Category: Archive

Irish Sports Desk Keeper crisis looms for McCarthy squad

February 16, 2011

By Staff Reporter

By Sean Creedon

Republic of Ireland manager Mick McCarthy must be worried about the sharpness of two of his three goalkeepers. Alan Kelly, who has been out of favor at Blackburn, was put on the transfer list last week, and on Monday Shay Given asked to get away from Newcastle United.

McCarthy has a policy of only playing players who are getting regular first-team football. Thankfully, Dean Kiely, Ireland’s third keeper, is in great form with Charlton Athletic.

Brandywell challenge

FAI Cup holders Shelbourne have been drawn away to Derry City in the next round. Shels, who are odds-on favorites to retain their League title, will face at tough game at The Brandywell. But the tie of the round is a repeat of last year’s semifinal between Bohemians and Bray Wanderers. The third-round games will be played on the week ending Feb. 4.

Carey wins libel suit

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According to a report in Monday’s Irish Examiner Kilkenny, hurler D.J. Carey has won over £100,000 in libel cases against The Sunday World and Sunday Independent newspapers.

Unclothed Connollys

It has become fashionable for male and female sports people all over the world to pose nude for calendars. Now a group of Galway men have bared all for a charity calendar. The Connolly brothers, John, Joe and Michael are seen with just hurleys preserving their modesty.

Olympic oarsman Neville Maxwell and Galway footballer Sean Og de Paor have also posed for the calendar, which will raise funds for cancer and cerebal palsy.

Jordan afloat

Irish Grand Prix owner Eddie Jordan will compete in the powerboat race series with a 21-foot Honda sports model.

The sponsor will be Jordan’s High Intensity sport drink EJ10, another of the Dubliner’s commercial enterprises. A crew has yet to be signed, but Jordan is planing to give his Formula One drivers, Heinz Harald Frentzen and Jarno Trulli, a chance to put the boat through its paces.

Solomons for Ulster

Alan Solomons, the former Springboks assistant coach, is to take over as director of rugby in Ulster beginning June 1. The appointment follows the trend by the provinces to go for foreign coaches. Already Ireland have Matt Willliams, an Australian, in charge of Leinster, and South African Steph Nel the manager in Connacht. Munster’s Declan Kidney is the only Irish coach of a provincial side.

O’Byrne Cup

While many GAA players are enjoying winter breaks in the sun, the footballers of Longford begin the defense of their O’Byrne Cup when they meet Laois on Sunday, Jan 14. The winners will play Meath in the next round a week from Sunday.

Also on Sunday, Carlow play Wicklow, with the winners meeting Dublin in the next round.

Dublin introduced some promising newcomers in the annual Blue Stars game on New Year’s Day, and whether Carlow or Wicklow get through, they will love to get a crack at The Dubs even at this early stage of the year.

There is also hurling action in Leinster with Meath playing Laois in the Walsh Cup. Competitive action also resumes in Connacht this weekend with games in the FBD Football League. Leitrim play Mayo at Annaduff and Roscommon meet Sligo in Elphin.

McManus goes for ‘Gold’

Limerick-born J.P. McManus has purchased First Gold, the impressive winner of the King George VI Chase at Kempton on St. Stephen’s Day. The millionaire, who is a tax exile in Switzerland, also owns several other top racehorses, including Istabraq. First Gold, who is favorite for the Cheltenham Gold Cup, will continue to be trained in France by Francois Doumen.

Augusta date?

President Clinton will play his first-ever round of golf in Augusta later this year with Irishman Terry Brennan, according to Brennan.

Brennan, a member of Louth County Council, met Clinton on his recent visit to Dundalk and asked if he had ever played on the famous Georgia course. Clinton said no and then accepted the offer of a game from Brennan.

"The president is a keen golfer and I was amazed he hadn’t played there, especially as it in one of the Southern states. I am really looking forward to our game," Brennan said.

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