Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Brown Announces retirement from Irish Hockey

Irish captain Patrick Brown announced his retirement from the international hockey today after over nine years of competing at the highest level.

He becomes the third retiree from the men's squad following Jason Black and Andy Barbour's decisions to call time on their career in the wake of the Olympic Qualification tournament in New Zealand.
The Inst player made his international debut on 13th June 1998 against Scotland and has since gone on to be one of Ireland's best ever players, breaking the Irish record for caps with 151, 92 of which were as captain.

He said of his retirement: “I have always been motivated by the desire to play in an Olympic Games and it was very disappointing not to win the qualifying tournament in New Zealand in February. Having taken some time to consider my position, I have decided that the time is right for me to step out of international competition and dedicate more time to other areas of my life.”
Irish coach Dave Passmore, meanwhile was quick to pay tribute to his captain: "He has become a legend of the Irish game and my only regret for him was that he did not compete on the Olympic stage as he, and others so richly deserved.
"I speak on behalf of all the athletes and management team in thanking him for his dedication both as player and leader and wish him well in his future as a husband, solicitor and what ever else the future may bring."

The spate of retirements comes at a natural point in the international calendar, with Ireland not in major competition until 2009's Europeans but it will prove a massive task to replace Brown - one of Ireland's greats.

Masters hockey

The Irish Masters over 40's and over 50's will play in Edinburgh on the weekend of August 29-30, in an annual quadrangular event. The tournament involves matches against Scotland, Wales and England and the team is looking to recruit players from Leinster as previous years have seen travelling teams predominently made up of Ulster players.

However, such luminaries as Liam Canning, Ger Burns, Nigel Kingston and Pete Agnew at 40s' level and Eddie O'Malley and Stuart Walker at 50's, have played for the squads in the recent past.

Ideally, what the team is looking for is players in their early 40's or early 50's that have played hockey to either provincial or international standard. However, this is not a prerquisite, rather a guideline and if you feel your a late developer please feel free to contact Frank Byrne.

This tournament is both highly competitive and demanding and not for the faint hearted. It is, however, an extremely enjoyable weekend playing with and against a high calibre of players.

If you are interested, contact Frank Byrne within the next 2 weeks: email:, Phone: +353 (01) 219 4244, mob: +353 (87)8207078

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

OQT: Ireland 1 Uruguay 0

Ireland laboured to a 1-0 win over bottom of the table Uruguay in their Olympic Qualification campaign. And while they will be pleased to have kept a third clean-sheet in a row and a third successive win, facing into the Italy and Korea match, they will hope to take a few more chances.

The Irish thoroughly dominated the game but only had Nikki Symmons to show for their efforts. Her drag-flick in the 27th minute came from the sides fourth short corner.

It was a frustrating afternoon with Uruguay offering little going forward, resolute in their task of keeping the scoring down after a 10-0 and 4-0 losses at the hands of Korea and Italy respectively.

Ireland continue to top the group on maximum points but have their hardest two matches to follow for the final remaining Olympic spot.

The first is against qualifying favourites Korea on Thursday before a crucial match with Italy on Friday. They will need to win at least one of those to be in with a chance of making the playoff spot for Beijing.

IHA Announces Shortlist for ESB Irish Hockey Awards

The Irish Hockey Association (IHA) has released the 44 nominees for the Irish Hockey Awards to be presented on May 31 at The Ballsbridge Court Hotel, Dublin

Four nominees have been issued for the each of the eleven award categories, ranging from top international players, to coaches, umpires, volunteers and clubs.

Tickets for the event are available at or by telephoning 01 2600028

And the nominees are:

Men’s Senior Player David Hobbs, Mark Gleghorne, Stephen Butler, Paddy Brown
ESB Women’s Senior Player Eimear Cregan, Claire McMahon, Cathy McKean, Shirley McCay
U18 Male Player Brian Doherty, Stuart Loughrey, Peter MacDonnell, Stephen Hunter
ESB U18 Female Player Stephanie Quinn, Amy Stewart, Zara Delany, Chloe Watkins
ESB Coach of The Year Richie Malone, Billy McConnell, Craig Fulton, Victor Shaw
Umpire of The Year Zena Howe, Geoff Conn, Carol Metchette, Tom Goode
Club of The Year Armagh, Pembroke Wanderers, Pegasus, Cork C of I
Emerging Club of The Year Limerick, Clonmel, Renmore, Botanic
ESB Volunteer of The Year Reg Treacy, Mary Walsh, Helen Buckley
Youth Club of The Year Knocknacarra, Limerick, Tullamore, Muckross
Development Coach of The Year Carl Allen, Karen Long Eacrett, Trevor Watkins, Gareth Borland
* Agree with these nominations? Who do you think should have been nominated? Have your say...

Pembroke 2nds claim treble

Pembroke Wanderers men claimed a domestic treble tonight to go with their quadruple last year, only missing out on that feat with the discontinuation of the division 3 top-four competition.

They beat title rivals Corinthian 4-1 to move into an unassailable lead at the top of the league table with just Fingal to play on Thursday night. They add this trophy to the Irish Junior Cup and the Railway Cup, which they won in a Sandymount derby with Railway Union 6-0.

* A full round-up of the men's leagues will be completed after the Leinster Branch AGM, which takes place on Tuesday night.

Sights and sounds from the OQT

To hear Cathy McKean talk about her what her 100th cap means to her, click here or on the image.

Monday, April 28, 2008

OQT: Ireland 2 Canada 0

Ireland were resolute in defence as they withstood a second half onslaught to beat host nation Canada 2-0 in their second Olympic qualifying match.

It sees the girls in green go temporarily top of the six team pool, following yesterday’s win over Malaysia, ahead of Italy on goal difference with Korea yet to play today.

Cathy McKean – celebrating her 100th cap – was given extra cause for jubilation when she opened the scoring in the 10th minute, getting a fantastic deflection on a low Nikki Symmons drag-flick to roof the ball.

Clare Parkhill scored her second in two games with a similar penalty corner switch move to her goal against Malaysia, battering the ball in from the top of the D.

It was a good return of two goals from three first-half corners to put Ireland in the box seat.

Canada had most of the play in the second half but were unable to get past Mary Goode who was in top form. She produced three fine saves while Ireland’s best chance to improve their goal difference came from Eimear Cregan’s reverse stick shot which flew just over.

Ireland now rest for Monday before taking on bottom of the heap, Uruguay.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Fingal hoping for Wild card entry

Fingal's wild card play-off tournament will take place this coming weekend. They play Instonians on Saturday at 2pm and then play Fingal on Sunday at 1.30pm in conjunction with the Club Championships qualification stage in Lisnagarvey.

The key match will see them looking to get a result in the tournament opener against Inst, looking to keep livewires Marks Gleghorne and Irwin at bay. They will have to do so without Andy Quinn who has a broken hand and are waiting on a fitness test on Keith Crawford.

Bandon, whose main threat comes from David Smyth, came third in Munster and have former underage international, Ian Hosford, between the sticks.

A win in the competition will see the side join Leinster's TRR, Pembroke, Glenanne and Monkstown in next year's inaugural All-Ireland league.

Glenanne gain promotion

Glenanne ladies gained promotion back to big time as they deservedly won a dramatic promotion/relegation match with Three Rock Ladies, 3-2 after extra-time.

The Glens were on top for most of the first half but found themsleves behind when TRL scored against the run of play when pusher out Laura Binions knocked in a penalty corner.

But the game was tied up two minutes into the second half when Marie Goulding equalised from a short corner rebound and moved 2-1 ahead soon after.

They racked up a number of corners but could not extend the lead and Three Rock came back strong - Susan Mellon missing a well-worked chance to draw level before making no mistake with a fortuitous chance with just two minutes left.

That forced extra time - the first period was nervy and scoreless, with a corner apiece while the second half saw the crucial goal. Mary Waldron - an Irish international soccer player - got the goal, slotting home from five yards after a right wing cross made its way right across the circle.

OQT: Ireland 3 Malaysia 0

Ireland’s women got their Olympic hockey qualifying campaign off to a solid start as they dominated their encounter with Malaysia, winning 3-0 in Victoria, Canada.

The result was rarely in doubt after Clare Parkhill broke the deadlock in the 22nd minute firing home from Ireland’s fourth penalty corner.
Captain Eimear Cregan doubled the lead before the break with a tap-in after fine work from Jenny McDonough.

And McDonough was again the instigator just four minutes into the second half to warp up a simple win. Ireland were rarely threatened, giving up just one chance all day while they created a number of opportunities of their own, winning the penalty corner count by 7 to nil.
Ireland will next face Canada who lost to Italy 2-1 but their main rivals for the one available Olympic place will be Korea. They began their campaign with a 10-0 demolition of Uruguay.

Afterwards, coach Gene Muller felt it was a solid, if unspectacular start. "Tonight, we were workman like and professional. I was delighted with how many chances we created and I am sure that we will convert more of our chances as we continue through this tournament.
"Our priority for today was to start well and get a win and we did that so I am very pleased."

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Muller upbeat ahead of qualifiers

Ireland begin their Olympic Qualifying Tournament on Saturday night, taking on Malaysia.

And coach Gene Muller is upbeat about the side’s build-up to the tournament “I am very happy with our preparations including the last week in camp out here which has all gone to plan. At this point with the first match just around the corner we are anxious to get the qualifiers under way and off to a good start.”

Ireland played a forty minute training match against Canada yesterday as part of their session which saw them draw one all “the training game went well and the match was very impressive, it was only a forty minute game which saw us pull back from one down to level at one all”.

Looking at the tournament, Muller said “We are taking this one game at a time but we need to get ourselves into a good position early on so we are in contention towards the end of the tournament.

“In the first two games we really want to come out with at least four points, ideally we don’t want to drop more than two points and put ourselves up against a wall, we want to be in contention all the way through.”

World number 14s, Ireland are the second highest ranked side in the group behind Korea and above by Italy (19), host Canada (23), Malaysia (24) and Uruguay (27). The top two from the pool stages go on to play in a final on Sunday 4th May in a winner takes all match to take that final Olympic spot.

Live commentary from the matches and full match reports are available online at

Match Schedule: Victoria Canada; (Local time/Irish time)
April 26 Ireland v Malaysia, 16.30/00.30
April 27 Ireland v Canada, 14.30/22.30
April 29 Ireland v Uruguay, 12.30/20.30
May 1 Ireland v Korea, 12.30/20.30
May 3 Ireland v Italy, 16.30/00.30
May 4 Classification Matches

SQUAD (Age/Caps)
Emma Clarke (22, 45), Eimear Cregan (Capt)(26, 131), Mary Goode (GK)(28, 42), Louisa Healy (GK)(26, 27), Lisa Jacob (20, 23), Jenny McDonough (26, 102), Shirley McCay (19, 40), Cathy McKean (29, 96), Bridget McKeever (25, 105), Hollie Moffett (22, 8), Louisa Moore (23, 11), Ciara O’Brien (V Capt)(28, 144), Julia O’Halloran (19, 31), Clare Parkhill (27, 62), Cliodhna Sargent (20, 23), Alex Speers (22, 35), Emma Stewart (20, 48), Nikki Symmons (25, 93)

Jenny Robinson Cup

In memory of the late Jenny Robinson, 16 predominantly boy's teams from Primary Schools in Leinster took part in an 8-a-side tournament at TRR yesterday played on a round robin basis.

All competitors, many of whom had been coached by Jenny either at Taney NS or YMCA, played with great spirit in a lively atmosphere. It was particularly pleasing to welcome newcomers Castleknock National School to the Primary School section.

The final was a closely contested affair between Delgany NS and Whitechurch NS. Delgany came out on top with goals from Daniel Joyce and Uilliam Blythman with Stuart Ronan replying for Whitechurch.

Jenny's family Philip, David and Sarah presented a beautiful cup to the winners, a great tribute to a special person and it is hoped to make this an annual event.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Women's Promotion/relegation playoff announced

Three Rock ladies will face off against Glenanne in a straight battle to see who takes the final spot in next season's Leinster Senior League. They will play on Sunday at Serpentine Avenue at 4pm.

Irish Hockey Announce New Chief Executive Appointment

The Irish Hockey Association have announced Angus Kirkland as the new Chief Executive of IHA as the search to replace Paul Varian has finally ended.

In the role of CE, Mr Kirkland will be responsible for the implementation of the IHA's 2008-2012 Strategic Plan.

“Angus’ appointment is timely for a number of reasons. Firstly, it follows an extended vacancy of the position of Chief Executive and secondly it coincides with the imminent finalisation of the next phase of our strategic planning. This plan outlines the development of hockey over the next four years.” commented Irish Hockey’s Chairman, John Dennis .

Kirkland joins the Association with a experience in strategic planning, sponsorship and sport's management. In 2002, he completed a Masters in Business Administration majoring in finance, marketing and project management before accruing a further six years experience primarily in the sport ing industry.

In 2005, he was appointed as Chief Operating Officer with Irish Squash of which his primary responsibility was to oversee all aspects associated with the development and growth of squash in Ireland .

His experience with regard to the day to day management of sport which was gained in management positions with both Mount Pleasant LTC and the Harvard Club of Boston and is also familiar with the demands of playing sport at an elite level as from 1991 – 2000 he competed as a professional squash player which involved international travel to compete in major events.

Commenting on his appointment Kirkland said "I am absolutely delighted to accept the post of Chief Executive of Irish Hockey and to be part of an organisation of such stature and reputation. I am looking forward to working with everyone within hockey to continue to grow the games' profile and standing, and the challenge that entails."

Monday, April 21, 2008

Jason Black retires

Cork Harlequins' Jason Black has retired from international hockey after nine years with the senior squad. He made his against Switzerland and went on to win a further 122 caps.

His decision to retire comes in the wake of Ireland missing out on an Olympic spot with the highlights of Black's career include finishing 1st in the European Nations Qualifying Tournament in 2002 in front of a home crowd at UCD and winning Gold at the European Nations Trophy in Rome 2005.

He explained his reasons for retiring, saying “like every other member of the squad my ambition was to qualify for the Olympics. It was bitterly disappointing to lose out on a place in the final due to goal difference but this alone shows how far the teams and Irish hockey aspirations have increased over the last few years.

"We are no longer happy to make up the numbers in tournaments and are now truly in a position to qualify for major sporting events like the Olympics and World Cups.

“With this part of the Irish programme over and no more major tournaments until the European Championships in over a year’s time it is vital for Irish hockey to bleed some of the talented development squad players.
"I would like to thank my wife and family for all their support over the years. My wife particularly has had to put up with me leaving for tournaments including two weeks after she gave birth to our first child and never complained that the responsibility for bringing up our two kids has mainly fallen on her so far. My retirement will now give me a chance to enjoy time with my kids.”

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Under 21 Final: Pembroke 5 Glenanne 0

Pembroke claimed the Avoca Cup for the first time since 2002 with a comfortable 5-0 win. On that day, Glenanne were also the victims and, with Tim Lewis and Alan Sothern in top form, they were no match for the 'Broke after a competitive start.

Sothern opened the scoring 20 minutes in, rounding two short-corner runners to slip the ball home from seven yards. Shane O'Donoghue showed some nice touches down the right wing and Glenanne went close when Richie Shaw almost managed to snap up a rebound but David Harte reacted quickest.

But the second half proved more one-sided. Sothern fired in a reverse, Stu Loughrey deflected home Scott Furlong's pinpoint corss before Lewis was set up by Sothern for the fourth of the day. Sam Spence, also assisted by Sothern, made it 5-0 to complete the scoring.

UCD survive Suttonians playoff

UCD 4 Suttonians 4 (UCD win 4-3 on penalties)

UCD survived by the skin of their teeth to stay in division one on penalty strokes. They trailed Suttonians - who were playing in possibly their biggest match in the club's 17 year history - on three separate occasions before Neil Young eventually netted the all-important stroke.

Chris O'Connor, who arrived from Fingal six weeks ago, got the opener for Sutton before Robbie McFarlane pegged them back for the first time. Goals from Yasir Islam and Mukhtar Ahmed moved them ahead at 2-1 and 3-2 - Young scoring for 2-2 - before UCD got in front for the first time through a Dave Storey drag-flick and Glenn Holmes.

And they held that lead until three minutes from time when a brilliant Ahmed hit at a short-corner sent the game into extra-time.

Chances were rare in the time added on, with just a corner apiece, Holmes going closest but drawing an excellent save from James Murtagh. The students held their nerve to win 4-3 against the Neville Davin Cup winners.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Pembroke v Monkstown: Cup final pics

ISC Final: Monkstown 0 Pembroke Wanderers 3

Pembroke won the Irish Senior Cup for the first time since 2000 with a 3-0 victory at Belfield, preventing Monkstown from causing a third successive shock in this year’s competition.

Indeed, Monkstown faced a Wanderers backlash, who looked in a hurry to erase the memory of their league campaign. They began in dominant fashion and took the lead within three minutes when John McInroy got on the end of a good move to make it 1-0.

The Town looked a little overawed by the occasion in front of a packed out stadium and struggled to make many clear-cut chances even when Colin Kelly was harshly sin-binned. The best fell to Ian Allen who snatched at a reverse side effort when he possibly had the time to wind up for a more powerful shot.

They also had a penalty corner switch in the net but it flew in above the backboard and over Nigel Henderson.

In truth, though, these were only fleeting chances. Pembroke were in the ascendancy for much of the game and always looked as if they had a gear or two in reserve should they need to forge away.

Early in the second half, Ronan Gormley scored a drag-flick to make it 2-0 but found themselves under a modicum of pressure, mainly from the lively Gareth Watkins, when Paddy Conlon was sin-binned.

They held out and sealed the win when Craig Fulton slid home with three minutes remaining after Alan Giles breath-taking run to wrap up a comprehensive win. Tim Lewis took the man of the match title with a dynamic performance at the back while Conlon battled hard all day.

Nigel Henderson picked up the trophy on what was his last ever competitive game after an illustrious career.

Munster Senior Cup: C of I 5 Harlequins 4 (on golden goal)

Cork C of I landed the Munster Senior Cup in an action-packed final against their fierce rivals, Harlequins, at Farmer's Cross. They looked comfortable, going into a 2-0 lead thanks to John Bruton and Paul O'Leary but were pegged back by the break as the game became fractious toward half-time.

Dave Egner and John Hobbs scored the equalising goals before the break in a half where David Lombard was yellow carded twice and Andy Chambers picking up one for CI. And, this trend continued into the second half when Richie Gash was red carded in the 45th minute for violent conduct.
That incident preceded a pair of penalty strokes, Philip Smith netting in the 46th minute before Paul Lombard made it 3-3 from the spot a minute later.

Smith got CI back in front for a third time from play and they looked to be coasting to victory for a short while. But Harlequins' 10 men mounted a late charge and Dan Hobbs got a leveller with a couple of minutes to go and force extra-time.

It lasted barely five minutes, though, as Bruton got his second to seal CI's second title in a week.

Women's divisional Cup finals

Division 7/8 Final: Our Lady's 2 Railway Union 1
Our Lady's added their fine season with the division 7/8 cup final with two excellent goals sealing a 2-1 win. They opened the scoring early on before Railway equalised with a straight shot from a corner. But Our Lady's sealed the win before half-time with their second.

Division 11/12 Final: Avoca 1 YMCA 1 (6-5 on penalty strokes)
Avoca added to their promotion with a cup title in dramatic fashion at Grange Road when Claire Dunwoody netted the winning penalty in the 10th round of strokes. Tanya Chapple saved YM's final stroke in the sudden death series to give them the win and overturn the final standings in division 12.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

ISC Final: Monkstown v Pembroke Wanderers

The Irish Senior Cup takes centre stage this weekend with Monkstown playing Pembroke in the final at Belfield.

The Town have are the big story in this year’s competition and Pembroke’s recent struggles could see the score line being a lot closer than the two sides previous encounters this season, both of which ended 4-1.

Underdog performances against Rovers and Lisnagarvey have given Monkstown the confidence to take on the bigger sides and while they stuttered in the early stages against UCD last week, they soon reverted to type firing in five unanswered goals.

Having said that, Pembroke will, undoubtedly, go into the final as favourites. In recent games, especially against Corinthian and Instonians, they dominated for long periods.

Against Corinthian, they were unable, though, to score the decisive goals to make the game safe and were eventually thankful to a Ronan Gormley save off the line.

The Instonians match was truly bizarre. The Broke were simply breathtaking for 50 minutes, barely letting their Northern opponents into the 25.

If Pembroke can recreate that form then they should have way too much in the tank but, with Fingal, Rovers and Inst making late comebacks, Monkstown’s confidence may be boosted and will know the game will never be over.

Conor Harte is the only injury victim for either side as Pembroke look to add the ISC to last season’s Club Championships while, as I’m sure you’ve heard ad nauseum this week, Monkstown will be hoping to win their first ISC since 1914.

Club Championships Draw

The draw for the Club Championships has been almost finalised. Pool A sees last year’s champions Pembroke line up against Cork C of I, Ulster champion’s Cookstown and either Lisnagarvey and Banbridge.

Leinster league winners Three Rock do battle with last year’s ISC winners Glenanne, Cork Harlequins and Ulster ’s runners up which is between Lisnagarvey and Banbridge.

On the women’s side, which take place on the May 16-18 in Lisnagarvey, Pool A sees Railway Union, Cork Harlequins, Pegasus and Armagh battle it out while pool B lines up Hermes, Loreto, Cork C of I and Ballymoney.

Men’s Club Championships Pool Stages
Lisnagarvey; May 3-5
Saturday 3rd
11.30 A Cookstown v Lisnagarvey or Banbridge
12.30 B Three Rock Rovers v Glenanne
3.00 B Lisnagarvey or Banbridge v Cork Harlequins
4.00 A Pembroke Wanderers v Cork C of I

Sunday 4th
11.00 A Pembroke Wanderers v Cookstown
12.00 B Three Rock Rovers v Cork Harlequins
2.00 A Lisnagarvey or Banbridge v Cork C of I
3.30 B Lisnagarvey or Banbridge v Glenanne

Monday 5th
10.30 A Pembroke Wanderers v Lisnagarvey or Banbridge
11.30 B Glenanne v Cork Harlequins
2.00 A Cookstown v Cork C of I
3.00 B Three Rock Rovers v Lisnagarvey or Banbridge

Women’s Club Championships Pool Stages
May 16-18; Lisnagarvey
Friday 16th May
6.00 A Pegasus Armagh
6.00 B Hermes Loreto
8.00 B Ballymoney Cork C of I
8.00 A Railway Union Cork Harlequins

Saturday 17th
12.30 B Hermes Cork C of I
13.30 A Railway Union Pegasus
15.00 B Loreto Ballymoney
16.00 A Armagh Cork Harlequins

Sunday 18th
11.00 A Armagh Railway Union
12.00 B Cork C of I Loreto
13.00 A Pegasus Cork Harlequins
14.00 B Hermes Ballymoney

Weekend action (apart from the ISC)

Away from the ISC, there’s a wealth of action over the weekend with a few key issues to be decided. In the division ½ playoff, UCD will hope they can avoid becoming just the second division 1 team to lose this fixture against Suttonians.

They open up a triple bill on Sunday at Serpentine Avenue at 3.30pm followed up by the Under 21 Cup final at 5.30pm. Traditionally, this is one of the most exciting finals in the cup calendar and while Pembroke have internationals Tim Lewis and Alan Sothern to call upon, Glenanne, in evidence on Tuesday night, are a well balanced side right the way through their squad.

The Leinster Junior Cup completes the bill at 7.30pm with Clontarf playing YMCA.

In Munster, Cork C of I and Harlequins face off once again for a major trophy on Saturday. They meet at 2pm in Farmer’s Cross on Saturday for the Munster Senior Cup final while UCC A face Bandon B in a promotion/relegation playoff.

In Ulster, the league season comes to an end at Coolnafranky with Lisnagarvey needing a point against newly crowned champions Cookstown to pip Banbridge for the runners up spot.

On the east coast, at McAuley Park, Kilkeel must win against All-Ireland wild card qualifiers, Instonians, to avoid the drop and send Mossley down.

Under 21: Glenanne 5 TRR 2

Glenanne made it through to the Avoca U-21 cup final with a 5-2 win over Three Rock on Tuesday night and will face Pembroke this Sunday.

Three Rock took the lead early on through Ali Haughton. His initial short corner strike was blocked by Clive Kennedy but Haughton fired home the rebound.

Jonathan Kane (pictured) equalised soon after with a sublime effort, weaving his way into the circle from the halfway line before swivelling and striking the ball into the top right hand corner. The Glens then went 2-1 up when captain Richie Shaw dribbled his way along the endline and finished at the near post.
Rovers got back on terms when James Dalrymple knocked home Tim Hill’s cross but just before the break, Glenanne got a vital lead as more good work from Kane found Stephen Callaghan at the back post and to simply tap in.

After the interval, Three Rock laid siege to the hosts goal but apart from a Haughton short corner strike and some wonderful balls from Darling they could not create any clear-cut chances.

The killer goal came with 15 minutes left as Shaw drove forward from sweeper and slipped the ball to Matt Lucas who pushed the ball into the bottom corner. The fifth arrived a minute later when a save from the Stephen West fell straight to Clive Kennedy who hammered the ball into the bottom corner.

With Three Rock now out of the game, Glens missed further chances. Shaw had a reverse stick strike saved, Shane O'Donoghue's effort was well blocked and Callaghan should have added to his tally.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Setanta Cup line-up announced

The Irish men's team face a daunting task if they are to successfully retain their Setanta Sports Trophy crown this summer after the line-ups were announced.

Ireland, who defeated Canada in the last year's final will again face the Canadians along with Great Britain and Pakistan - visiting for the first time since the Whitechurch park pitch opening in the earyl 1990s - when the tournament gets underway in June.
Given that all the visiting nations have qualified for the Olympics and will be stepping up their preparations ahead of Beijing, it is unlikely Dave Passmore's side will have things all their own way this time around.

In the women's event, current Olympic champions Germany will again be on hand to defend their title with Ireland also facing the highly-ranked British and South African sides.

"The ability to attract top quality opposition to this event demonstrates the progress made by our national teams," Passmore said today.

"It is essential our players are exposed to high quality tournament hockey which is so vital in developing players and enabling them to develop the skills required to achieve at the highest level."
Men's teams: Ireland, Great Britain, Pakistan, Canada
Women's teams: South Africa, Germany, Ireland, Great Britain

Monday, April 14, 2008

Pembroke v TRR in pictures