This weekend just past seen the underage teams from Tir Conaill Harps travel down to London to compete in the All Britain Championships. Once again a great weekend was had by all. That ABC’s is a great opportunity for our youth teams to compete against the best that British GAA has to offer and as always Tir Conaill Harps did themselves and the club proud and can head home with their heads held high. From a clubs perspective it’s a privilege and honour to watch these youngsters go from strength to strength.
Over the three day event we had teams from U-9’s all the way to U-17’s competing.
Out U9’s where due to kick off the competition on the Friday. Unfortunately due to adverse weather conditions, the decision was taken by the organisers on the Thursday to cancel all opening day events. This was sorely disappointing, but regardless everyone still travelled down to London in order to help cheer and support the other Tir Conaill Harps teams competing. A big thank you must go to Conor Murphy who did manage to arrange some matches against English teams for our U9’s team, allowing them to see some action. The players where so grateful for the opportunity to get a run out.
The U11’s where pitted against some strong opposition in their group, but they played some great football and held their own. In their first match the game ended a draw with St Finbarrs from Coventry. They followed this up with a great win against St Joseph’s from Hertfordshire and then produced again on the show piece pitch with a big crowd watching as the triumphed over John Mitchell’s from Birmingham. Unfortunately they lost their last game by a solitary goal, but it was a great day for our U11’s team who continue to grow in strength.
The U13’s boys are another team going continually improving. They faced some tough oposition, but played some fantastic football to emerge from the group and progress to the quarter final. They went onto win this game but unfortunately lost in the semi final. It was a great effort from the boys, and this experience will only stand them in good stead for the future.
With the U14 girls they to had a hard group from which to progress from but once again they put on some wonderful displays of football and managed to advance to the quarter finals. Unfortunately for the girls they where defeated in this knock out game but if was a fantastic effort from all the girls.
Our final team competing at the ABC’s was our U17 boys. They managed to progress from the group and win their quarter final tie but lost out in the semi final. These boys have put an unbelievable effort in this past few years and they have stuck by the club and continued to develop. They will soon be in our senior men’s team and we couldn’t be prouder as a club to see them make that step up.
The kids had a great time throughout this weekend of competition and as a club we could not be any prouder of them with the way the played and represented the club. To see the youth section grow in strength and confidence it makes all the hard work put in by everyone so worthwhile. We as a club will endeavour to build on this success to make the teams even stronger going forward.
A huge thank you must go to our club chairman Anton for all his hardwork to make this possible and Christina for taking the lead in organising everything for us all. From trying to arrange travel and accommodation to last minute changes it can be a thankless job at times but the kids and parents had a fantastic time and appreciate everything Christina has done to get this organised.
A big thank you must also go to all the team coaches for once again putting in a surreal effort in preparing the players weekly, It’s great to see the progression in all underage players of all age groups. I know all the parents who were in attendance this weekend were very proud of all the players.
And finally, well done to all the players. From the U9’s through to the U17’s, everyone gave their all and that’s all we could ask of them. We are progressing as a club, and it’s our intention to continue that development and go from strength to strength. Hopefully next year we can take that step forward and bring home some silverware.