TO PUT IT mildly, it was a disappointing year in London hurling. Ask yourself if you can remember one really, really good game in the Senior Hurling Championship. For most of you, the answer will be ‘no’.
Robert Emmetts won the senior title and it just goes to show you how far team spirit and a willingness to take on the big two can go. They seized the moment when Kilburn Gaels and St Gabriel’s were vulnerable and fair play to them for doing so.
Attendances at the Championship games were disappointing again this year, but maybe that’s because so many games were called off, while too many games were being played without umpires or linesmen.
Add to that the fact that the Ryan Cup Final was never played, and how many walkovers were there in The Collins Cup? I hope the fixtures committee took note of my suggestions in my article in The Irish Post back in July.
To reiterate, I think both of these competitions should be completed in June and July. We could play the Ryan Cup quarter-finals and semi-finals on Saturday, June 18 and then the final on Sunday, June 19.
Then repeat the format for the Collins Cup on a weekend in July, perhaps the 16th and 17th. On the day of the finals there could be a barbeque, a couple of good bands and an underage game played at half-time.
We might as well make a weekend of it, otherwise we’ll just watch these competitions slowly die. Then again, football gets all the priorities in Ruislip. Maybe we should form our own hurling board?
I can’t say I’m overly enthusiastic about the recent changes on the county board. New chairperson John Lacey has said his term will be a short one and if we’re going to make any progress in the long run, London GAA needs a young leader, someone like Peter Quinn or Joe McDonagh.
Otherwise, it wouldn’t be a surprise to see Croke Park turning their back on us, because it’s only a matter of time before they get fed up of broken promises with the development - we’re all still waiting on that stand.
It’s a big deal that we have Mayo coming over in 2016 – a day out again for those who visit Ruislip once a year – so let’s hope in 2016 we can finally make some progress.
AMBROSE’S MEN OF THE YEAR
Managers of the Year:
Senior – Kevin McMullan (Robert Emmetts)
Intermediate – Martin Corcoran (St Gabriel’s)
Club of the Year:
Hurlers of the Year:
Tadhg Healy (Robert Emmetts)
Fergus McMahon (Robert Emmetts)
Referee of the Year:
Most popular man in Ruislip:
‘Groundsman’ Stephen O’Malley (Garryowen)