Burren lift 2017 All-Ireland Feile Premier Division 1 Crown
OVER the past 30 years Burren (Co Down), as a GAA club, has achieved many provincial and a couple of All-Ireland titles at senior, U21, minor and U16 level.
A new chapter to this book of success was written when Burren U14’s took the All-Ireland Feile Premier Division 1 crown on June 24 2017.
The Sligo County Board acted as hosts for this competition, an opportunity to show off their fantastic new GAA Centre of Excellence located between Sligo and Strand Hill. The 12 top teams in Ireland were invited to take part in this competition – from Dublin, Skerries Harps and Na Fianna, from Cork, Douglas GAC, from Kerry, Austin Stacks, from Derry, O’Donovan Rossa Magherafelt, from Galway, Corofin and Salthill Knocknacarra, from Kildare, Clane, from Donegal, Four Masters and St Eunan’s with the host county represented by Benbulben Gaels.
Stephen O’Hare and his Burren management team had prepared their group of players meticulously and despite a couple of late significant injuries to Eoin McKernan and joint captain Ryan Magill there was a massive panel of 50 players to work with.
Burren were grouped with Na Fianna and Salthill Knocknacarra, with the top team progressing to the Cup semi-final.
Burren set their stall out early on and their first match was against Na Fianna. After a tight enough first half, Burren handled the windy conditions better closing the game out very strongly. Full time: Burren 3-04 Na Fianna 0-03.
Next up were the Galway champions Salthill Knocknacarra.
Burren were quick out of the traps and eased to a comfortable win. Full time: Burren 5-07 Salthill Knocknacarra 1-04 These emphatic performances earned Burren a cup semi-final against Cork champions Douglas, a team who had not tasted defeat for nearly five years and were favourites to progress at the expense of the Down champions.
Burren, no respecter of reputation, started the semi-final in explosive fashion. A burst of three quick goals put Douglas on the back foot and they struggled to compete in the game thereafter. Full time: Burren 4-04 Douglas 0-05 In the other cup semi-final, Magherafelt played Austin Stacks in what was probably the game of the tournament.
O’Donavan Rossa eventually saw off the Kerry champions after extra time.
Familiar foes, Rossa and this Burren team have played each other many times over the past few years with little between them. Burren knew that they would have to start strongly again and that they certainly did.
Burren reserved some of their best football for the final and easily beat a tired Magherafelt. Even if they had been at their best, Rossa would have been no match for a classy Burren. Full time: Burren 6-06 Magherafelt 0-08 Looking at the scores from the games that Burren played, it could be concluded that scoring 18 goals in the four games was the foundation of their success. To concede only one goal over the course of the four games against high quality opposition was as important.
Solid goalkeeping, dogged defending, relentless support running and ruthlessness in front of goal were key reasons that St Mary’s, Burren are now U14 All Ireland champions.
Burren Feile Panel: Conlin Bradley, Aaron Cole, Cian Cunningham, Ross Cunningham, Shea Devlin, Sean Downey, Odhran Doyle, Matthew Duffy, James Duggan, David Fegan, Dara Fitzpatrick, Karl Fitzpatrick, Jack Flynn, Connla Gaffney, Matthew Giles, Callum Grant, Ryan Higgins, James Kelly, Ronan Kelly , Aaron Lawless, Eoin Loughran, John Magee, Harry Magill, Ryan Magill, Shea McAteer, James McCartan, Patrick McCarthy, Ciaran McDermott, Conor McGivern, Rory McGivern, Ross McGivern, Eoin McKernan, Sean McMahon, Ben McManus, Tom McManus, Tom McShane, Mark McSwiggan, Aaron Murdock, Michael Murdock, Odhran Murdock, Zach Murdock, Liam O’Connor, Thomas O’Hare, Oisin Ruane, Tiarnan Ryan, Shea Stephens, Dean Shevlin, Niall Toner, James Travers, Micheal Ward, Logan Woods.
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