Saturday, 23 May 2015

Photos from Collooney handball exhibition match & McGee Cup tournament Saturday 23rd May 2015

Collooney’s historic handball exhibition match

On Saturday May 24th last a packed Collooney handball court witnessed a fantastic handball exhibition match, writes Michael McGee.

Present at the historic event was the Sligo G.A.A Chairman Joe Taffee and Sligo G.A.A. Administrator Eamonn Mc Munn. Also present was Claire Ronan from Irish TV who was on hand to record the event.

The Collooney handball club welcomed World handball champions in Cavan’s Paul Brady and Mayo’s Joe McCann for an historic handball exhibition match. Brady arguably the world’s greatest handball player came to Collooney after having another great season in which he won 4 U.S. Pro Stop Tournaments and an injury picked up in the All-Ireland Senior Doubles final deprived him and doubles partner Michael Finnegan of their 11th doubles titles and a six-in-a-row. The Cavan pairing bounced back 3 weeks ago to win the Irish 40 x 20 doubles trials finals and will be the Irish handball doubles representatives at the World handball championships in Calgary in August. Brady used the Collooney exhibition as training for the U.S. Nationals which take place in Los Angeles in 3 week’s time. 
The Club’s development Chairman Hugh McGarry welcomed everyone to the exhibition match and thanked the committee for organising the event. Ballymote’s Francis McCann was the referee for the clash of the champions. As expected Brady the World champion won the exhibition match by 21-7, 21-7 but was pushed all the way by McCann. The Ballaghaderreen man played the All-Ireland senior hardball singles final the following day only to lose out to eight time champion in Dublin’s Eoin Kennedy.
Both players gave fantastic displays of agility and execution in the art of killing the ball and retrieving. Following the match Chairman Peter Davey presented both players with Galway Crystal. 

Both players were interviewed by Irish TV together with Hugh McGarry and the Club’s PRO Michael McGee. The event is due to be televised in 3 weeks time.
It was a very busy end to the 40 x 20 season for the Collooney handball club having already hosted the Connacht Senior Men’s & Ladies Provincial finals, Irish Junior 40 x 20 Nationals qualifying games & All-Ireland Masters 40 x 20 doubles finals.

In the Club tournament that preceded the exhibition match was the 60 x 30 competition for the Michael & Bernadette Mc Gee Perpetual Cup between Meath Club Crossakiel & Collooney. At the end of a terrific battle Crossakiel took home the title and the inaugural McGee Cup back to the Royal County. The Crossakiel team of Michael McGee, Vinny Farrell, Steven Quinn, Stanley Harte & Eugene O’ Reilly defeated the Collooney team of Aoife McDonagh, Stanley Harte Jnr, Mick McMorrow, Peter Chambers,Peter Chambers & Paddy Walsh by 85-57.

No comments:

Post a Comment