A huge day beckons for St Joseph’s College, Galway next Wednesday (May 6 ) when they contest the Umbro Senior Boys’ Cup All Ireland final at Terryland Park (2pm ), seeking only their second win in the competition.
The Bish, having accounted for Milford’s Loreto Community School by 3 -1 on penalties, now face CBS Sexton Street, Limerick who took out Tallaght by 3 - 0.
It is 20 years since the Galway school claimed their first senior title when Claregalway’s Frank Thornton directed the team to honours. This year Robert Grealish and assistants Barry McDermott and Colie Kelly have brought their side successfully to the national final through the circuitous knock-out route since losing out to eventual Connacht finalists Strokestown CS.
Although they started the season somewhat indifferently, they have proved their mettle as the campaign has progressed with victories over Summerhill, St Mary’s, Galway, and Strokestown in the Connacht final. In the national semi-final for the first time in six years, and only the fourth time in the school’s history, the Bish deservedly took the spoils on penalties.
Now, however, the Galway school faces a monumental task against a school going for an unprecedented three in a row. The Limerick outfit, led by talented Irish schools’ captain Jason Hughes in midfield, will be favourites to take the crown again, but the Bish boast a talented squad that will certainly threaten Limerick’s ambitions.
The Bish, led by Irish keeper Ger Hanley, also boast schools international striker Brian Gaffney who has proved influential in the campaign, Salthill Devon’s Barry McCabe, Michael Evans, and Ronan Conlon, Hib stars Gary Kelly and Brian McNamara, and Mervue’s Ross Lynskey and Conor Winn.
With home support, the Bish may have that extra dimension to suprise the favourites and claim a second All Ireland crown.