Search Results for 'Martin Barrett'
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Firstly to admit an error broadcast by yours truly live on radio last Sunday during the Mayo v Tyrone game. With the entire furore over black cards, yellow cards and red cards, I was blissfully unaware that teams were now in fact allowed to make six substitutions.
They came a long way to be there. The sons and daughters of Erris converged on Croke Park from all corners of the globe and all corners of their rugged and beautiful outpost on the edge of the Atlantic Ocean. While their family, friends and supporters travelled great distances to be in Croke Park last Sunday, the distance the men who togged out in blue and gold traveled was further. From the despair and desolation of their dressing room after losing their prized senior status, to the confines of Croke Park last Sunday, it has been some journey.
Truagh Gaels 2-21
It is the stuff of childhood dreams, a small rural parish getting ready to descend on the great cathedral of sport in the nation. When Kiltane run out on to the field on Jones Road on Sunday, there will not be many left back home to keep check on the house, and those who are left behind will have their ears glued to the radio, using their mind to picture the proceedings going on in Croke Park.
Oh to have a crystal ball to see what fortunes lie ahead for Mayo football in 2014. One thing for sure, one Mayo club — Kiltane have a superb chance to claim one of the early pieces of silverware when they take on Truagh of Monaghan in the All-Ireland intermediate final in Croke Park on February 9, a feat my own club Charlestown should have accomplished last season but for some calamitous decisions when they were coasting against eventual winners Cookstown of Tyrone in the All- Ireland semi final. Kiltane were simply brilliant last Sunday. If you were to tell me before the game that star attacker Mikey Sweeney and Tommy “Goals” Conroy were not going to score against Clyda Rovers, I would have re-mortgaged the house on Clyda.
If there is a man, woman, or child to be found the villages and towns that send their sons out to do battle in the blue and yellow of Kiltane on Sunday, it would be a safe assumption that they are tourists, trying to figure out why exactly there is no-one to be found in this secnic part of the country. They take a lot of things seriously in that enclave of the county, but not many things more seriously than the game of Gaelic football and on Sunday afternoon with a chance of an appearance in an All Ireland final in Croke Park, it’s the only thing that matters to the men who have been training all guns blazing since the end of 2012 to get to where they are on Sunday.
A couple of minutes into the second half of their Connacht semi-final against Rosses Point/Drumcliffee it looked as if Kiltane had their place in this year’s provincial final wrapped up and tucked in the luggage compartment of the team bus and on the road home to Erris. But Martin Barrett’s men were made to sweat right until the final whistle in MacHale Park a few weeks ago, as a combination of taking their eye off the game and the Sligo champions refusing to go away saw Kiltane just hang on by the skin of their teeth to set up this Sunday’s meeting with the Roscommon champions Boyle in the county grounds in Castlebar.
our county champions Castlebar Mitchels take on the might of Corofin in the Connacht club semi-final. It really is a step into the unknown for Pat Holmes’ team who look set to have to plan without ace midfielder/attacker Danny Kirby who was red carded in the county u21 football final last Friday. There will be arguments all over as to whether Kirby’s suspension should follow through to the senior grade, but the fact that this was his last game as an u21 player meant he had to be suspended for something. He should not have put his team or manager in this predicament and I am sure ‘Holmesy’ was raging, as Kirby is a vital part of the Castlebar game plan. Corofin seem to have their eyes on bigger prizes this year and next, they will see Sunday as a means to an end. They also had the luxury of cantering home in their county final against a very disappointing Salthill/Knocknacarra on a score line of 2-13 to 0-7. Playing two weeks before the Mayo final also gave Crossmolina native and Corofin manager Stephen Rochford the ideal situation of being able to watch Castlebar in full tilt in the county final (as if he did not know enough already). I myself have been on the wrong end of a pasting from Corofin in the Connacht Club Championship. In 2009 they came to Charlestown and destroyed us on our own patch in the Connacht final. We were literally beaten all over the field. That game was due to go ahead a week previous but was postponed due to a water logged pitch after two weeks intensive rain, however what I ultimately remember from the whole experience is the day before the postponed game was to go ahead, Corofin had three officials in Charlestown for the pitch inspection, checking that matters were conducted correctly. They leave no stone unturned such is their professionalism. Gary Sice was their main man in the county final scoring 1-04, the Galway star seems to have found the form which his talent suggested, but they have match winners all over the field. Kieran Comer is a proven handful for whoever he has come up against and watch out for pocket rocket Joe Canney, (not to be confused with hurler Joe Canning) he destroyed us in that final in 2009. There is no doubt this will be the best team Castlebar have come up against in the last few years. They will need to be at full tilt to have any hope in this game, the Mitchell’s have some brilliant individuals who are capable of going toe to toe with anyone, but when big team performances are needed I cannot see past the well oiled machine that is Corofin.
Winning the Mayo intermediate title this year was number one on Kiltane’s list of objectives at the start of the year, they achieved that a number of weeks ago and a summer season of senior championship football now beckons for the north Mayo men. But winning the Mayo title was not the be all and end all of this team’s ambitions and they have taken to the Connacht championships with gusto, and on Sunday they will return to MacHale Park looking for a place in the Connacht final and put themselves in with a chance of doing what both Davitts and Charlestown have done in the two previous years, top off a great season with provincial honours. Then come the spring time a crack at an All Ireland series could await them and set them up for 2014 in style.