"Denis Curran of Barkhill Construction looks after me really well and I am back with my old trainer Chick Gillen in Galway," Barrett said

Andrews takes over Cavan

Forty year-old Val Andrews is the new Cavan football manager. He takes over from Liam Austin, who quit last month when he lost the confidence of his players and the County Board Chairman. Andrews, who played club football for Ballymun Kickhams in Dublin, has served his apprenticeship as manager of Tralee Regional Technical College. His assistant will be former Irish sprint champion Pat Flanagan. The pair have worked together in Tralee, from where they will make the 360-mile round trip to Cavan two or three times a week. Andrews has shown in the past that he demands only the best from his players. After Kerry won the All-Ireland football final in 1997, he dropped three of the Kerry players from the Tralee team because they were not showing the correct attitude in training.

Bobsled record

The two-man Irish Bobsled team of Jeff Pamplin and Paul Kiernan recently set a national record of 53.61 seconds at the World Bobsled Cup in Igs, Austria, last week. The Irish team now travel to the America’s Cup in Calgary this month.

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