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Stage set for inaugural Michael Cusack Day in Carron

THE significant contribution to Irish culture by the founder of the GAA will be celebrated next Sunday, with the inaugural Michael Cusack Day in Carron. A Shane Gilmore sculpture representing the central role of gaelic games in communities across the island of Ireland will be unveiled, exactly 173 years on from Cusack’s birth in Carron. A tree for each county will also be unveiled, along the Burren Fairy Trail and GAA Trail near the Michael Cusack Cottage, thanks to the support of the TOMAR Trust. Sunday’s event also will feature the launch of Going WeLL, a national wellness experience programme being developed nationally by the GAA to encourage people to take better care of their mental and physical health, and by so doing, to reconnect with their communities. Going WeLL is being rolled out on a pilot outreach basis to a range of communities, schools and FET (Further Education and Training) Centres from the Michael Cusack Centre this winter. It …

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Rural isolation fears over approach of winter in pandemic

RURAL isolation is emerging as a major concern across much of Clare as a direct consequence of the pandemic, with older people particularly affected. The ongoing closure of venues like pubs, as well as restrictions on social gatherings and attendance at sporting events, is said to be cutting off lifelines for many older people, many of whom are continuing to cocoon. “When you hear an older person saying that life doesn’t seem worth living any more, there’s something really wrong there,” said the Inagh native Niall Garvey, who is head of Muintir na Tíre. “I would say that, at the moment, the restrictions on pubs and matches are really big issues,” he said. “But, what I think is one of the biggest things is the fact that people are no longer calling on their neighbours. People are afraid to call in to see each other in the way they would have done before the pandemic.” Mr Garvey noted that during …

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Clare senior hurling championship preview

The first round of the Clare senior hurling championship will feature eight games this weekend. Derrick Lynch previews the action. O’Callaghans Mills v Broadford A mouthwatering East Clare derby with the men from Broadford finally at the promised land of senior hurling. That will carry momentum with it, while the Mills are coming off the back of a disappointing 2019. Form goes out the window in these games, but the greater senior experience of the Mills should see them through. Verdict: O’Callaghan’s Mills Clonlara v Newmarket Two sides who will see this game as one that is there to be won, and two sides who will desperately want to hit the ground running. Clonlara are without John Conlon and his loss will be immense. Newmarket may hold the edge in the physicality stakes, but a greater scoring threat for Clonlara might just see them through. Verdict: Clonlara Crusheen v Ballyea This game provided one of the results of the year …

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Shannon nostalgia as ‘Tones show old matches

SPORTING nostalgia has certainly been popular throughout the pandemic, with All-Ireland finals and World Cup ties being broadcast on various channels. On a very local level, Wolfe Tones have been putting footage of old club games online every Sunday evening and it has proven very popular. Club officer Paul Hogan has led the initiative and said, “With the fact the GAA was gone, we just wanted to add something. Our aim too was to preserve as many Wolfe Tones games as we could. We’ve tried to cover all four bases of ladies’ football, camogie, hurling and Gaelic football. We’re fairly eating through them over the last few weeks. If there’s anyone in the county with old Wolfe Tones games, we’d be delighted to get them up on YouTube.” Many of the games shown have finished with Wolfe Tones hoisting silverware. “It has been mostly finals but the first game was a Munster semi-final against Patrickswell. Because it was on in …

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Newmarket clubs co-operating for charity

FIVE sports clubs in Newmarket-on-Fergus are joining forces in a bid to unite their community and raise funds for charities. Newmarket-on-Fergus GAA, Newmarket Celtic, Newmarket-on-Fergus camogie, Newmarket-on-Fergus ladies’ football and Newmarket-on-Fergus handball have come together and using the slogan ‘Staying apart but coming together’, have launched the Newmarket-on-Fergus 500 Mile Challenge. Over the weekend, individuals will clock up a mile each with the target of hitting 500 miles. Each participant is asked to donate €10 and can do so online through GoFundMe via any of the club’s social media channels. All funds raised are going towards the Newmarket-on-Fergus based South Clare Meals on Wheels, Bunratty Search and Rescue, Newmarket-on-Fergus Men’s Shed, Sláinte an Chláir and Pieta. Mark O’Malley of Newmarket Celtic said, “We’re kind of idle at the moment; all the lads are doing their own training and stuff. With it being so quiet, why not come together and do something for the community? Darren Duggan set up the GoFundMe …

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Hurley and Sliotar

Ennis GAA club launches ‘Townie TV’ online

AN Ennis GAA club have started their own YouTube channel as well as launching a search for their greatest hurling team of all time. With matches on hold due to Covid-19 Éire Óg Inis have set up Townie TV featuring videos of old matches to be viewed online. According to a spokesperson for Éire Óg the YouTube channel has been developed “in a bid to provide alternative methods of getting our match fix in during the current restrictions”. Some videos of old games have been provided by Eddie Lough and converted to digital by Gerry and Oran Cahill. “It’s an arduous process and all efforts are greatly appreciated.” Among the matches featured on the channel are the 1989 junior hurling final against Kilnamona and also the 1990 senior Munster hurling final against Patrickswel. Members of of the club with recordings of games they would like to share on the channel are asked to contact the committee. The club have also …

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GAA mourns passing of Noel Walsh

THE death has occurred of one of the most influential figures in Clare GAA. Among the many achievements of retired Army Colonel Noel Walsh was securing the introduction of the open draw in the Munster Senior Football Championship, paving the way for Clare’s famous title success in 1992. Noel served as a selector with Clare for 20 years and was part of the backroom team in 1992 when they beat Kerry in the Munster final in the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick. He was responsible for getting John Maughan on board as the team coach. Noel also had a love of hurling and during his tenure as chairman of Munster Council, he had the honour of presenting the Munster Hurling Championship trophy in 1995 to Anthony Daly. He won two Clare senior football championship with his native Miltown and served as club secretary and chairman. As a player he also represented Clare and minor and junior level. The 85-year-old was a …

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Sporting boost for Clarecastle school

IT’S all to play for at Clarecastle National School which is set for a boost to its sporting facilities. The school have been granted planning permission for a development which will see the construction of a new hurling wall. The school has also been given the go-ahead for a 2.4 metre high wire mesh fence for its existing soft play area and planned future Astro Turf pitch. The hurling wall will have an overall height of 4 metres and will be 10 metres long, located along the north western boundary of the site which is shared with the adjacent GAA grounds. This will be a dual sided wall, and will also be available for use by patrons of the GAA grounds. In assessing the application, planners with Clare County Council found there would be no adverse impacts on traffic safety and / or free flow of vehicles and pedestrians within the site. No lighting has been proposed for the Astro …

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