Tuesday 25 October 2016

day to remember


AFTER Magic Monday came Super Tuesday. Croke Park was sizzling in the summer sunshine yesterday.

The second day of the Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Hurling and Camogie Finals. Fifteen matches once again decorated the centre-court.

The attendance included Brian Kavanagh of Longford. Dublin's Chris Crummey had the flag for a few of the matches. He ran the line better than Johnny Cash.

Chris complimented the craft of the children. Wizards of the wood. His county colleague, Johnny McCaffrey, was also ringside.

And so was another king of the timber, Liam Walsh. Liam is the principal of Gaelscoil Naomh Phádraig. They had a good day at HQ.

Síle NicCoitir has long been a champion of the sliotar. One of Dublin's finest sports-women.

Síle was managing Scoil Mológa, who collected the Olly Quinlan Shield. Olly loved these occasions, and he would have been singing the praises of the Herald Cup final. It was a jewel of a match.

Blink, and you would have missed a parcel of scores. It was stunning stuff. Scoil San Treasa took the prize. They had two points to spare over St Mary's BNS, Lucan.


Mary's were the holders. The previous year, Belgrove earned gold. Kilkenny's Richie Hogan was in the dugout. This was a spectacle that did the prestigious competition proud.

Cian O'Sullivan is a Treasa past pupil. He would have given the tie ten out of ten. The two sides were so well coached. The skill just flowed off the stage.

Pockets of class in every room. Two brilliant full-backs were on duty - Michael Nealon for Treasa and Lucan's Sean Casey.

Treasa had a wonderful performer in Dara Purcell, while Mary's had aces in centre half-back, Cian Duffy, and midfielder, Evin Dowling.

Treasa led by a point at half-time, 2-4 to 0-9. And the pace was just relentless.

There wasn't a wafer between them. And it was looking like extra-time. But the Merrion maestros got there in the end. Sustained applause circled the ground.

On this evidence, Dublin hurling can look forward to sunny days. And many of them.

Liam Walsh would certainly agree. His Naomh Phádraig side possess some delightful players.

Among them are excellent midfielder, Maitiú Ó Cuagáin and the full-forward, Fionn Bruton. Both boys rattled the sack three times as Pádraig overcame Scoil Maelruain.

The Maelruain captain, Sam Stewart, produced a terrific goal from the right sideline.

The Mológa-Presentation, Terenure tussle also produced a basket of fine scores. Ellie de Shiúin was in exceptional for Mológa. As were Millie Ní Fheireallaigh and Caoimhe Ní Bheaglaioch.

The Sciath Marino duel maintained the high standards.

The Joey's centre half-back, Tom McVeigh, had a stormer. He hit 3-2. In attack, Niall Fitzgibbon had a party. He scored six points.

Scoil Bhríde and Bishop Galvin served up a camogie treat in the Corn Bean Uí Phuirseil.

The artful Amy Quinn was humming at midfield for Bhríde. The Galvin midfielder, Una Nerney, went on a couple of lovely solo runs down the left.

Inside in the tea-room, everybody was in wide agreement.

It had been another Croke Park carnival. Thirty games over the two days. The referees did a terrific job, not a card in sight.

The vast majority of the Dublin hurlers and footballers have enjoyed the Cumann na mBunscol experience. And long may it continue to flourish in Dublin's Theatre of Dreams.

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