Monthly Archives: August 2011

Carrickmore Vs Errigal Ciaran

I was at the draw for the first round of the Power N.I. Tyrone club championships back in June in Kelly’s Inn and there was considerable excitement and disbelief when the first two teams picked out of the O’Neill Cup to play each other were bitter rivals Errigal Ciaran and Carrickmore. That was back in June and nearly 2 months of anticipation built up to the final first round championship game last Sunday evening.

Everyone is probably well aware of the battles these two teams have had over the last 15 years involving some of Tyrone’s finest players (including current Errigal Ciaran manager Peter Canavan) and that is why 5000 people packed into Pomeroy Plunkett’s grounds on Sunday evening.

Throughout the 60 minutes of play, a gap of no more than 2 points separated the teams. Carrickmore looked the better team in the first half with great work coming from Colm Mc Gurk and Conor Gormley and they went in at half time 0-05 to 0-04 ahead.

But it was Errigal Ciaran that struck the only goal of the game early in the second half to put them 1 point up but they failed to seize the opportunity and capitalize on it. Carrickmore went onto hit 2 points of their own thanks to Caolan Daly and Errigal Ciaran never took the lead again. Final score; Carrickmore 0-12, Errigal Ciaran 1-08.

It was the narrowest of defeats for Errigal Ciaran and it was disappointing to see them bow out of the championship empty handed for another year but most people would agree that Carrickmore fully deserved their victory and a quarter final clash with Clonoe O’Rahilly’s.

Below are some images from the game.

Team captains and county team mates John Devine (left) and Conor Gormley (right) shake hands before the throw-in. The referee for the clash was the highly experience Martin Sludden. Last time I photographed an Errigal Ciaran Vs Carrickmore game and Martin Sludden refereed was the 2009 Division 1 League Final when 7 players were sent off following a massive melee... thankfully this didn't happen again!

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Eskra Vs Newtownstewart

My third game of the day took place at Pomeroy at 5.30pm so as soon as the Ardboe Vs Greencastle game was over at 4.50pm in Dungannon, it was straight into the car and over the hills to be in time for the teams coming out. By this stage, my appetite was getting the better of me but this was quickly cured by one of those dodgy burgers from the burger van at Pomeroy….. it filled a hole but they always smell better than they taste!! :-)

It was a disappointing game from a spectator’s point of view with Eskra in full control from the start. Newtownstewart will be disappointed with the manner they got defeated with some very poor passing and general cohesion but Eskra should be congratulated on their achievement with notable  performances coming from captain Joe Mc Carroll and sharp-shooter Peter Hughes. Final score; Eskra 0-16 Newtownstewart 0-07.

Joe Mc Carroll attempts a point for Eskra.

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Ardboe Vs Greencastle

The second game at O’Neill Park, Dungannon saw Ardboe take on Greencastle in the first round of the Power N.I. Tyrone Senior club championship. This was a tie that was going to prove difficult for Greencastle to get a result from due to the calibre of players Ardboe had in the starting fifteen including the four Mc Guigan brothers, Kyle Coney and Gavin Wylie.

Greencastle started well and the terrific catching from their midfielder Enda Clarke resulted in them getting plenty of possession in the first half but unfortunately they didn’t use it to good enough effect and went in at half time 0-05 to 0-03 down.

Ardboe’s experience came to the fore in the second half and they had a much tighter grip on the game although Greencastle had their scoring opportunities too. Three second half points from Kyle Coney for the Loughshore men ensured they safely made the Quarter Finals as the low scoring encounter ended 0-10 to 0-05 to Mickey Donnelly’s Ardboe team.

Ardboe captain Tommy Mc Guigan and Greencastle captain Colly Tuohey shake hands before the throw in. Stephen Mc Namee was the referee for the game.

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Loughmacrory Vs Killyman

Sunday afternoon saw the first of four Tyrone club championship games that I would attend in one day. O’Neill Park, home of Dungannon Thomas Clarkes, was the venue for the Tyrone Intermediate Championship tie between Loughmacrory and last year’s Junior champions, Killyman. It was a fine afternoon for football although an extra layer of clothing is a must  for photographing football matches for the rest of 2011.

Underdogs Killyman started strongly and went into a  0-04 to 0-01 lead after 10 minutes. But the men from Loughmacrory soon found their gear and went in at half time 1-06 to 0-05 …….. and to further add to the Killyman woes, they were reduced to 14 men after Sean Donnelly picked up a second booking.

Loughmacrory’s control in the second half continued as it finished at the end of the first as Stephen Donaghy scored two goals to effectively the game as a contest although Killyman did score a late consolation goal. Final score; Loughmacrory 3-11 Killyman 1-10.

Here are some images from the game.

The Loughmacrory subs get an Irish tan at O'Neill Park, Dungannon!

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Coalisland Vs Killyclogher

In the second game on Friday night, reigning Tyrone senior champions Coalisland took on Killyclogher…. a relatively straight forward tie for na Fianna but they were made to work for their victory.

A large crowd had gathered into Healy Park for this tie and the temperature was starting to drop as the sun set after the 8.30pm throw-in…… the summer is definitely on the way out (but was it ever here in the first place!?).

Killyclogher played impressively in the opening half and Coalisland were frustrated by their poor decision making and shooting and it was the boys from the west of Tyrone that went in 0-07 to 0-05 up at half time.

This continued in the opening 10 minutes of the second half  as Killyclogher added to the scoreboard and were 0-09 to 0-07 up but the current champions showed their potential and turned it around thanks to a scoring display of 0-08 from Fianna’s Paddy Mc Niece. Killyclogher never got a hold of the game from here on in and the game ended 0-16 to 0-11 to current champions Coalisland.

 

Coalisland na Fianna huddle together before the throw in with manager Damian O'Hagan pictured far right.

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Dromore Vs Moy

On Friday night, in the first of a double header in the Tyrone Senior Club Championship, Dromore took on Moy at Healy Park, Omagh. Due to both clubs having similar shades of blue in their jerseys, a last minute kit change took place with Dromore wearing the away red Tyrone top and Moy sporting the traditional white Tyrone jersey. Not ideal for photographs but these things happen occasionally.

This was never going to be an easy game for Moy especially when their star player, Sean Cavanagh, injured himself during a gym session for the upcoming International Rules games last week, ruling himself out for the rest of 2011 at least.

From the outset of the game, Dromore were firmly in control and lead 1-07 to 0-03 at the break. Although Moy made a blistering start to the second half, they couldn’t sustain the momentum and Dromore came out comfortable 1-14 to 0-06 winners thanks to a personal tally of 1-07 from Dromore’s Eoin Mc Cusker.

Tomas Mc Nicholl clears the ball from the Moy back line. This was taken just after 7pm and there was a nice light coming across the pitch as the sun set.

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Clonoe Vs Trillick

The second game in Dunmoyle on Sunday evening saw Clonoe take on Trillick in the first round of the Power N.I. Tyrone Senior Championship. After getting knocked out in the first round of last year’s senior championship by eventual champions Coalisland, Clonoe were hoping to fare better this year under former Derry manager Damien Cassidy.

It was Trillick that had the advantage at half time thanks to a penalty from Eunan Mc Anespy and a goal from Niall Gormley and went in 2-02 to 0-05 up after a disappointing half from the O’Rahillys.

The second half saw a reverse of fortunes for Clonoe as they gradually clawed their way back with point from Ryan T O’Neill and Colm Dorris. Trillick will rue some missed opportunities resulting in them going 25 minutes without scoring in the second period. Final score at the highly attended game was Clonoe 0-13 Trillick 2-05.

Below are some photographs from the game.

The Trillick panel stand for the national anthem at Dunmoyle.

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Stewartstown Vs Gortin

On Sunday evening, I attended another Stewartstown GFC event for the second weekend running. Stewartstown Harps took on Gortin in the first round of the Power N.I. Tyrone Intermediate Championship in Errigal Ciaran’s home ground of Dunmoyle. This was the penultimate game of the weekend after four days of club championship football in a row in Tyrone, all of which I missed unfortunately due to holidays.

Stewartstown and Gortin met only 2 weeks previous to this in the league and Gortin came out comfortable winners by 9 points so the Harps knew this was not going to be an easy game and were hoping to carry on the euphoria from last weekend’s official pitch opening ceremony.

A drab enough first half saw both teams go in level at 1-05 to 0-08 but the game opened up a lot in the second half which were full of incidents. In a very high scoring game however, Stewartstown came out on top on a scoreline of  4-09 to 2-14. This performance from the Harps certainly had the X-Factor and they will be fancied to progress further following championship exits from Edendork, Clann na Gael and Aghyaran earlier this weekend.

Below are some images from the game.

Gortin's Ruairi Keenan makes a clean catch in midfield against Ed Laverty early in the first half.

 

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Opening of Stewartstown GAC New Facilities

At the weekend I did yet another favour for a close friend of mine and went to the opening of his club’s pitch and clubrooms…. after looking after him for 4 years in college, I have lost count of how many favours I’ve done for him now!! :-)

Stewartstown GAC, located in the rural area of Mullaghmoyle, officially opened their facilities with a whole weekend of events which culminated on Sunday evening when none other than GAA President, Christy Cooney, and our own Tyrone GAA county chairman, Ciaran Mc Laughlin, arrived to do the opening honours.

The weekend’s events were co-ordinated impeccably by a hard working committee and supported wonderfully by the local parish. Below are a few images from the weekend.

President of the GAA, Mr. Christy Cooney and Tyrone GAA County chairman, Mr. Ciaran Mc Laughlin officially open the Stewartstown Harps playing field and club rooms. Pictured with them is the club secretary Damien Mc Conville, club chairman Sean Gallagher and future Harps stars Padraig, Laura and Sean ӓg.

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Tyrone Vs Dublin

Saturday night saw the probable end of an era for Tyrone county football for a few years anyway. The All-Ireland quarter final tie was sure to be epic on paper but unfortunately Dublin were just too good for Tyrone on the night and they utilized the same tactics that Tyrone have used against so many great teams during the past 8 years.

As anyone who was in Dublin knows only too well, the heavens opened around 5pm and didn’t really let up until half time. This didn’t make taking photos as easy as I had my gear wrapped in plastic and with other covers which slows things down but it couldn’t be prevented. Croke Park was quite empty as the teams came out at 6.40pm for their warm up and it wasn’t until a few minutes to seven that the majority of the 52,000 crowd took their seats.

The two teams stand for the national anthem in steady rain. The atmosphere was building up despite the stadium being only two thirds full.

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