DUNEDIN CONNOLLYS AGM 2012
Dunedin Connollys AGM for 2012 took place on Monday the 17th of December at 7pm at the Irish Consulate in Edinburgh
Senior Committee for 2013
Peter Dillon was ratified as Chairman for 2013
Dermot O Louglin was ratified as Secretary for 2013
Declan Cullinane was ratified as treasurer for 2013
Pat Lynch was ratified as PRO for 2013
Mens Team Committee
Ronan McGurk and Frank Molloy were ratified as Mens team representive committee for 2013. There was one further place on this committee left to be filled.
Ladies Team Committee
Helen Keenan, Mary O'Riordan & Sue O'Sullivan were ratified as the Ladies Team representative committee for 2013
The 2012 Season: A Scourged Harvest, Yet One That Will Sow
On a crisp autumn afternoon at Glasgow’s Lochinch Park, all those connected with Dunedin Connolly’s momentarily suffered a collective break of the heart in the Scottish Championship final when Barry Russell’s stoppage time goal for Tir Conaill Harps snatched a dramatic victory from the clutches of Cormac O’Gara’s men from the Edinburgh club.
Yet as devastating as it was to lose a championship final in such a way, it was only but a moment in aten-month long season; a season that can go on to inspire and one that the Edinburgh club can take great heart in.
When the club and committee met for their AGM at the Irish Consulate building in the city’s west end last January, O’Gara was popularly received as manager. Notably for the fact that the club’s sole British Championship success had come under his first reign in charge back in 2009.
With immediate effect, the man from the Ghaeltacht region of west Donegal put a systematic plan in place. He showed great foresight by knowing exactly who he would have at his disposal and who he would try to bring in to add strength and depth to his squad; a number of players he had come to knowfrom his liaison work with Napier University for instance.
Added to that, his determination to make Dunedin Connolly’s the main driving force in both Scotlandand Britain came across in not just his planning, but also his tactical approach and vision as well as his demeanour and in-match assessment.
Cormac adapted a system of play that seemed to suit his players rather than going with an approachthat the players would have to learn to fit in too. He encouraged a great use of quick-countering fromthe back with early balls into a proactive forward like that consistently carried a great threat to the opposition and, on more occasions than not, reaped great rewards on the score card.
Scottish County League
The results of the Scottish County League campaign verified the worthiness of his approach. In the opening four games, Connolly’s won three and drew one amassing a total of 89 points over the quartet of fixtures and conceding a respectable equivalent of just 38.
Connolly’s only draw in that run of fixtures was a 1-09 to 2-06 stalemate with Tir Conaill in undoubtedlytheir most physically based encounter they had in that competition when a trio of players between the teams saw the line for overly-heavy challenges.
Despite the bruises from that day, however, there was not a sense of relief to get a draw but more afeeling of disappointment that they didn’t win and this was perhaps an early sign coming through that the determination for victory was truly alive in the camp.
This game in question had followed an earlier home win over Glasgow Gaels which saw a resounding 2-20 to 0-07 victory take place. An away trip to the Skedocklsey in Aberdeen witnessed a superb secondhalf show where Connolly’s ran out 3-12 to 0-07 winners over Dundee Dalraida before a 1-18 to 1-02 win against Sands McSwiney’s sealed their place in the final.
When Tir Conaill Harps came to visit Duddingston for the League Final back in May, it was a much more cagey affair in terms of scoring yet showed that O’Gara’s team could work effectively as a unit even ingames that they weren’t always showing themselves to be the dominant force on a given day.
A 0-09 to 0-07 win in that final was met with joyous celebrations on the field that afternoon and it gavethe team a taste for further success after their appetite had been whetted.
Still in a good run of high-scoring form at this point and with two Scottish Championship games under their belt, Dunedin Connolly’s briefly switched their attention to the Davitt Shield tournament.With most of his players unavailable for the semi-final game against Dundee Dalraida, O’Gara utilised his resources superbly and a 5-11 to 0-10 win was further proof of how his ideas were being installed to the squad as a whole and not just his more regular starters.
Disappointingly for Connolly’s though, they were not able to replicate the success of the leaguecampaign when they met Tir Conaill for their second final against them in as many months.
This time it was to be the south-side Glasgow based club would be celebrating after a 1-12 to 0-09 winin late June. Regardless, the result provided some food for thought and it was put down to experience instead of being dwelled upon.
John Morkham Memorial Cup
Dunedin Connolly’s tasted success again though at the Morkham Memorial Cup in August when they sent not one, but two teams to compete in the blitz tournament that took place in Stirling.
On the day itself, it was Connolly’s Team One who lifted the trophy after a brace of wins over Dundeeand also one over Sands. The games themselves being only twenty minutes long apiece, yet with less margin for error regarding time, Connolly’s overcame an early deficit in the final against Dundee to leavethe day victorious.
The 2012 Scottish Championship
The sad truth about football is that great teams don’t always get to experience that unbridled joy ofbeing crowned national champions; even in finals where they can recover an eleven point deficit onaway territory to lead the game in stoppage time by a point, defend well by forcing two wide-balls andyet still suffer the devastation of a controversial late goal.
Such moments which put the heads in the hands and sink the hearts of players, coaches, committeemembers and supporters alike – like what Dunedin Connolly’s experienced in the month of October.
The road to the final itself commenced back in June and saw a run of fixtures where Connolly’s won amost impressive eight games out of eight during the league stage of the competition. Many of which were emphatic wins to say the least which once again evidenced the belief O’Gara had in his own preparation and belief in his players.
An opening round crushing of Glasgow Gaels in Paisley by a score of 2-18 to 0-05 set the stall out forthe season ahead. It was quickly followed up with a bigger win at home over Sands; this time with a score-line of 4-20 to 0-01. After a few weeks break from championship matters, the winning run wasmaintained with a 1-12 to 0-09 success over Tir Conaill and then a 1-15 to 1-08 defeat of Dundee.
There was no let up in Connolly’s drive in the second round of fixtures either. Glasgow Gaels were againput to the sword in a 1-15 to 0-05 win as well as a 1-17 to 0-02 rout of Dundee. In Coatbridge, Sands fell to a 3-19 to 0-06 demolition and the Edinburgh side sealed their place in the semi-finals after a somewhat surprisingly large win over Tir Conaill, even by Connolly’s standards, in a 3-11 to 0-01 win.
A home game against Glasgow Gaels was scheduled for the semi-final and unlike previous meetingsbetween the two that same season, this was one that Connolly’s did not always have their own wayby any means. Trailing by four at the interval, a rejuvenated home side weathered the storm andeventually ran out winners by a score of 1-13 to 0-11. The place in the final was secured.
In the final itself against Tir Conaill, in a game that ended so cruelly for the club, one could not but admire the heart and commitment the boys showed in the final twenty minutes. On a slippery and worn looking pitch, Connolly’s recovered a deficit of 11 points and went into the closing minutes leading by a solitary yet so very crucial score of 3-11 to 4-07.
They initially survived a late onslaught from Harps but still went crashing down to a last-gasp fisted goalwhen a hopeful and high-dipping ball in was too much for them to deal with after a tiring battle. Scottish champions they were not to be as the moment belonged to Tir Conaill. Yet, in a season that promised somuch that could not harvest the prize they set their sights on; nobody would bet against a rejuvenated response in 2013.
The year that after all will mark the 25th anniversary of Dunedin Connolly’s GFC.
By Jonathan Foley
PRO Dunedin Connolly's
Scottish County Final 21st October 2012
Tir Conail Harps 5-07 Dunedin Connollys 3-11
Dunedin Connollys Men’s Gaelic football team contested the Scottish County Final on Sunday the 21st of October. The match was played at Tir Conail Harps home ground at Lochinch Park in Glasgow. Cormac O’Gara’s men were very well prepared, organized and hungry for the challenge that lay ahead but fortune did not favor them on the day.
The weather on the day was perfect for championship football but unfortunately the weeks leading up to the match was miserable with rain every day which did nothing for the underfoot conditions of the pitch which was very heavy to say the least.
Connolly’s had recorded a runaway victory against Harps in the pool stages only 2 weeks previously but the Harps were not about to hand over a county championship without a fight.
The first half was heavy going with player’s struggled to get used to the underfoot conditions. The Harps got off to the better start and scored twice in the 2nd and 7th min. Connolly’s opened their account after 9 minutes with a point from play from Michael Cochrane. Connolly’s suffered a huge blow when Paul Kennedy slipped and acquired a serious knee injury and had to be helped off the field. Joe Crean was brought on in his place. To add insult to injury Harps rattled the Connolly’s net on the 13 min. Connolly’s didn’t panic and kept to their game plan and when full forward Dermott O Loughlin got a fist to a ball in from Tony Gallagher to get a goal back at the 18 minute mark it was game on again. Tir Conail got another point to make it 1-03 to 1-01 with 20 minutes gone. A point from play from wing forward Brian McAteer brought Connollys back to within a point once again. Tir Conail added another point which was cancelled out by a 45 from center forward Alan Ward. Then came another massive blow to the Connolly, when Tir Conail got their 2nd goal of the match. After a very good save from Connollys Goalkeeper Niall Considine, the ball wasn’t cleared and it was passed across the face of the goal for the Harps wing forward to palm into the open net. Connollys were again 4 points down and up against it. A free from Alan Ward put 3 between the teams but Tir Conail had the final say of the half with a free from in front of the goals.
Half time score line
Tir Conail Harps 2-05 Vs Dunedin Connollys 1-04
Connollys started the second half with a lot of fight and endeavor but couldn’t get the scores they required to close the gap. For all their efforts in the opening 5 minutes where they had 3 poor wides it was Tir Conaill who struck first to widen the gap to 5 Points. Then disaster struck twice in the space of a minute, as Tir Conail struck 2 goals. The first of which trickled across the line as Connollys defenders scrambled to save it. The second goal came off the resulting kick out and left Connollys 11 Points down with 20 minutes to play. It would have been easy for the Connollys lads to throw in the towel but to their credit they just got their heads down and got on with the job at hand. Even the most optimistic of players or fans would have a job trying to convince themselves that a comeback was possible but what happened next made this game one of the greatest Scottish Finals of all time.
Connollys made a few positional switches at this stage, dropping both Alan Ward and Tony Gallagher deeper into their own half to help out defensively. The plan was simple. Stop Tir Conail scoring and play the ball into the full forward line as quick and as direct as possible. As the man says “On a wet pitch if you drop enough of ball in around the house, the law of averages says some of them will end up in the back of the net” and that is exactly what happened. Points from Brian McAteer, Mark Whelan, Frank Molloy (2), Keelan Bolton, and goals from Dermot O Loughlin and Cochrane brought the side’s level at 4-06 to 3-09 with 26 minutes of the second half played . A min later Frank Molloy gave Connolly’s a one point lead to turn the impossible into a reality. Connollys had turned an 11 point deficit into a 1 point lead in the space of 17 minutes. However the party wasn’t over and just as Connollys had nothing to lose when they were behind the roles reversed and the Tir Conail men responded with a point to level things up. Michael Cochrane latched on ball knocked down from Dermot O Loughlin. He instinctively swung a foot at it and it was distended for the top corner only for the Tir Conail Goalkeeper to get a fingertip to it and touch it over the bar. Connollys were a point up with 3 minutes of added time remaining. Harps were now the team in desperate search of a score. Twice their efforts were spurned when they shot wide of the goals. However it was Heart break for Connolly’s when in the 33rd min, Harps somehow got the ball across the Connollys goal and it was punched to the net over the outrushing Connollys goal keeper. Time was up an Connolly’s were beaten by 2 points.
Full Time Score
Tir Conail 5-07 Vs Dunedin Connollys 3-11
Everyone who travelled from Edinburgh player and supporters alike were gutted at the final whistle, which was a far contrast from the uncontrollable joy and jubilation for the Harp’s players and supporters. Credit where credit is due and on behalf of Connollys we wish them the very best in the British Championship. It was a long bus journey back to Edinburgh, but we stopped at a “shop” and got a few “club oranges and Tayto” which helped soften the disappointment of the loss. Malone’s on Forest Road was the first stop when we got back to Edinburgh. Malone’s our fantastic sponsors treated us to a Steak dinner and a great night of Craic agus Ceol for the evening.
Someone once said you have to lose one before you know how good winning really feels. Our lads know how losing feels and the feeling doesn’t sit well with them. Expect the Connollys to be back next year bigger and better than before.
Niall Considine; Ronan McGurk, Richie Bruton, Paul Kennedy (Joe Crean 10min injury), John Dolan, Damien Holahan, Mark Whelan, Robbie Howe, Keelan Bolton, Tony Gallagher, Alan Ward, Brian McAteer, Michael Cochrane, Dermott O’Loughlin, Frank Molloy
Stephen Kerr, Pat Lynch, Joe Crean, Johnny McGill, Danny Loftus, Liam McGinley, Eoin O’Reilly Kevin Keating, Mike Nash, Pat Coogan, Ronan Fahy, Cathal McCarthy, Mark Conlon, Paul Fallon, Kevin Callanan, Marcus McGinley
Dermot O Loughlin 2-0, Michael Cochrane, 1-02, Frank Molloy 0-03, Alan Ward 0-02, Brian McAteer 0-02, Keelan Boltan 0-01, Mark Whelan 0-01
Scotland GAA Championship Final
Tir Conail Harps Vs Dunedin Connollys
21st October 2012
Throw in 3pm at Lochinch Park Glasgow G42 4SN
Dunedin Connollys Men’s team will take on Tir Conail Harps in the Scottish championship final on Sunday the 21st of October. It is a repeat of this year’s league final and if that’s anything to go by it will be a tight encounter.
Connollys who will be playing in their 12th Scottish final in a row will be looking for their sixth title in a row and their tenth overall. They have won eight of the last nine Scottish Finals and will be regarded by many as favourites on Sunday. However Tir Conail Harps will be hoping that they can put an end to Connollys’ dominance on Sunday and win their first title since 2001.
This will be Tir Conails first final appearance since that final when they beat Dunedin Connollys and they will be hoping that history can repeat itself on Sunday.
The Last meeting between the pair in the championship knockout stages was in the Semi Final of 2009. Tir Conail almost caused an upset on the day but Connollys won by 4 points and went on to win the Scottish & British Championships.
Meetings this year have resulted in 3 wins for Connollys, 1 win for Tir Conail and a draw.
League – 14-04-12
Tir Conail Harps 2-06 Vs Dunedin Connollys 1-09
League Final – 19-05-12
Dunedin Connollys 0-09 Vs Tir Conail Harps 0-07
Championship Round 3 – 21-06-12
Dunedin Connollys 1-12 Vs Tir Conail Harps 0-09
Davit Shield Final – 28-06-12
Tir Conail Harps 1-10 vs Dunedin Connollys 0-06
Championship Round 8 – 30-09-12
Dunedin Connollys 3-11 Vs Tir Conail Harps 0-01
In the big games this year there hasn’t been much between the sides and it’s likely to be the same on Sunday. Home advantage to Tir Conail Harps could be a decisive factor but it’s worth remembering that Connollys have won 7 of their 9 Championships away from home. The weather is likely to play a major factor and will probably result in a low scoring tight affair.
Connollys will need to produce a big performance if they are to keep hold of the Championship Trophy as this will be their toughest test since 2007 when they won back the championship from Glaschu Gaels.
Connollys Manager Cormac O Gara
“The lads have worked hard all year and they have been looking forward to this match since they won the Semi Final. People were probably thinking that we had one eye on the final given our performance in the semi final but that wasn’t the case. We have taken it one game at a time all year and it was the same in the semi Final. The Semi Final win over Glaschu Gaels was a nervy affair but the boys came through it in the end and that game should hopefully have given the lads the fright that is needed to bring out the best in them in the Final. In 09 and 11 we were pushed all the way in the semi Finals and we went on to win the final so you can only take it a game at a time. Glaschu came at us in the first half last Sunday and we didn’t deal with that very well but when we made a few changes the lads turned it around and we got the win which is all that matters. We know we can’t afford to let Tir Conail get away from us in the Final as they have a good team full of very good players, but we also know that we have plenty for them to worry about also and we hope to cause them plenty of problems. We have a good mix of experience and new players and any talk of us taking the result for granted is nonsense. We will be going into this game as if we were looking to win our First Championship (for many of our lads it will be their first should they win) and it will take one hell of a performance from Tir Conail to beat us. “
Whatever the outcome it promises to be a great clash between the two best teams in Scotland in 2012
Hopefully come Sunday at 4:30pm Connollys will be celebrating their 10th Scottish Championship success.
Scotland GAA Championship Semi Final
Dunedin Connollys 1-13 Vs Glaschu Gaels 0-11
Venue – Cavalry Park, Duddingston, Edinburgh
Dunedin Connollys secured passage to their 12 Scottish Final in a row with a 5 point win over fierce rivals Glaschu Gaels. In what was a very closely fought contest Connollys staged a dramatic second half comeback to turn a four point half time deficit into a 5 point win.
Conditions were fantastic for the match with not a breath of wind which is unusual for the pitch at Duddingston and a large crowd was present for the game between two sides who have shared the last 10 Scottish Championships between them
The games started at a frantic pace and both sides had a chance before Glaschu got the opening point of the game in the 3rd minute. This was quickly followed by a point from Connollys from the boot of Danny Loftus. It was a superbly angled shot and it lifted Connollys into another gear for the following 10 minutes. A point from play and a free from Alan Ward moved Connollys 2 clear and it looked as though this game was going to get away from Glaschu Gaels. In fact had it not been for some wayward shooting from Connolly’s players, Ward in particular the margin could and should have been greater. However Glaschu had come for a fight and attacked with abandonment throughout the first half. Their efforts started to reap rewards midway through the half when they reeled off 6 unanswered points. With the score at 7 points to 3 Connollys were in a bit of trouble and their cause wasn’t helped by the number of unforced errors they were making. By deploying an extra man in their defence Glaschu were able to snuff out most of Connollys attacks and were able to counter quickly with Glaschu Gaels main scoring treat came from their centre Forward and Corner Forward in the first half. Another free from Alan Ward brought the margin down to 3 points approaching half time but it was Glaschu who were to have the final say of the half with a point from a free.
Half Time Score Glaschu Gaels 0-08 Vs Dunedin Connollys 0-04
To their credit Connollys players didn’t panic at half time. Some strong but sensible words were exchanged between the players and they knew what they had to do in order to get themselves back in the game. All their efforts for the year rested on the next half hour and they weren’t about the throw in the towel just yet.
Now playing with whatever advantage the slight breeze gave them Connollys came out for the second half with their season on a knife edge. Could they overhaul a four point deficit and more importantly get on top of a Glaschu team that were winning all the mini battle in the first half. We were about to find out.
Connollys started the second period with extra motivation and drive as if it had taken them to be in this position to bring out the best in them. For the first 10 minutes of the second half the ball hardly made it into the Glaschu attaching half of the field. On the rare occasion it did it was retrieved quickly by a rejuvenated Connollys defence and returned to the Connollys forward line to get on with overturning the 4 point margin. However 2 points from frees from Brian McAteer and Alan Ward were the only reward for Connollys good start to the second period. It seemed like no matter what Connollys tried they couldn’t get the reward for their efforts. A pointed fee from Glaschu stretched the gap to 3 again and you felt that Glaschu would only need to score a couple more times to put this game beyond Connollys.
With 20 minutes left the next score was going to be vital and thankfully for Connollys it came from the trusted boot of Frank Molloy, who finished off a move with a swish of his left boot to the back of the Glaschu net. A goal that could change a season and yet it only levelled the game. It was like a knife to the heart of the Glaschu players and a shining beacon of hope for the Connollys players. Connollys’ players were now playing as if a great weight had been lifted from them and with a few positional changes started to win all the mini battles that they had lost in the first half. Glaschu Gaels tactic of getting extra men back in defence which had worked so well in the opening period was now proving their downfall and Connollys pushed up and denied their tiring backs of any space to work the ball out. Connollys got the next 6 points in a row (Alan Ward 1pt, Frank Molloy 2pts, Joe Crean 1pt and Brian McAteer 2pts) to open up a commanding lead with 5 minutes remaining. Glasgow responded with a couple of points in the closing minutes and Alan Ward rounded off the scoring with a simple free from in front of the Glaschu Goal. Glaschu’s challenge ended as soon as Connollys got their noses in front midway through the second period, but you have to give them credit for putting up a marvellous fight to Connollys for 45 Minutes of this game. They had been beaten heavily on 3 occasions in 2012 by Connollys prior to this match and anybody would have been forgiven for thinking that Connollys would have made easy work of this game. That wasn’t the case and Connollys were made to work hard all the way to the finish for this victory. Upon reflection Connollys’ will be glad of the competitive fixture and it may well be the catalyst for an improved Connollys’ performance in the Final.
Final Score Dunedin Connollys 1-13 Vs Glaschu Gaels 0-11
Knockout football is all about winning matches and Connollys know better than most that championships are only won when the final whistle is blown.
Best for Connollys in this game were
Ronan Mc Gurk – The Captains tireless wrokrate saw him all over the park. His move into the forwards to pick up the extra Glaschu defender in the middle of the second half was possible the move that swung the game in Connollys favour.
Mark Whelan – Worked hard all afternoon at midfield. Was at the centre of the battle in the second half and propelled Connollys forward from Midfield. Never took a backward step all day and kept everyone around him motivated.
Brian McAteer – Switched from wing back to Wwing forward for the second period and his influence was immense. Scored 2 very difficult and hugely important frees when Connollys were on the back foot.
Frank Molloy – The peerless Mayo man scored 1-02 in a 10 minute period in the second half to drag Connollys from a losing position into a winning one. He will be quick to praise the players around him for their assists but when he was needed he was there to finish off the moves.
Niall Considine, Ruairi Kirk (Replaced by Paul Kennedy), Richie Brutan, Ronan McGurk (CPT), Joe Crean, John Dolan, Brian McAteer, Mark Whelan, Robbie Howe, Mick Slowey (Replaced By Damien Holahan), Alan Ward, Danny Loftus (replaced by Dermot O Loughlin), Frank Molloy, Tony Gallagher, Michael Cochrane.
Subs Not Used
Ronan Fahy, Stephen Kerr, Paul Fallon, Kevin Callanan, Pat Lynch, Mike Nash, Martin Finn, pat Coogan, Cathal McCarty, Eoin O Reilly & Marcus McGinley.
Alan Ward 6pts (4 frees), Frank Molloy 1-02, Brian McAteer 3pts, Joe Crean 1pt, Danny Loftus 1pt
Scotland GAA Championship Semi Final Preview
Dunedin Connollys Vs Glaschu Gaels
Throw in 4:30 pm
Venue – Calvary Park, Duddingston Road West, Edinburgh, EH15 3QE
This Sunday will see old acquaintances Dunedin Connollys and Glaschu Gaels face each other for a place in the Championship Final on the 21st of October.
Connollys will be looking to reach their 12th Final in a row on Sunday but they will face a stern test from the team that has been in their way so many times in the past.
Connollys will be regarded as firm favourites for the match but nobody in the club will be taking anything for granted on Sunday.
Connolly’s last defeat in the knockout stage of the championship came at the hands of Glaschu Gaels back in County Final of 2006 and for 5 of the current squad it still remains a bitter pill. Paul Fallon, Richie Bruton, Cormac O Gara (Current Manager) Alan Ward and Peter Dillon all featured in that game in September 2006 and none of them will need reminding that they were also favourites that day.
Alan Ward recalls how the man he was marking scored the equalizing point to send the game to extra time.
“I remember thinking that time was nearly up and there were plenty of lads back in defence so I wasn’t going to follow him past half way, pretty bad decision as it turns out, as he got on the ball about 40 yards out and banged it over. At the time I didn’t think too much about it as we were heading into extra time but looking back in the days after and even now I was kicking myself for not following him. We didn’t show up in extra time and they took control and ran out deserved winners. You can’t take anything away from the Glasgow boys as they deserved a Championship win especially as we had beaten them in the 2 previous Finals but it was not the way we would have liked it to go. Nobody wants to lose a final but even less so one you are expecting to win”
Meetings this year have been one-sided in Connollys favour with 3 wins from 3 games however in their last meeting in August there were signs that Glasgow were starting to find some form.
Connollys have been in terrific form in this year’s championship winning 8 games out of 8 and racking up 175 Points and only conceding 40 along the way.
The history between these two teams will surely make for a competitive match and if Connollys are to progress they will need to bring their A game on Sunday.
Get yourselves down to Calvary Park on Sunday for the latest’s instalment of these two old foes.
Scottish Championship Round 8
Sunday 30th September 2012
Tir Conail Harps 0-01 Vs Dunedin Connolly’s 3-11
Dunedin Connollys played Tir Conail Harps in the final round of the championship round robin stages on Sunday last at Dunbeth Park in Coatbridge. Connollys had already qualified for the semi finals but there were important bragging rights at stake ahead of the upcoming championship semi finals.
Connollys maintained their winning ways with a very comfortable win over their closest rivals the Harps.
Cormac O’Gara’s men were well up for the game with good numbers at training and growing competition for places coming to the business end of the season.
The weather was bright and dry but windy and the pitch at Dunbeth Park is small with a slight slant to one end which didn’t help the game to flow as much as you would expect between these two sides. The game turned out to be very one sided in the end with neither side wanting to show their full hand or risk injury coming it to semi finals next weekend. Connolly’s had played Harps four times previously this year with two wins, one draw and one loss. Connolly’s were on a roll of having won all their matches since they lost to Harps on Wednesday the 28th of June in the David Cup final.
Harps were first to score from a free kick in the first minute but that was as good as it got for them as Connolly’s got into their stride with a point from Brian McAteer after 3 minutes. Tong Gallagher showed well for ball playing against the incline early in the first half and got himself on the score board with 2 good points. Frank Molloy and Michael Cochrane combined well for Connolly’s first goal on the 15 minute mark. Paul Fallon’s raiding run down the left wing almost resulted in a goal for Brian McAteer but he couldn’t steer Fallon’s deflected shot inside the far post. Paul Fallon was taken off injured on 20 minutes with Joe Crean brought on at left wing back. Brian McAteer made amends a few moments later when he followed in a shot for a point and managed to get there before the Goalkeeper to punch into the goal. Tony Gallagher added another point from distance to extend Connolly’s lead to 2-04 to 0-01 after 25 min. The work rate showed in the first half was very good and Connolly’s defense was very mean with all six backs keeping their men scoreless from play. Ronan McGurk and Frank Molloy combined to send Michael Cochrane through for a goal late in the first half but he spurred his opportunity. Some excellent defending from Paul Kennedy and Mark Whelan lead to a break away from which Brian McAteer showed how to find the net on 30 minutes to leave the half time score Connolly’s 3-04 to Harps 0-01
Connolly’s began the second half as they did the first with Brian McAteer getting on the score sheet with a point after 2 minutes. Connolly’s seemed to lose their momentum for 10 minutes and Harps got more time on the ball but Harps couldn’t convert their position into scores. Alan Ward added 2 points from frees and another point from Tony Gallagher put the game well and truly out of sight for Tir Conail. Once again Connollys defense was on top throughout the half with Richie Bruton & Damien Holahan making some telling interventions and Joe Crean providing himself to be a useful outlet at wing back.
Johnny McGill was brought in for an injured Michael Cochrane with 10 minutes left to play. Keelan Bolton, Ward and Gallagher all pointed from play in the final minutes of the game to finish off a good days work from the Connolly’s. Final score Connolly’s 3-11 Harps 0-01
Connolly’s were deserved winners with their work rate, accurate passing and urgency of play leaving the match over as a contest by half time. Connolly’s will play Glaschu Gaels in the semi final of the Scottish Championship next weekend where they will hope to extend their winning form in the championship.
Referee (Joe Bradley, Sands)
Niall Considine, Ronan McGurk, Richie Bruton, Paul Kennedy, Mark Whelan, Damien O Holahan, Paul Fallon, Robbie Howe, Keelan Boltan, Michael Slowey, Alan Ward, Brian McAteer, Michael Cochrane, Tony Gallagher, Frank Molloy.
Subs – Joe Crean For Paul Fallon, Johnny McGill for Michael Cochrane, Pat Lynch, Pat Coogan, Eoin O’Reilly, Cathal McCarty, Ruairi Kirk, Mike Nash.
Brian McAteer (2-02), Tony Gallagher (5 Points), Alan Ward (3 Points), Frank Molloy (1 Goal), Keelan Boltan (1 Point).
ALL IRELAND FOOTBALL FINAL SUN 23RD SEPT
DONEGAL V MAYO @ 3.30PM
All the action will be shown LIVE on our 2 HUGE HD Projector Screens and 4 HD TV's.
Get down to Malones early to see the minor final
DUBLIN V MEATH @ 1.15PM
As per usual at Malone's we'll be serving up the best pub grub in town
And the match will be followed by fantastic Live Irish Music with
So come on down for the Sunday Session and wear your county colours with pride and as always, enjoy the craic!
Dunedin Connollys Race Night
Malones Irish Bar
Saturday 15th September 2012
Race 1 – Sponsored By Havelock Europa – Winners Marcus McGinley and Ronan Fahy
Race 2 – Sponsored by Theatre Royal – Winner Mark Whelan
Race 3 – Sponsored by No 1 Currency – Winner Helen Keenan
Race 4 - Sponsored by Bellstane Dental Care – Winner John Dolan
Race 5 - Sponsored by McAleer & Rush – Winner Pat Coogan
Race 6 – Sponsored by the Dillon Family – Winners Cathal McCarty & Sandra Molloy
Race 7 – Sponsored by the O’Loughlin Family – Winner Keelan Bolton
Race 8 – Sponsored by Malone’s Bar – Winner Martin Finn
Race 9 – Sponsored by Royal Transport – Winner Mark Bowman/Mark Lindsay
Race 10 – Sponsored by Coffey group – Winners Mark Whelan & Arup Infrastructure
Thanks to all our Sponsors and all our members for taking part
Scottish Championship Round 7
Saturday 8th September 2012
Sands MacSwineys 0-06 Dunedin Connollys 3-19
Dunedin Connollys have qualified for the semi finals of the 2012 Scottish Championship, finishing top of the table with a game to spare after an impressive victory over Sands MacSwineys on Saturday the 8th of September.
Connollys were rarely troubled on their way to a 7th successive win in the Championship group stages. The match was played at Dunabeth Park in Coatbridge in good conditions and Connollys made hay while the sun shone.
Connollys started the game at a ferocious pace and had registered 5 points inside the first 8 minutes. All 5 points coming from the boot of Danny Loftus who was out to show everyone what Connollys were missing while he was away. He added 4 more by the end of the match in what was a very good display from the big Mayo centre forward. Loftus wasn’t the only one trying to impress and there was good performance from a number of the Connollys players with Mick Slowey, Paul Fallon & Damien Holahan picking up a lot of possession in the first half. Points were added to Connollys first half score by Paul Fallon and Johnny McGailey and Dermot O Loughlin and Mick Slowey got a goal each. Sands response came late in the half with a point from play from Midfielder Stephen Sleven and a converted free from Joe Bradley.
Half Time Score Sands MacSwineys 0-02 Vs Dunedin Connollys 2-08
Connollys made no changes at half time and expectedly with a big lead they were slow to come of the blocks for the Second half. Sands got the first few points of the second half and it took Connollys 15 minutes to register their first score. Connollys were creating a lot of chances but just weren’t finishing off the moves.
Connollys introduced Mark Whelan and Tony Gallagher for the last 15 minutes and suddenly the gates opened again and they started to get the scoreboard ticking over. Tony Gallagher bagged 1-03 in his 15 minute cameo and looked extremely sharp and could have had a second goal near the end but for a good save from the Sands goalkeeper. John Dolan and Larry Bergin entered the fray with 10 minutes remaining and added fresh legs to Connollys attack. Points were added in the final stages by Mark Whelan, Danny Loftus, Paul Fallon, Dermot O’Loughlin and Mick Slowey. Larry Bergin rounded off the scoring with a point from play. It was Larry’s last action of the year for Connollys as he departs for Australia in a few weeks time. We wish Larry all the best down under and thank him for his contribution in the last 3 years.
Sands got 2 points towards the end of the match and finished the match slightly the stronger as Connollys eased of the gas.
Final Score Sands MacSwineys 0-06 Vs Dunedin Connollys 3-19
Connollys finish their championship group stage with a visit to Tir Conaill harps on the 30th of September
Stephen Kerr, Mike Nash, Richie Brutan, Paul Fallon, Pat Lynch, Damien Houlihan, Ruairi Kirk, Robbie Howe, Keelan Boltan, Pat Coogan, Danny Loftus, Mick Slowey, Johnny McGailey, Dermott O’Loughlin.
Ronan McGurk, Alan Ward, Brian McAteer, Tony Gallagher, Mark Whelan, Larry Bergin, Joe Crean, Michael Cochrane, Liam McGinley, Paul Kennedy & John Dolan
Danny Loftus 0-09, Tony Gallagher 1-03, Demot O Loughlin & Mick Slowey 1-01, Paul Fallon 0-02, Mark Whelan, Johnny McGailey & Larry Bergin 0-01.
Scottish Championship Round 6
Sunday 2nd September 2012
Dundee Dalriada 0-02 Dunedin Connollys 1-17
Connollys travelled to Sheddocksley Playing Fields in Aberdeen and Sunday last with intensions of maintaining their 100% success rate in the Scottish Championship. Connollys trainer Cormac O’Gara had prepared his team well all week and a good squad of 24 men togged out.
Conditions were good for the game with a slight breeze favouring Aberdeen in the first half.
Both teams took 10 minutes to settle into the game but in the end it was a very one sided game which didn’t really test Connolly’s. Connolly’s who were looking for their 6th win in the championship, did so without any real trouble.
Aberdeen were first to score in the first half after some sloppy shooting from Connolly’s. But once Connollys got more comfortable in front of goals there was no holding back. John Dolan opened the Connolly’s account after 7 minutes and further scores were added by Liam Mc’Ginley, Tony Gallagher, Dermot O Loughlin, Alan Ward, Joe Crean and Brian McAteer. A Brian McAteer goal on 20 minutes was the main highlight to the first half which ended Aberdeen 0-01 Vs Connolly’s 1-08
Manager Cormac O Gara didn’t have much to say to the boys at half time as they would be aided by the breeze in the second half and with a lead of 10 points it was just a matter of maintaining their form for the second half.
Cormac brought on as many subs as he could in the second half. Michael Slowey, Ruairi Kirk, Michael Nash, Danny Lofus and Ronan Fahy all being introduced at different stages.
Connollys picked off points in the second half at relative ease, the pick of the bunch coming from Tony Gallagher who curled over from 35 yards out on the left.
Connollys ran our deserved winners on a scoreline of 1-17 to 0-02
After a win like this the future looks good for the Connolly’s lads. Competition for places will get more intense and a place in the play off’s in now guaranteed. Next match is away to Sands MacSwineys on the 8th of September at 12 noon.
Niall Considine, Ronan McGurk, Paul Kennedy, Paul Fallon, Joe Crean, Damien Houlihan, John Dolan, Robbie Howe, Keelan Boltan, Tony Gallagher, Alan Ward, Brian McAteer, Michael Corcreran, Dermott O’Loughlin, Liam McGinley.
Michael Slowey, Ruarai Kirk, Michael Nash, Daniel Loftus, Ronan Fahy, Larry Bergin, Pat Lynch, Pat Coogan, Mark Conlan.
Brian McAteer 1-02, Alan Ward & Liam McGinley 4pts, Tony Gallagher 3pts, Robbie Howe, Joe Crean, John Dolan & Dermot O Loughlin 1pt.
Dunedin Connollys ladies team returns to training on the 29th of August in preperation for the upcoming University League.
Training will be in the meadows on Wednesday night the 29th of August at 7:30pm.
Training times may vary from week to week so please contact Damien Holahan (07743 424 604) or Helen Keenan (07742 257 196) if you are interested in playing.
25th August 2012
Dunedin Connollys 2-15 Cú Chulainns 2-09
This was the second meeting with Cú Chulainns this year having previously played them in a challenge in April down in Newcastle.
This time the match was played in the Connollys home pitch (Portobello Sports Grounds, Duddingston) Throw in was at 4.20pm on Saturday 25/08/12. Dunedin fielded a strong side with Frank Molloy making a return from a troublesome ankle injury which kept him out of play for the last month and Dermot O Loughlin was available to line out at full forward.
Conditions were perfect for football, over cast with very little wind. Showers earlier that morning cleared off for a fine evening for a game. The game was well contested between 2 teams who know each other well having played each other in last year’s British Quarter Final. Connollys had a large panel of 25 players where as Cú Chulainns brought 17 players which put them under pressure in the final 10 minutes. Connolly’s manager Cormac O Gara was keen to see all the players playing matches with the run in to the Scottish championship which will continue with an away match against Dundee Dalriada on Sunday the 2nd of September.
Cú Chulainns started the better playing with the incline and were up 0-02 to 0-00 after 10 min. After a slow start Connollys started to get a grip of possession and when Padraig Sheerin collected a breaking ball from full forward Dermot O Loughlin and placed is calmly into the back of the net after 12 minutes they never looked back. Connollys took over from this point and added 6 more points from play and one 45. Dermot O Loughlin also added a second goal which left the half time score 2-07 to 0-02 in favor of the Connollys.
The second half started much the same as the first had started with Cú Chulainns getting away quick and registering a goal and a point inside the first 3 minutes. Connolly’s did respond well and hit back with two points from play in succession. Scoring was very tit for tat between the two sides, although Cú Chulainns were much more composed in the second period and held possession very well. The addition of Connolly’s three subs Michael Slowey, Richie Brutan and Frank Molloy gave Connolly’s the legs that they needed the granuntee them a 6 point win.
Niall Considine, Ruairi Kirk, John Dolan, Ronan McGurk, Paul Fallon, Damien Holahan, Joe Crean, Mark Whelan, Robbie Howe, Tony Gallagher, Alan Ward, Brian McAteer, Michael Cochran, Dermot O Loughlin, Padraig Sheerin.
Subs, Michael Slowey, Richie Brutan, Frank Molloy, Larry Bergin, Keelan Bolton, Michael Nash, Pat Coogan, Eoin O Reily, Cathal McCarthy and Pat Lynch
Alan Ward 7pts, Padraig Sheerin 1-02, Dermot O Loughlin 1 Goal, Tony Gallagher & Brian McAteer 2 pts, Paul Fallon & Frank Molloy 1pt
Scotland GAA Championship Round 5
Dunedin Connollys 1-15 Vs Glaschu Gaels 0-05
Dunedin Connolly's made it 5 wins from 5 games in the 2012 Scotland GAA Championship at Calvary Park, Duddingston on Thursday the 16th of August.
Cormac O Gara’s charges were in good form with Liam McGinley (4 points from play) and Joe Crean (3 points from play) standing out.
Weather conditions were almost perfect but for a slight breeze blowing from the dressing room end of the pitch and the game was played in the correct spirit by both teams. Connollys were trying to maintain their perfect record in the championship to date and they did so with little fuzz although the number of missed opportunities might be of concern to the management.
Connolly opted to play with whatever wind advantage there was in the first half and were on top for much of the first period. The work rate from Connollys players was perhaps the highlight of the first half with numerous turnovers inside the Glaschu 45 meter line leading to scores. Michael Slowey opened the scoring for Connollys coming off his wing to curl over a score from 20 yards. Scores were added from Liam McGinley (2), Joe Crean, Brian McAteer and Michael Cochrane to give Connollys a 6 point advantage with 15 minutes played. The next score was a thing of beauty from Dermot O Loughlin who collected on the edge of the large square and in one motion turned and shot high past the Glaschu keeper to the roof of the net. Glaschu did improve towards the end of the first half but had little joy in front of goal shooting 3 or 4 wides when they could have done with a score. Further scores were added by Alan Ward, Brian McAteer and Michael Cochrane for Connollys to round up the first Half. Ward had a chance to put the game out of sight with 5 minutes remaining but he rushed his shot and it came off the outside of the post and wide.
Half time Score Dunedin Connollys 1-09 Vs Glaschu Gaels 0-00
Neither team made any changes at half time and it was Glaschu who started the brighter in the second period with a score in the first 30 seconds. Connollys now playing against the breeze were made to work a lot harder for both possession and scores and were guilty of some poor shooting in the opening stages. Joe Crean opened Connollys second half account with a good point on the run. Creans runs from half back were proving to be a great outlet for Connollys and he was on hand again mid way through the second half to fist over a point from in front of the goal. Glaschu were having more joy in this half and knocked over some good scores in response to most of the Connollys attacks. The score of the second half came from the left hand side of the field when some marvellous interplay between McGinley and Cochrane lead to McGinley curling over from 35 yards. It was quickly followed by Wards second point of the night, with Cochrane and McGinley again involved in the build up. Glaschu again responded with a score but it was Connollys that finished the stronger with a point from centre back Mark Whelan and another good score from play from McGinley.
Final Score – Dunedin Connollys 1-15 Vs Glaschu Gaels 0-05
Connollys were deserving winners on the night but there were signs that the Glaschu team were starting to get their season in gear and that should keep Connollys on their toes for future meetings. Connollys were pushed all the way but never really troubled.
Referee – Sean Gavaghan
Niall Considine (Stephen Kerr 40Mins), Damien Holahan (Pat Lynch 50Mins), Paul Kennedy (Paul Fallon 40 Mins), Ronan McGurk , Joe Crean , Mark Whelan , John Dolan, Robbie Howe, Kealan Bolton, Mick Slowey (Ruarai Kirk 50Mins) , Alan Ward, Brian McAteer (Larry Bergin 50Mins), Liam McGinley, Dermot O Loughlin, Michael Cochrane.
Liam McGinley 4pts, Joe Crean – 3pts, Dermot O’Loughlin – 1 Goal, Alan Ward, Michael Cochrane, Brian McAteer – 2pts, Mark Whelan, Mick Slowey – 1pt
Morkam Cup Success for Dunedin Connollys Men's Team
Dunedin Connollys Men's team won the John Morkam Memorial Cup at Stirling on Saturday last with a late rally in the Final match against Dundee Dalriada.
The tournament featured teams from Sands MacSwineys, Dundee Dalriada and 2 teams from Dunedin Connollys.
Connollys Team 1 beat Dundee and Sands convincingly on their way to the final while team 2 put in 2 good displays only for their score taking to let them down as they suffered 2 defeats.
The final was contested between Connollys Team 1 and Dundee.
With the games only being 20 minutes long the team that got off to the better start was always going to have the best chance to win the match.
Connollys however did it the hard way and let Dundee race into a 3 point to 1 lead with 12 minutes elapsed.
Poor decision making and poor shooting wasn’t helping Connollys cause but a free brought them back to within a point and it was all to play for with 5 minutes remaining.
Tony Gallagher latched on to a breaking ball from a Dundee kick out and moved the ball to the on running Alan Ward who moved inside the defender and lashed the ball to the roof of the net.
The keeper could and probably should have done more to stop the shot but Connollys didn’t care not as they had now one hand on the trophy.
2 minutes later and they had both hands firmly on it when Ward again produced a rather fortunate goal from a free kick 30 meters from goal.
5 points up with time nearly up you would have been forgiven if you though it was over but Dundee didn’t think so and forced the issue again when the won and duly dispatch a penalty.
Time for one more Kick out and to everyone’s relief Connollys won it and launched the final attach.
The ref blew the final whistle and Connollys had won the Morkam Cup again.
DUNEDIN OG VISIT CROKE PARK FOR ALL IRELAND FOOTBALL FINALS
40 Underage Boys and Girls from the Dunedin Og Club visited Croke Park on Saturday the 4th of August 2012 to Take in the All ireland Quarter Finals between Mayo Vs Down & Dublin Vs Laois. The players also took part in a series of matches against the Underage children from Dublin GAA Club Na Fianna.
DUNEDIN OG ON STV NEWS
STV News Edinburgh covered one of the underage coaching sessions at Leith Academy.
The underage playeres were preparing for their trip to play Na Finina in Dublin on the 4th of August.
The Trip will also take in a Visit to Croke Park to watch the ALL Ireland Quater Finals
Scottish Championship 2012
Connollys 1-15 Vs Dundee Dalriada 1-08
Dunedin Connollys secured their forth win in the 2012 Scottish Championship in a tough encounter at home to Dundee Dalriada on the 22nd July 2012. A strong wind made conditions difficult for both teams with Connollys opting to play into the breeze in the first half. They worked hard to stay in contention and at half time the score was level at 1-06 apiece. Connollys could have been ahead were it not for 2 fine saves from the Dundee Goalkeeper. Larry Bergin got Connollys first score and points from Joe Crean, Mark Whelan, Johnny McGailey and Alan Ward (2) along with a fine goal Brian McAteer made up the first half scorers.
There were some words of reassurance at half time from the management that the Connolly’s lads had every chance of securing the win and going three points clear of Tir Conaill Harps at the top of the table.
Connolly’s used the breeze to their advantage in the second half and were soon in command of the game. Brian McAteer opened the scoring in the second half with a good pointed free from 40 yards. Connollys reeled off 4 more points to a single by Dundee in the next 15 minutes and it was always going to be tough to come back from there against the wind for the lads from Dundee. Connollys were now finding a lot of space and were in not for some wayward shooting in good positions the margin of victory could have been higher. However the outscored Dundee 4 points to 1 in the last quarter to run out winner by 7 Points.
Connollys team 1.Niall Considine, 2.Pat Lynch, 3.Damien O Houlihan, 4.Neil McAuliffe, 5.Joe Crean 6.Mark Whelan, 7.John Dolan, 8.Brian McAteer 9.Robbie Howe, 10.Larry Bergin, 11.Alan Ward, 12.Ronan McGurk, 14.Johny McGailey, 13.Martin Finn. 15. Tony Gallagher,
Subs used Ruairi Kirk, Mark Conlon, Padraig Sheerin, Mike Nash,
Alan Ward – 0-7 (1 free), Brian McAteer 1-2 (1 Free), Mark Whelan, Joe Crean, John McGailey, Robbie Howe, Larry Bergin & Ronan McGurk – 1 point each
DUNEDIN CONNOLLYS PUB GOLF NIGHT
FRIDYA 20TH JULY 2012
Dunedin Connollys Senior teams had a great time at a recently organised Pub Golf Night .
There was over 30 of the Senior Ladies and Men's Team in attendance.
There were some winners and losers in the Round of Golf but everyone had a great time.
Thanks to Everybody that attended
MALONES IRISH BAR EDINBURGH PRESENT DUNEDIN CONNOLLYS WITH NEW GEAR FOR 2012
Dunedin Connollys Club Treasurer Alan Ward (far left) with Men’s Team Manager Cormac O’Gara (far right) being presented with a set of Jerseys by Keith Russell and Simon Keane of Malones Irish Bar in Edinburgh
Malones Irish Bar Edinburgh are the Senior Men’s and Ladies teams sponsors for 2012.
DAVITT SHIELD FINAL DEFEAT FOR CONNOLLY’S IN GLASGOW
Davitt Shield Cup Final
Tir Conaill Harps 1-10 Dunedin Connolly’s 0-6
Dunedin Connolly’s were left wondering what might have been after they succumbed to their first competitive defeat under Cormac O’Gara since he re-took the reigns of manager earlier this year. The defeat itself coming at Glasgow’s Lochinch Park which the club hopes will become more of a blessing in disguise than anything else.
The game itself possessed a fast tempo to it despite the slippery conditions underfoot and there was no let up in terms of commitment from both teams. Not entirely surprising when one considers that this was the forth meeting between these two juggernauts of the Scottish GAA scene.
For their part, Harps had not won any of the previous three meetings this season but their early play suggested they were determined to rectify that factor when they drew first blood with the opening score. Connolly’s responded well to this with scores from Alan Ward and Brian McAteer before Daniel Gallagher levelled up matters again for Harps.
Connolly’s at this point were perhaps becoming guilty of misplacing too many passes yet their quality shone through that when a frees from Ward and a point from John fee restored their lead. However, this was perhaps the paper over the cracks as Harps pounced back with two scores in succession which gave them a lead of 0-4 to 0-04 at the break.
Despite being still very much in the contest at this stage, hindsight was to show the last time Connolly’s would have any real say in this cup final was already passed them.
Tir Conaill started the second half much the brighter and relied off two quick points.
The Edinburgh club did show a few signs of positivity in their play at the start of the second half and another free from Ward made it a one point game again. Despite O’Gara’s calls for calm and trust in their own ability to recover the lead, it was taken away from them when Derry O’Connor and Gallagher stretched the Harps lead again.
Four points in row in the middle of the second half for the home side was the undoing of Connollys and meant that Tir Conaill held a commanding lead of 0-10 to 0-05 as the game approached its final ten minutes of play. Frank Molloy threw Connolly’s with a determinedly well-taken point however any hopes of a comeback were dashed when O’Connor broke through for Harps and found the net with a low and well-driven shot that Niall Considine was unable to stop despite his best efforts.
Credit must go to Tir Conaill Harps who fully deserved their win on the night.
The defeat may mean Connolly’s have missed out on the chance to lift the Davitt Shield trophy, however as already mentioned, there is a hope and a belief that the team can convert this disappointment into a learning experience. With the club being serious contenders for the Scottish Championship, learning from tougher games like these could prove to be vital along that hopeful road to success.
Niall Considine; Neil McAuliffe, Paul Kennedy, Ruari Kirk; Joe Crean, Mark Whelan, Ronan McGurk; John Fee (0-01), Johnny McGill; Robbie Howe, Alan Ward (0-3), Brian McAteer (0-1); Liam McGinley, Frank Molloy (0-1), Daniel Loftus.
Richie Bruton for Joe Crean (33mins)
Damien Hoalahan for Ruari Kirk (47mins)
By Jonathan Foley
Dunedin Connolly’s PRO
CONNOLLY’S MAINTAIN WINNING FORM IN CHAMPIONSHIP
Scottish Championship Round 4
Dunedin Connolly’s 1-12 Tir Conaill Harps 0-09
Dunedin Connolly’s maintained their winning form in the Championship with a six point win over Tir Conaill Harps on a damp and drizzly Thursday evening at Duddingston. The sides meeting for the third time in as many months and despite the wet and slippery conditions, the game was played at a relatively fast pace right throughout.
The home side drew first blood with an Alan Ward free and the lead was furthered when Liam McGinley’s dropping effort found its way over Anton McLean in the Harps goal and into the net. After brief concerns over an injury to Neil McAuliffe, Johnny McGill stretched the Connolly’s lead further with a well taken score.
Never ones to lie down though, Tir Chonaill Harps responded with a brace of scores. The second of which was a free from Daniel Gallagher, who was certainly not endearing himself to the Connolly’s contingent that were present after a war-of-words with Ward. Thankfully, the situation did calm without escalating to anything sinister.
Ward was amid the action again when he pointed well after a well delivered pass from Paul Fallon shortly before Michael Doherty pulled one back for Harps right on the interval. The sides breaking for the half-time respite with a score of 1-03 to 0-03 going in favour of the Edinburgh based club.
The second half started brightly enough for Connolly’s with Frank Molloy converting a point from a somewhat acute angel before McGinley added another. These scores where quickly cancelled out by a pair of Tir Conaill scores – both from frees – which kept the game alive as a contest with only a goal being the divisive factor.
It was at this point though where Cormac O’Gara’s men really upped it in to second gear and their efforts were rewarded with a series of seven scores in succession. A trio from Ward and scores from Molloy, Fallon, McGinley and McGill put the hosts into a position of a commanding lead going into the final ten minutes.
Holding a lead of 1-12 to 0-05 though, the Connolly’s defence might well have possessed concerns when they conceded four points in succession to a seemingly already diminished visiting side. Nevertheless, the result had been earned at this stage of the game and the victory was confirmed by the whistle minutes later.
So for Connolly’s, they have followed up on that win they had over their Glasgow based rivals in the League Final in May with another win over the Championship. It won’t be long though until these two lock horns again. Thursday 28 June will see them contest the Davitt Shield final in Glasgow.
Man of the Match: Dermot O’Loughlin
Dunedin Connolly’s: Niall Considine; Neil McAuliffe, Paul Kennedy, Ruairi Kirk; Joe Crean, Mark Whelan, Paul Fallon (0-2); Robbie Howe, Johnny McGill (0-2); Michael Cochrane, Frank Molloy (0-2), Daniel Loftus; Liam McGinley (1-1), Dermot O’Loughlin (0-1), Alan Ward (0-4).
Larry Bergin for Micahel Cochrane (52mins)
Padhraig Sheerin for Dermot O’Loughlin (53mins)
Paul Dillon for Joe Crean (57mins)
By Jonathan Foley
Dunedin Connolly’s PRO
GAELIC SPORTS CAST
GAELIC FOOTBALL YOUTH PROJECT PROSPERING IN EDINBURGH
Club Treasurer Alan Ward and Club Development Officer Niall Considine speak to Gaelic Sports Cast about all thing Dunedin Connollys.
Click the link below to listen to the Pod Cast
BRITISH INTERCOUNTY JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP
SCOTLAND VS YORKSHIRE
2PM SUNDAY 17TH JUNE
VENUE - NEWCASTLE
BRITISH INTERCOUNTY JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP
SCOTLAND VS GLOUCESTERSHIRE
2PM SUNDAY 10TH JUNE
OLD BEDIANS MANCHESTER
Unfortunately our bus broke down on route to collect the Mens team and they were unable to travel.
Match was forfietted
CONNOLLY’S START THE DAVITT SHIELD WITH A WIN.
Davitt Shield Semi Final
Dundee Dalraida 0-10 Dunedin Connolly’s 5-11
The men of Dunedin Connolly’s continued their run of winning and high-scoring form on Saturday afternoon when they swept aside Dundee Dalraida in the Daviit Shield. The game itself being played on a warm and quite humid day at the Sheddocksley in Aberdeen and it was a win that portrayed the depth and strength of Cormac O’Gara’s panel as a number of changes in personnel were made.
With a number of players from Thursday night’s Championship win over Sands being unavailable for selection, it would be harsh to suggest that the manager had to proverbially squeeze square pegs into round holes. Instead, the man from the Donegal Ghaeltacht region utilised his resources well and deployed a team that played in a manner that suggested this positive approach is panel deep that is not merely assigned to the usual starting 15.
The game itself did not start ideally for Connolly’s when they found themselves two points down early on. An angled shot by Tony Gallagher got them back in it before Liam McGinley levelled things up. The sides’ horns were locked again at 0-4 to -04 soon after before a string of Connolly’s scores started to make their authority prevail. McGinley, Alan Ward and Johnny McGill got the points on the score-card before a left footed shot by Brian McAteer found the net to further the lead.
Frank Molloy added a second goal before the break after a good inter-change of passes with Micginley and Ward and although Dundee knocked on the door with two scores of their own, it was to be the Edinburgh club who held a lead of 2-07 to 0-06 at the interval. O’Gara opted to make no immediate changes or substitutions yet urged the necessity of making sure that the fundamentals of the team’s play improved.
When the second-half commenced, Niall Considine was required to pull off an important save that, had it gone in, would have pulled Dundee right back into the contest. Robbie Howe capitalised on this with a well-taken goal of his own just minutes later. Another brace of goals were added when Ward and Molly got in on the goal-scoring act again and a McGinley point made it 4-10 to 0-08 going into the last fifteen minutes.
O’Gara could now deploy his strength of panel’s depth further by giving debuts to Jonathan Foley and Cathal McCarty. Tony Gallagher, who had got Connolly’s first point of the evening and he was also to get the last. That’s not to say that the scoring was over with though as newly introduced Cathal McCarty got a goal for himself with a lovely soccer-style finish.
Dundee got a pair of points for themselves as the final stages closed in but in a overall sense, the day was Dunedin Connolly’s and they deservedly collected the win that they were most deserving of. Matters now turn to next week’s British InterCounty Championship fixture in Manchester where Scotland face Gloucestershire on Sunday 10 June.
Man of the Match: Robbie Howe
Moment of the Match: Cathal McCarty’s slow teasing goal that rounded off the night’s scoring for Connolly’s.
Dunedin Connolly’s: Niall Considine; Pat Lynch, Joe Crean, Mark Conlon; Johnny McGill (0-1), Brian McAteer (1-0) Robbie Howe (1-0), Gavin Dempsey; Larry Bergin, Frank Molloy (1-2), Tony Gallagher (0-2); Liam McGinley (0-4), Alan Ward (1-2).
Jonathan Foley for Mark Conlon (44mins)
Cathal McCarty (1-0) for Liam McGinley (50 mins)
Liam McGinley for Gavin Dempsey (52 mins)
By Jonathan Foley
PRO Dunedin Connolly’s
CONNOLLY’S EMPHATIC WIN OVER SANDS
Scottish Championship Round 2
Dunedin Connolly’s 4-20 Sands MacSwineys 0-01
The men of Dunedin Connollys sent out an emphatic message to the rest of Scotland that will surely echo into the rest of Britain with a resounding win over Sands MacSwineys on Thursday night at Duddingston. A victory that showed there was no sign of complacency creeping into Cormac O’Gara’s panel after having already put Glasgow Gaels to the sword just eight days earlier.
Conditions on this night against Sands though were perhaps not entirely ideal. A rain-soaked day in the capital city meant that the pitch was a shade damp and slippery in patches. To their credit nonetheless, Connollys worked this to their advantage with a positive display of quick passing and clinical finishing that Sands just couldn’t cope with in the way that they would have wanted to.
Liam McGinley opened the scoring with a lovely shot that he took while on the turn away from his marker. The floodgates were opened from there on in and by the midway stage of the first-half, the home side held a commanding lead of nine points without reply. These scores were shared by a Brian McAteer free, Johnny McGill, Alan Ward, Joe Crean, Frank Molloy and Mark Whelan.
Questions were raised over a shot by Ward that initially appeared to go over the bar although it was adjudged to be ruled as a wide after the referee consulted with his umpire. Showing no signs of depletion however, Connolly’s quickly turned this minor annoyance to scores. A point from Molloy was almost as quickly followed up with a goal from Ward himself; testifying that clinical finishing.
Those same two players shared another three scores amongst themselves as half-time drew in with a score of 1-13 to 0-00 going in favour of the Edinburgh club. O’Gara seemed content at the interval yet, refusing to rest on his laurels, he emphasised the importance of a tactical approach he had in mind that he wanted to see used more progressively in the second-half.
The second-half itself saw a whitewash of scores from Connolly’s. The first of which came from Richie Bruton before McAteer pointed well from a well-executed 45. Sands did get off the mark at this point when Joe Bradley slotted over a free from close range. It was at this point in the game where O’Gara made a few adjustments in personnel by introducing four substitutes in six minutes.
Amid all the seriousness of the affair, there was a moment of humour when Joe Crean’s sideline-ball had everyone questioning what is the actual GAA ruling on passes from the by-line that don’t actually come into play. Amid the playful jibes, the Roscommon man had the last laugh when he coolly slotted over from distance after brilliantly side-stepping his marker soon after.
Then came the proverbial goal rush when newly introduced Martin Finn got himself a brace either side of a second goal of the night for Alan Ward. Each goal being well worked showing great understanding amongst the forwards. McGinley and Ward stretched the Connolly’s lead with a point apiece and the evening was rounded off with a long range score Robbie Howe which somehow caught everyone out as it bounced in front of goal unchallenged and found its way over the bar.
So a comfortable 4-20 to 0-01 win for Connollys means that they remain, not only unbeaten under O’Gara, but in noticeably good form. In the last two games alone, his team have amassed a total of 56 points in total and conceding just six. The players will now have a brief break from Championship matters as they now put their focus into the away game against Dundee Dalriada in this Saturday’s Davitt Shield game which takes place in Aberdeen.
Dunedin Connolly’s: Niall Considine; Damien Holahan, John Dolan, Ronan McGurk (0-1); Joe Crean (0-2), Richie Bruton (0-1), Mark Whelan (0-1); Robbie Howe (0-1), Johnny McGill (0-1); Tony Gallagher, Frank Molloy (0-4), Brian McAteer (0-3); Liam McGinley (0-3), Alan Ward (2-3), Larry Bergin.
Substitutions: Pat Lynch for Ronan McGurk, Peter Dillon for Riche Bruton (37 mins), Larry Bergin for Martin Finn (2-0)(38mins), Neil McAuliffe for Damien Holahan (45mins), Michael Nash for Brian McAteer (45mins)
By Jonathan Foley
Dunedin Connolly’s PRO
Congratulaions to Marathon Runners
Dunedin Connollys would like to congratulate, Pat Lynch, Finbar O'Leary, Cathal McCarty & Gavin Demsey on their recent completion of the Edinburgh Marathon on the 27th of May. All 4 men made it round the 26.2 Mile course in good time and in reasonably good health. Well done to the 4 Lads.
Well done also to Alan Ward, Helen Keenan, Dermott O Loughlin, Barbara O Loughlin, Louise Bannon, Sue O Sullivan & Liam McGinley who completed the Edinburgh 10K race on the 26th of May.
The runner raised money to go towards Edinburgh Sick kids Hospital.
Dunedin Connollys 2012 Prize Draw Winners
1st Prize - £1000 - Fiona O Sullivan
2nd Prize - £400 - Natalie McKay
3rd Prize - £100 - Mary O riordan
4th Prize - 2 All Ireland Final Tickets - Joe Whooley
Congratulations to all the Winners
CONNOLLYS GET OFF TO A FLYER IN THE CHAMPIONSHIP
Scottish Championship Round 1
Glaschu Gaels 0-05 Vs Dunedin Connollys 2-18
Dunedin Connollys took their first steps towards reclaiming the Scottish Championship on Wednesday night with a comfortable victory over Glaschu Gaels at Lochinch Park in Glasgow.
There is still a long way to go in this year’s championship but the Connollys lads will be happy with their overall performance in this game but will look to improve in the remaining 7 rounds before the semi finals.
There will be tougher tasks ahead in the championship but it was thestart the manager Cormac O Gara would have been looking for.
In the opening stages of the match both teams were on a par but after about 5 minutes of this contest it became apparent that the Connollys were going to have far too much for their Glasgow counter parts. Alan Ward, Martin Finn, Michael Cochrane, contributed 6 points in the opening half while Dermott O Loughlin and Cochrane again got a goal apiece. Cochrane’s goal came from a poor clearance from the Glasgow keeper but the goal was superbly taken as he lofted it over the retreating keeper and in off the underside of the crossbar. That was the final action of the first half.
Half time score Dunedin Connollys 2-06 vs Glasgow Gaels 0-02
The Second half was similar to the first in that Connollys comfortably outscored Glasgow by 12 points to 3 but the Glasgow side did have more possession in the second period. Their possession however did not convert into scores, with excellent defending & counter attacking from the Connollys being the pattern of the half. Connollys had a good spread of scores in the second half with 7 men getting their names on the scoresheet. The pick of the scores came near the end of the game from Joe Crean who came from wing back to get on the end of a move that started deep in Connollys defence.
Niall Considine, Neil McAullife, John Dolan, Damien Holahan, Joe Crean (2pts), Mark Whelan, Ronan McGurk (Cpt), Robbie Howe (1pt), Johnny McGill (1pt), Larry Bergin, Alan Ward (8pts, 3 Frees), Brian McAteer (2pts , 1x45), Martin Finn (1pt), Dermott O Loughlin (1-1), Michael Cochrane (1-1).
Subs – John Monahan for Larry Bergin, Peter Dillon for Damien Holahan, Padraig Sheerin (1pt) for Martin Finn, Eoin OReilly, Pat Coogan, Cathal McCarty, Ronan Fahy.
CONNOLLYS RETAIN SCOTTISH LEAGUE TITLE
Scottish County League Final 2012
Dunedin Connolly’s 0-09 Tir Conaill Harps 0-07
There was scenes of joyful celebration for Dunedin Connolly’s on Saturday afternoon when they retained the Scottish County League title for a fourth year in succession. Cormac O’Gara has led his men to this honour just as he did when he last took up the managerial reign three years ago and what’s sweeter is that he has done so unbeaten this year. The win itself on the day was courtesy of a hard fought narrow win over the Glasgow-based Tir Conaill Harps in Duddingston.
The game was a tight and often cagey affair with both teams giving nothing short of full commitment and heart throughout the sixty minutes of play. There were early signs of nerves on both sides early on with some handling errors and wides becoming somewhat commonplace. Nevertheless, it was to be Connolly’s who drew first blood with an Alan Ward point after six minutes.
Harps responded to this with a score of their own when Daniel Gallagher’s powerful drive made its way over the bar. The visiting side were perhaps unfortunate not to have taken the lead at this point in the game when Gallagher’s shot was touched onto the crossbar by stand-in goalkeeper Niall Considine. Darragh McBrearty also came close but saw his shot go wide and thankfully for Connolly’s, they were able to pounce on this when Brian McAteer’s free saw the lead restored.
There were indications at this stage of the game that it was indeed going to become a tight contest as scoring attempts were few and far between compared to previous games this season. Keeping the contest alive though was Harps’ full-forward Derrick McGrath when he levelled things up with a score. Connolly’s were not to be thwarted by this though and continued to carry a threat to their opposition and their efforts were to be rewarded as the first half progressed.
Adrian O’Neill gave Connolly’s the lead again after some good work by Ronan McGurk and a high dipping shot from Alan Ward that sailed over the bar gave Connolly’s just that little bit of breathing space that they needed. The half-time whistle blew soon after this with a score of 0-04 to 0-02 in favour of Connolly’s who were halfway there to retaining that league title.
O’Gara made no immediate changes in personnel at the break although there was a few adjustments regarding player positions on the field. For their part, Harps lost the services of McGrath due to injury and this saw Séan Fitzpatrick make his way into the game.
The second half commenced with an early score from a Daniel Gallagher free which closed the gap to just one point. Connolly’s though showed superb resolution after this with some superb defending which was a huge necessity at this crucial stage of the game and a brilliantly taken and important score by Tony Gallagher restored that two point lead for the home side.
Harps knocked on the door again with a score which Connolly’s responded to excellently with three scores of their own from McAteer and then a double from Ward. The second of which from Ward was a superbly taken point from distance. Refusing to let the game slip away from though, Harps answered back with two scores from Derry O’Connor and Michael Doherty making it a two point game going into the last ten minutes with a score of eight points to six.
Tir Conaill Harps pushed for a goal that would have turned the game on its head had they got it but a strong defensive approach from Connolly’s kept them at bay when the pressure was on. O’Gara introduced his fellow county-man, Liam McGinley under the verbal instruction that a score was needed. McGinley certainly let nobody down when he did just that with a well-taken score. This giving Connolly’s a three point lead as the game drew closer to its end.
McGinley was perhaps unlucky not to have had another score three minutes later. His shot looked as though as if it had gone over the bar and even the flag was even raised by the umpire at hand only for the referee to over-rule the decision. Daniel Gallagher’s stoppage time free reduced the deficit to two and the whistle was blown for full-time shortly after signalling that the league title was staying put.
Dunedin Connolly’s captain Ronan McGurk hoisted the trophy aloft for the Edinburgh based club and it was time for the congratulations and applauses to be offered in recognition of the team’s achievement. So with the league title staying in the Scottish capital, it will soon be time to put the focus on the all-important matters of the British Championship. For now though, the moment belongs to Connolly’s.
Dunedin Connolly’s: Niall Considine; Ruari Kirk, John Dolan, Ronan McGurk; Joe Crean, Mark Whelan, Peter Dillon; Robbie Howe, Dermott O’Loughlin (Pat Lynch); Tony Gallagher (0-1), Daniel Loftus, Brian McAteer (0-2); Michael Cochrane (Liam McGinley 0-1), Alan Ward (0-4), Adrian O’Neill (0-1).
Tir Conaill Harps: Anton MacLean; Paul Doohan, Mark Doyle, Donagh Hickey; Dom Roarty, Joe Roche, Michael Doherty (0-1); Damian Shannon, Donagh McBrearty; Darragh Doherty, Daniel Gallagher (0-3), Paddy Brady; Darren McManus, Derry O’Connor (0-1), Derrick McGrath (0-1) (Séan Fitzpatrick 0-1).
By Jonathan Foley
Dunedin Connolly’s PRO
SCOTLAND GAA LEAGUE FINAL 2012
DUNEDIN CONNOLLYS VS TIR CONAIL HARPS
SATURDAY 19TH MAY 2012 @ 1PM
VENUE - DUDDINGSTON, EDINBURGH
Connolly’s Book League Final Spot
Scottish County League
Dunedin Connolly’s 1-18 Sands MacSwiney’s 1-02
Cormac O’Gara’s first season in charge of Dunedin Connolly’s has seen his team book a place in the Scottish County League final after sweeping Sands MacSwiney’s aside on Wednesday night. The club will be looking to win the league for the forth season in a row and for a seventh time in our entirety.
The result against Sands may look like a most relaxing result where only a percentage of a performance was needed to get the two points on offer, but in truth, that was not always the case. The win required a constant barrage of pressure against an often stubborn and physical defensive setup from the Coatbridge based club.
Connolly’s started well with an early score from Tony Gallagher and that seemed to create a feeling that the floodgates would open early on for the home side. That wasn’t necessarily the case though when they failed to capitalise on a pair of goal chances just minutes later. That frustrating factor was put aside quickly though with points from Daniel Loftus and Liam McGinley.
The home-side however began to show signs of self-annoyance again though after a series of wides showed that there was perhaps a sense of frustration kicking in. Amid that situation, there was a score from Ward as well as a lovely dipping shot from Loftus that found its way between the posts.
Yet with a noticeable desire amongst the forwards, there was a brief moment of frustration once again when Ward failed to convert from the penalty spot and saw the rebound shot make its way wide of the goal-frame. The Roscommon man needn’t have worried for long though. Soon after, he added to his points tally with a beautiful angled-shot before Gallagher added another. Frank Molloy then opened his account just on the half-time whistle.
The interval period saw that Connolly’s held a commanding 0-09 to 0-00 lead but there still was that feeling that some hard work coupled with an element of more clinical finishing was still needed of themselves. That mentality was put into practice, effect of immediately, with two quick points from Loftus at the start of the second half.
Sands did have a consolation-like response although a very noticeable one when they hit back with a goal and a point in quick succession. Gallagher and Loftus kept the visitors at bay with another brace of scores before two from Ward killed off any remote threat the opposing side might have been aspiring to carry out. The second of these two Ward points deriving from a quickly-thought interchange of passing with John Fee from the 45 metre line.
O’Gara began to utilise his resources by implementing his substitutes and this decision began to pay dividends soon after. After Connolly’s notched up another two scores, the memories of all those goal chances they hadn’t capitalised on were banished when newly introduced Martin Finn rattled the net with a superb finish.
Sands did reply with a lovely point of their own but the final say was with Connolly’s when Padraig Sheerin epitomised calmness and confidence as he slotted over the bar. The game ended shortly after which confirmed our club’s berth in the League Final yet again. That game will take place at the on the Saturday 19 May against Tir Chonaill Harps in Edinburgh with a throw-in time of 1pm.
So for Dunedin Connolly’s, the men’s team have qualified for the final unbeaten as they continue to seek that forth domestic honour in succession. After this win though, there was no time to dwell on it. The team are immediately back to training tomorrow night (Thursday) before embarking on an away trip to Newcastle on Saturday for a challenge game.
Dunedin Connolly’s: Ronan Fahy; Neil McAuliffe, Damien Holahan, Shane Walsh; Joe Crean, Johnny McGill, Ronan McGurk (Fiachra Heavey); John Fee, Dermott O’Loughlin; Tony Gallagher (0-3) (Padraig Sheerin 0-1), Daniel Loftus (0-6), Brian McAteer (John Monaghan); Frank Molloy (0-2) (Martin Finn 1-0), Alan Ward (0-4), Liam McGinley (0-2) (Michael Cochrane)
Referee: Séan Gavaghan
Man of the Match: Alan Ward
By Jonathan Foley
PRO Dunedin Connolly’s
Dunedin Connollys take on Sands MacSwineys on Wednesday evening the 2nd of May in the Scottish League. Throw in will be at 7:30pm at our Pitch at Duddingston Road West
A win for Connollys will put the them into the league final on the 20th of May and no doubt manager Cormac O’Gara will be looking for the team to continue in their progress and put in a good performance on Wednesday night.
With the Championship due to kick off on the 24th of May with a difficult away trip to Glasgow Gaels he will be looking for signs of improvement from the last few games.
Our Men's team kept alive their chances of reaching this years League Final with 2 good away results against Tir Conail Harps and Dundee Dalriada
On Saturday the 14th of April the Men's Team travelled to Glasgow to take on Tir Conail Harps. It was a hard fought game and the lads managed to come away with a good draw. Final Score Tir Conail Harps 2-06 Vs Dunedin Connollys 1-09
Match Report to follow
On Saturday the 21st of April the Men's team travelled to Aberdeen to play Dundee Dalriada. The lads put in a marvelous display and came away with a well deserved Victory. Final Score Dundee Dalraida 0-07 Vs Dunedin Connollys 3-12
See Match Report Below
The final league match is against Sands MacSwineys on Wednesday the 3rd of May at our Home Pitch at Duddingston. Victory in this match should guarantee a place in the league final.
Connolly’s win well in Aberdeen
Scottish County League
Dundee Dalraida 0-07 Dunedin Connolly’s 3-12
Dunedin Connolly’s put aside the previous game’s disappointing draw against Tir Chonaill Harps with a resounding win in Aberdeen over their latest counterparts from Dundee on Saturday evening.
Although the scoreline suggests a landslide victory for Cormac O’Gara’s men, it was really all down to a polished second half performance and the taking of goal chances when they arose - and taking them well.
On a wet and slippery playing surface, both teams showed signs early on that they were perhaps having a little difficulty with the conditions as passing and catching errors became somewhat commonplace. A few early heavy challenges also set the momentum going. Nevertheless, it was Connolly’s who drew first blood with two early points from Frank Molloy.
Whilst that might have settled our Edinburgh based club, they were given a rude awakening when Dundee staged a quick turnaround of events and by the twelfth minute of the game, it was they who led by a score of 0-4 to 0-02. With a gap of two points being present, it seemed the next score would be a crucial one but thankfully, it went the way of Connolly’s when Daniel Loftus pointed well after an eye-catching break by the visitors.
The tie then began to turn in Connolly’s favour with two goals in relatively quick succession. The first coming from John Monaghan after he was well assisted by Larry Bergin and a cool soccer style finish by Gavin Dempsey meant that Connolly’s had turned a two point deficit into a five point advantage in a matter of minutes.
Dundee did respond with a score of their own but that five point lead was restored by Loftus shortly after. Molloy then furthered the lead with a peach of a score from distance and after Dundee knocked on the door again with another point, it was quickly cancelled out by Tony Gallagher after receiving a well-executed pass from Monaghan.
That ended the first half with Connolly’s leading by a score of 2-06 to 0-06; verifying the importance of the goal chances they pounced upon.
The second half in truth belonged to Connolly’s as they began to seal their authority on the game. Their passing became much more fluent than the opening stages and there seemed to be an aura of confidence about their gameplay as a whole from here on in. Dundee may have got the opening score of the first half but that was to be their seventh and last of the evening.
Gallagher may have been disappointed with a missed free moments earlier but he was brought a reprieve with a score soon after. Newly introduced substitute Niall Considine rose above his marker well to punch in a goal from close range after a good delivery from Loftus and a much better taken free from Gallagher found its way over the bar which meant that Connolly’s led by 3-08 to 0-07 going into the last ten minutes.
Dempsey then added to his first half goal with a point and then there was a tale a missed goal chances. Dundee struck the crossbar just minutes before Molloy put his attempt wide of the mark. It certainly didn’t seem to phase the Mayo man as he quickly hit two lovely scores soon after.
Just as in the first half, Gallagher found himself in plenty of space which allowed him to score confidently and end the half’s scoring and indeed in this case the game’s scoring as a whole. Connolly’s running out 3-12 to 0-07 winners.
So for Dunedin Connolly's, it's back to winning ways and they now hold a consolidating position at the top of the league going into their fourth game. A sound and resolute back-line performance - notably from Paul Kennedy - and a fine flourish of attacking football sees this club now hold a position in the league table that they will aspire to maintain and further.
Ronan Fahy; Damien Hoalahan, Paul Kennedy, Pat Lynch; Joe Crean, Ronan McGurk, Neil McAullife, John Fee, Robbie Howe; Gavin Dempsey (1-1), Tony Gallagher (0-4), John Monaghan (1-0)(Padhraig Sheerin); Daniel Loftus (0-2) (Stephen Kerr), Frank Molloy (0-5), Larry Bergin (Niall Considine 1-0)
Man of the Match: Paul Kennedy
By Jonathan Foley
PRO Dunedin Connolly's.
Dunedin Connollys Men's Team take on Tir Conaill Harps in the Scottish League on Saturday evening the 14th of April in Glasgow.
The address of the pitch in Glasgow is - Lochinch Recreation Grounds, Pollock Park, Glasgow, G41 4SN
Throw in is at 5pm
Dunedin Connollys Ladies Team take on Stirling Uni in a friendly match on Sunday the 15th of April in Stirling.
The match will throw in at 10am.
Dunedin Connolly's 2-20 Glasgow Gaels 0-07
Cormac O'Gara's first competitive game as the new manager of Dunedin Connolly's ended successfully with a resounding win over Glasgow Gaels on Saturday evening. A well-disciplined performance and some fine attacking play in particular was perhaps the main reason behind the victory that sees the Connolly's men earn their first points of the season.
Shortly before the throw-in, the news came through that due to a shortage of players in the Gaels line-up, the game was going to have to be contested as a 13-a-side. This forced O'Gara's hand in having to withdraw two players at the last minute. Nevertheless, Connolly's still went about their business as usual and this was evidenced by the blistering start they had.
It was to be Joe Crean who would start the rout and this was quickly followed by scores from Liam McGinley and Tony Gallagher. In the eleventh minute, Connolly's added further to their score with a goal from Alan Ward. This derived from some fine defending and a superbly orchestrated counter attack which possessed a brilliant flow of sharp passing.
Further scores were added by Crean and Neil Quinn shortly before Ward got his second goal of the evening. Yet despite the comfortable lead that Connolly's had established for themselves, there was no sign of a let up as they continued to carry the threat to the opposition. A brace of points from Ronan McGurk and another apiece for Quinn and McGinley meant that there was a fifteen point lead before Glasgow got their first score.
A well-executed 45 from Ward and a free from McGinley saw the sides break for the half-time interval with a score of 2-11 to 0-01. The manager called for more of the same for the second-half as he began to reshuffle the pack with the introduction of Larry Bergin. The first of what would be five changes in total.
The clinical side of Connolly's finishing came to fruition again with two quick scores from Ward, another from McGinley as well as a fisted and first score of the evening from Robbie Howe. Perhaps knowing the game was over as a contest, Glasgow Gaels did play with a shade more confidence in attack and they were rewarded with two scores of their own.
Frank Molloy then got in on the scoring act with two points, one either side of well-taken score from Crean again. There was another pair of scores from the visitors shortly before Larry Bergin restored the twenty point lead for the home side. There was to be concerns for Paul Kennedy though who had to be withdrawn after picking up an unfortunate head injury.
To their credit, the Glasgow-based club kept their depleted spirits up with two late points and were unlucky not to have got a goal for themselves after hitting the crossbar twice in quick succession during a hectic scramble in the Connolly's defence. Regardless, it was to be Connolly's who would have the final say when McGinley calmly slotted over the bar after being well assisted by Damien Holahan.
A return of 2-20 certainly seemed to satisfy O'Gara although he felt it was worth reminding the players that there is still room for improvement before the next game. That game in question is scheduled to be an away game against Tir Conaill Harps in a fortnight's time. Until then, it's back to the training regime and maybe the sprints up Arthur's Seat will seem more appealing now on the back of this superb win for Dunedin Connolly's.
By Jonathan Foley
Dunedin Connolly's PRO
Dunedin Connolly's: Ronan Fahy; Paul Kennedy (Damien Holahan), Pat Lynch; Séamus Humphries, (Gary Britton) Ronan McGurk (0-2), Joe Crean (0-3); Frank Molloy (0-1), John Fee (John Monaghan), Robbie Howe (0-1), Tony Gallagher (0-2) (Larry Bergin 0-1), Liam McGinley (0-5); Alan Ward (2-3) (Niall Considine), Neil Quinn (0-2).
Referee: Sean Gavaghan
SUCCESSFUL NIGHT AT THE ANNUAL AWARDS
The club members held their annual awards night for 2012 on Saturday 10 March at the city’s Hudson Hotel. Suffice to say, the evening was considered a successful one which was brilliantly attended and supported by all involved. An enjoyable night of music and craic was had and of course, there was time to have a number of specific achievements recognised on the evening for both the Men’s and Ladies teams.
Player of the Year awards were picked up by Sue O’Sullivan and Ronan McGurk with the Most Improved Player awards going to Maire Daly and Larry Bergin. The accolades of Best Newcomer went to Aisling Kavanagh and Damien Holahan. Many deserving congratulations going to them and of course to the winners of the recent Thursday 5-a-side competition who were Mark Whelan, Martin Finn, Brian Barron, Mike Nash and Jason O’Sullivan.
Amid the evening’s entertainment, there was also a time for remembrance which was graciously orchestrated by Ronan McGurk. When collecting his award for Player of the Year, he in a most noble fashion, encouraged a moment’s applause for Peter Buckley. Peter sadly passed away earlier this year whilst visiting Peru and the departed had been a part of 2009 panel of Dunedin Connolly’s who won the 2009 British Championship.
The next annual awards night will of course be a special one as it will mark the celebration of the club’s 25th anniversary. Until then, the focus will be on more current matters at hand. As was announced in the speeches by Club chairman, Peter Dillon, the club are still making strides towards not only Scottish or British success but by also furthering that aspiration with the target of gaining success against Irish-based clubs.
Such plans are being implemented with immediate effect as the week following the awards night saw Cormac O’Gara commence his first week of training as the newly appointed manager of the Men’s team whilst Alan Ward continues on with his responsibilities with the Ladies team. Upcoming fixtures and training schedules have been mailed out so here’s to the start of a good year for Dunedin Connolly’s.
See Photos in our Photos Section
PRO Dunedin Connolly’s
DUNEDIN CONNOLLY’S LADIES BLITZ SUCCESS
There were joyous scenes at The Meadows on Saturday last as the ladies of Dunedin Connolly’s emerged victorious from the Edinburgh Ladies Invitational Blitz.
The final itself was a superbly contested game which saw our ladies earn a win that although was late in coming, was still thoroughly deserved on reflection of that game itself and in the competition in an overall sense. And with that, many congratulations go out to them and of course to Alan Ward.
On the day, the competing teams were Queen Margaret’s University, Stirling, Heriot-Watt and of course our own Dunedin Connolly’s. All four comprised in a group whereby every team played each other once with the top two in the progressing to the final.
Dunedin set out their intentions for the tournament ahead with an opening game win over QMU. The following game saw Heriot Watt get their points on the board after beating Stirling; meaning that group’s early front runners were Dunedin and Heriot-Watt. They were joint top with two points a piece in their armour.
In need of a win to keep their hopes of a place in the final alive, QMU responded superbly to their opening game setback by beating Heriot Watt. With three teams in the group now on two points each, Dunedin knew that a win in their game-in-hand would put some daylight between them and the rest and they did just that by beating Stirling.
Complacency did not seem to enter the mindset of the Dunedin ladies as they entered their third game. Although pretty much assured of a place in the final, they still kept their focus by beating Heriot-Watt. This bringing the ladies into the final with maximum points and they were to be joined there by QMU who beat Stirling in Game 6.
The final itself was a gripping affair between the ladies of Dunedin Connolly’s and Queen Margaret’s University. It would culminate in a 3-05 to 1-03 win for Dunedin and that score-line was greatly aided by a dominant first half showing from the eventual winners.
They were made to work a lot harder for the win in the second half though and perhaps would might have been forgiven for thinking that QMU could still snatch the win away. With Dunedin leading by a slender two points, they were troubled by a strong defensive performance from QMU. They needn’t have worried come the final ten minutes when a brace of goals for Dunedin saw them run out winners with a score 3-05 to 1-03.
Thanks are extended to all four teams who competed, especially to Stirling who made the journey across. Alan Ward expressed his delight at seeing so many competitive games for ladies football and hopes that this will continue in the future. The Roscommon man was jointly enthusiastic about that and of course with his own team’s success on the day.
DC Ladies squad: Sarah O'Connell, Aisling Kavanagh, Mary O'Riordan, Maire Daly, Avril Regan, Shauna McWilliams, Caoilfhionn Deeney, Sue O'Sullivan, Helen Keenan, Niamh McGuiness, Claire Hagan, Louise Bannon, Sue Dillon, Barbara O'Loughlin, Kiera Byrne, Josee Pimbert, Veronica Walls, Leah Cunningham.
DUNEDIN CONOLLY’S WELL RESPRESENTED IN EUROPE
Our very own Dunedin Connolly’s Men’s team gave a splendid account of themselves and the club when they reached the final of the Den Haag Invitational tournament that took place earlier this month. Although the final game itself against Den Haag’s first team saw the opposition win well, the story of the lads venture to the final certainly did well for the club.
The opening game was also played against the team that Connolly’s would go on to face in the final. On this occasion, the hosting team of Den Haag ran out 1-08 to 0-06 winners although to the credit of the Connolly’s lads, the heads did not drop for the second game.
That opening defeat was put to the back burner as the team recovered in brilliant fighting fashion by carrying out a well-fought win against Amsterdam. A single point win was enough to get the points on the board courtesy of a 0-10 to 1-06 victory. Connolly’s did receive a taste of their own medicine though when they then suffered to the hands of a defeat brought about by a solitary point. This time against Belgium.
It appeared to be mission impossible for Connolly’s. The league table stated that they only way they could hope to progress to the competition’s final was by not only winning the fixture against Den Haag’s seconds, but by doing so with an 18 point margin.
In true Rocky Balboa style, the lads led by 17 in the closing stages and a last-gasp fisted point by Damien Holahan secured the place in the final – mission impossible? Mission accomplished!
The final itself may not have gone to plan against the Den Haag’s first team who ran out 3-08 to 0-03 winners. Nonetheless, the boys had represented themselves and the club superbly. On the day, there was notable performances from Joe Crean, Larry Bergin and Ronan McGurk. The latter of the three names mentioned in particular as he went on to win the Player of the Tournament award.
PRO Dunedin Connolly’s
Mens Team Visit Set to Den Haag
On the 3rd Of March Our Mens team will visit Den Haag in the Netherlands to take part in an invitational tournatment hosted by the GAA Club based in Den Haag.
15 lads will make the Journey to take part in the 11 a side tournament and it promises to be a great weekend of fun.
Ladies team Taught A Lesson by Students
Dunedin Connolly’s Ladies 0-01
Queen Margaret University 2-18
By Jonathan Foley at Portobello
The ladies of Dunedin Connolly’s were given a lesson in score-taking by Queen Margaret University during Sunday afternoon’s pre-season challenge game in Portobello.
Regardless of the deficit, the game itself was still contested throughout in an amicable and disciplined manner as well as being unique in a way. This owing to the fact that although Shauna McWilliams lined out in the Connolly’s Midfield, she was simultaneously operating as a coach for QMU. This all on the same weekend as the County Tyrone native’s 25th birthday as well.
Hindsight shows it was always going to be an uphill task for Alan Ward’s ladies and the Roscommon man was forced to have to squeeze square pegs into round holes on the day. With no fixed goalkeeper, a number of changes in personnel and the aforementioned McWilliams suffering a brief but nonetheless worrying respiratory problem in the first half, it was more a case of gelling the team during the season’s infancy than anything else.
Going by the game’s final score, it will be no great surprise to know that it was the visiting students who had the much more enjoyable start. They exemplified clinical finishing perfectly by consistently pouncing on any loose balls and sending them over the bar. In addition, the tempo that they maintained was too much for Connolly’s to bear at times. By the time the half-time whistle blown, Queen Margaret’s held a strong lead of 1-09 to no score.
Following the interval, the concession of scores might not have eased off too much on Connolly’s but the nervousness that plagued them a bit in the first half seemed to loosen its grip on them a bit more as time went on. Although the improvements in their general play did not do much to affect the proverbial Alamo from the visitors, there was some aspects of the second half performance that deserve to be credited.
The most noticeable of these developments was their improved passing game. They had created their own undoing so many times in the first half with misplaced passes and handling errors but there was a notable change of this trend in the second half. Possession was maintained under-pressure from challenges and was also distributed with a variation of long and short passing in a much better way which in turn greatly complimented the support-style approach to their attack.
Such endeavours were rewarded when Lydia Fowley from Donegal, pointed on her debut for her new side midway through the second half. That had cut the deficit to 17 at the time but the unwillingness of QMU to let their tempo drop finished the game off soon after. They remained as clinical and as efficient in scoring as they had done all throughout the game and a late flourish of scores was enough to confirm their positions as comfortable winners on the day.
“Overall, there’s a feeling of a disappointment. We don’t get the opportunity to play many games so when we do I expect to see the girls make the most of the opportunity. We didn’t show enough commitment, gave the ball away a lot which led to about half of their scores and we just didn’t play the way we can or have done in our league matches before Christmas. Although I did expect Margaret’s to be fitter and hungrier with their British Championships coming” told Ward.
“Having said that, this was only a friendly and we had a lot of new faces in the team as well as some girls who had not played for a while. In a way, it was a good opportunity for them to get to know one another and playing together. We also are hoping to have some new players with us soon. We’ll just have to work a bit harder in training with our fitness I guess,” he concluded.
Next up for the ladies of Dunedin Connolly’s is a proposed game against Queen Margaret’s University again this weekend although that is yet to be confirmed as a fixture. They will also partake in a Blitz that is scheduled for Saturday 10 March. Sunday’s defeat might have been a heavy one yet it is hoped to serve as a stepping stone that Alan Ward and his ladies will hope to build from soon.
Dunedin Connolly’s Ladies: Mary Foley; Erin Scott, Elaine Cullinane, Aishling Kavanagh; Helen Keenan, Sinéad Loftus, Shauna McWilliams; Sue Sullivan, Lydia Fowley (0-01); Mairin Stack, Linda Julian, Barbara O’Loughlin, Suzanne Whooley. Mary O’Riordan.
Dunedin Connolly’s Committee Devise Plans for the 2012 Campaign.
By Jonathan Foley
The 2012 committee members met on Friday night last to set out their intentions for the more administrative matters at hand for the season that is soon to be upon us. Among the matters arising were matters concerning both the Men’s and Ladies teams, website and underage development as well as the implementation of a schedule for forthcoming meetings.
Starting with the Men’s team, under the new managerial reigns of Cormac O’Gara, it was agreed that his role will officially commence with the players on Tuesday 13 March. This date will start a four week programme of gym-based training before moving on to a combined schedule of gym and outdoor training.
At present, the club has confirmed that 18 members will travel to Den Haag in Holland for the 11-a- side tournament and there will be training sessions on both the 18th and 25th of this month as part of the preparations for the event. Added to that, a fixture list will also be issued to all members once they have been ratified by the powers that be at an upcoming meeting in Glasgow next week.
Training for the Ladies continues every Wednesday as normal with a 7:30pm start-time. Alan Ward expressed his satisfaction at the numbers attending so far but also requested for some of those involved in last year’s team to return as soon as possible, Queen Margaret’s, Stirling and Herriot-Watt Universities have been invited to take part in the Blitz that is planned for Saturday 10 March here in
Edinburgh. The latter two are yet to respond but any news there will be sent out to those in good time.
Matters over possible modifications to the current club website were discussed and a number of changes were agreed upon. Finbarr O’Leary has offered to put these proposed changes into action if and when he can whilst Niall Considine suggested a new internet programme whereby a wider number of persons could access and update the site; increasing accessibility for those less familiar
with what’s known colloquially nowadays as ‘computer speak. It was also decided that a meeting regarding issues of underage developments as soon as possible. News there to follow in due course.
The next committee meeting will take place on 24 February which still start a course of committee meetings taking place every six weeks from then on. In addition, whole club meetings taking place at every second meeting. In other words, the next committee meeting after the aforementioned will take place on 6 April followed by a whole club meeting six weeks from this on 18 May. The dates are scheduled as follows:
24/02: Committee Meeting
06/04: Committee Meeting
18/05: Club/Committee Meeting
29/06: Committee Meeting
10/08: Club/Committee Meeting
21/09: Committee Meeting
02/11: Club/Committee Meeting
14/12: Annual General Meeting
The reasoning behind the AGM taking place earlier than usual was taken owing to the fact that an early start is ideal with preparations needing to be made in earnest for the club’s 25th anniversary occurring in 2013. Suggestions have since been made as how to mark this landmark occasion in the club’s history which will be discussed and possibly debated(!) in the year ahead that is to come.
Big Turn Out for Annual General Meeting in Irish Consulate
Dunedin Connolly’s GFC held their AGM for 2012 in the Irish Consulate building, situated in Edinburgh’s Randolph Crescent, and possessed a most respectable attendance figure on Friday night last. Matters arising on the agenda included the reports from last year’s committee regarding a review of 2011 as well as the appointment of managers and a new committee itself for the year ahead.
Starting with the review of 2011, the Chairman’s and Secretary’s reports read that they were pleased with the progress that club has made again and encouraged the recruitment of new members to continue. The Treasure’s report stated that the club made a profit of £773.35 in 2011 and the Underage report showed that great strides are being made in local primary schools with the running of a number of coaching programmes in the club’s bid to establish a stable and more permanent youth setup.
Moving on from that, the nominations were put forward for positions within this year’s senior committee. Starting with the appointment of Chairman, Peter Dillon will hold the position again this year as will Dermott O Loughlin as Secretary and Alan Ward as Treasurer. The new PRO position was taken up by Jonathan Foley with Mary O Riordan filling the role as Ladies Secretary and Niall Considine being confirmed as Underage Development Officer.
The instalments to the new senior committee were accepted and supported by all present and that same positive approach was prevalent again when it came to the appointment of the new ladies and men’s first team managers. The club Treasurer Alan Ward will continue on as manager of the ladies team and Cormac O’Gara was welcomed in as the new manager of the men’s team. He takes over the reigns from Niall Considine who vacated the role so as to focus his attention more so on his commitment to youth development.
In terms of the football itself, the club will continue to compete in the 5-a-sides on Thursday nights at 9pm at a cost of £5.50 for each player participating. This will continue until Thursday 8 March before Cormac officially starts his managerial duties with training commencing at The Meadows a week later. The club will also be sending a team to compete in an 11-a-side tournament in The Hague on the first weekend of March where they will be wished a safe journey and every success.
The ladies team will start back training on the 25th of January in the Meadows at 7:30pm
Dunedin Connollys AGM
Dunedin Connollys AGM - 20th January 2012
Time: 7.30pm, Friday 20th January
Venue: Irish Consulate, 16 Randolph Crescent, EH3 7TT
Scottish Champions Dunedin Connollys GFC will host their AGM on Friday 20th January . The AGM will take place at 7.30pm in the Irish Consulate, 16 Randolph Crescent, EH3 7TT. All club members are asked to attend, while all interested in joining are welcome to come along.
In preparation for the AGM we are looking for nominations/volunteers for the committee. The existing committee members are standing again if elected with the exception of PRO. However all positions are available if you feel you want a shot.
Please contact any committee member if interested.
The committee positions are:
The roles of each of the above officers can be found at the following link:
Please forward any motions for the AGM to a committee member for inclusion on the agenda.