As we reach the end of the present millennium the Athenry Camogie Club is healthy and vibrant and very optimistic for the future. The club formed in the early seventies by Gilbert McCarthy and Fr. Martin O’Grady has had many successes over the years, the ultimate being the All-Ireland Senior Camogie title in 1977. The recent success of the Under 14 team in 1997 winning the All Ireland Féile title is very encouraging.
Over the years the club has had many skilful players such as the Poniard sisters (Midge, Bernie & Anne), the Gannon sisters (Maureen, Ita & Nora), the Duane sisters (Teresa & Anne), the Coen sisters (Josephine & Madeline), the Duffy sisters (Marion & Ann), the Coady cousins (Breda, Olive & Serita), the Higgins sisters, (Mary and Cadie), the Morrissey sisters (Mary & Martina), Noreen Treacy, Greta O’Brien, Ann Donohue, Eileen Hynes, Ann Morris, Marion Kindergan, Mary Daly, Madge Hobbins, Ann Delaney, Una Jordan, Ann Burke, Bridie Cuniffe, Chris Silk, Breege Holland, Ann Coleman, Nora Gannon (Shudane), Teresa Brady, Tina Dolan, Maria Kelly, Eilish Rohan, Orla Madden, Fiona Cooley and many more.
The success of the club over the years is due to the commitment and dedication of people like Gilbert McCarthy, the late Fr. Martin O’Grady, the late Christy Kelly, Anthony Poniard, Frank O’Shea, John Morrissey, the late Kevin Jennings, Dan Whelan and the late Ann Whelan, Noel Madden, Marion Freeney, Noreen Treacy, Gerard & Bridget Connaughton, Brian Hanley, Des & Moira Coen, Noreen Hanley, Mixcie Donohue, Midge Glynn, Gerry Waldron, Mattie Gannon, Tom Page, Tommie Moran and others.
The club is indebted to Presentation College, The Boys National School, Athenry Hurling Club for the use of their pitches down through the years.
This year approx. 80 players played our game. We have a further adult membership of approx. 30. The players are supported by the following committee – Dan Whelan (President), Mixie Donohue (Chairman), Marion Poniard (Secretary and Registrar), Noreen Hanley (Treasurer), Elaine Kelly (Vice-Chairperson), Moira Coen (Assistant Secretary), Ann Treacy (Assistant Treasurer), Des Coen (County Board Rep.) Frank O’Shea, P.J. Molloy, John Morrissey & Mattie Gannon (Manager, Trainer and Selectors of Intermediate, Under 18 and Under 16 players), Tom Page (Manager/Trainer of the Under 14 and Under 13 players), Gerry Waldron and Midge Glynn (Manager & Trainer of the Under 12 and Under 10 Players). Midge is also P.R.O.
This year to date has been another successful year. The Intermediate team reached the county final to be defeated by an older physically stronger Castlegar team. The Under 10 team also reached the county final after two tremendously exciting replays against Mullagh in the Semi-Final to be defeated by Pearses. The Under 12 team reached the semi-final to be defeated by Mullagh. The Under 16 team won their first two matches in the Under 16 Championship. The Intermediate team won their first two matches in the Intermediate League. The Under 18 Championship has not started yet.
The success this year is due to the commitment and dedication of players, managers, trainers, selectors and committee members. The agreement of P.J. Molloy to train the Intermediate, Under 18 and Under 16 players has given a tremendous surge of enthusiasm to players and the club as a whole.
Success at County Level
Congratulations to Darelle Coen, Regina Glynn and Mary Keogh in making the Galway Minor Team and to Alice Poniard and Emer Morrissey on making the panel. Cork beat Galway by one point in the All Ireland Final in Ardrahan. Congratulations also to Sarah Donohue on making the Galway Under 14 Team.
Kevin Jennings and Christy Kelly Memorial Tournaments
Both tournaments took place on the 14th August. The Kevin Jennings Memorial Tournament for Intermediate players was won by Craughwell (Craughwell, Killimorday and Athenry taking part) and the Christy Kelly Memorial Tournament was won by Killimordaly (Killimorday, Pearses, Sarsfields and Athenry taking part). The Christy Kelly Memorial Tournament was particularly successful with great support. Our thanks to the Hurling Club and County Board for the use of Raheen and Kenny Park for the day.
A very sincere thanks to our Sponsors – Athenry Hurling Club Lotto, Fahy’s Centre, Byrne Mech, Thermo King, Eamon & Nena Keogh, Teagasc Staff, Fahy Engineering, Peter Gilhooly, Mary Ward, Cloonan Oil, The Square Inn, AIB, Credit Union, Mid West Farmers, John Comiskey, Brendan Lynskey, Crown, Jim Kelly, Ray & Midge Glynn, The Thatch Bar, Iggie Daly, Tommie Coppinger, Michael Morrissey, Irish Cement, Pat Callanan, Anthony Tuohy, Frank Brody, Ulster Bank, First National Building Society, Cannons of Eaker, Leo Coffey, Martin Burke. Thanks to everybody who sponsored or helped the Club in any way down through the years.
The Club approaches the new millennium with optimism. Before year-end we believe the Under 16 team will bring home the County Minor Cup. In the very near future we believe that our Intermediate Team will bring home the Intermediate Cup and proceed in future years to bring the County Senior Cup and eventually reach that ultimate success that was achieved in 1977 and bring the All Ireland Cup back to Athenry. The success of our Intermediate, Under 16, Under 12 and Under 10 teams this year looks very promising indeed for Athenry Camogie.
Our dearest wish is to have our own pitch and we would welcome help from anybody in this regard.
We would really appreciate more support at our matches.
New members are always welcome. Contact Marion at (091-844751) or any committee member.
Written by Marion Poniard
Published here 08 Feb 2021 and originally published December 1999
Energy and Enthusiasm of one man helping to revive a “Forgotten Town”
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