Friday, June 24, 2016

Update 24th June

The Death of Joe Cox M.P.

I’d just like to mention and remember at the beginning of these brief notes the cruel death of an English M.P. last week, named Joe Cox. I recognise that in history there have been numerous assassinations of presidents, ministers, prime ministers and politicians down the years. We can see the huge criticism that people in public life often endure from politics to sport. People can do many things quietly but for many working in public view is the demand of their particular work be it politics, sport or whatever. I read today of the concern for the mental health of English footballer Raheen Sterling from ‘vile’ online criticism in the wake of his poor performances. This is bad enough but I would have thought that in our western European society the killing of a public representative would not envisaged. The Guardian headline summed up the character of Joe Cox and the many public Joe Cox’s “She believed in a better world and fought for it every day”.       

The U.K. European Vote

As I write on Thursday morning people throughout the UK are going to vote on their future with the EU. While there have some swings on which way it will go recent days have suggested that the UK voters will vote to stay with the EU and most people in Ireland hope that that is accurate. This would be a reflection of the Scottish Independence vote when a late surge voted to remain in the UK when crunch time really came.

Sporting Kaleidoscope. 

Ireland v Italy

What a week it has been for sport with an Irish hue. After the drubbing Ireland took from Belgium last Saturday last night’s recovery to achieve the necessary ‘result’ against Italy was a huge credit to the tem and management. While the fact that they were playing a much under-strength Italian team will be included in current commentary the legacy sporting history will not dwell on that. Last night saw a fine first performance when Ireland might have had a couple of goals. How a player can almost be strangled in a  headlock and not get a free/penalty escapes me. The general foul play shenanigans in the box in soccer now and how it tolerated by referees is a puzzle to me. Then there was a clear –to me- penalty in front of the referee when McClean was turned over. The second half dipped and after Wes Holahan missed a good chance it seemed as if it was going to be one of those ‘what might have been’ occasions we have all experienced in watching sport. Robbie Brady did a Wimbledon moment in going to his family in the crowd immediately after the game he played such a part in winning with a great goal.
I watched the game in Kit O’Connor’s house in the good company of Joan O’Gara and Sean Casey who are visiting Boyle and numerous other places and people being home from Perth in Western Australia. 

These are the last sixteen fixtures:

Sat. 25th 
Switzerland v Poland @ 2/Wales v Northern Ireland @ 5 Paris/Croatia v Portugal @ 8.

Sun. France v Ireland @ 2 Lyons. (I am sure this has caused a few headaches and frantic re-timing of various events, sporting and otherwise, for Sunday)/Germany v Slovakia @ 5/ Hungary v Belgium @ 9 (check)

Mon. Italy v Spain @ 5 and England v Iceland @ 8.

There are numerous interesting fixtures there. it is regrettable that Northern Ireland have to meet Wales but with all the local teams qualifying –a big achievement-there  was a real possibility of such a clash.
Sunday is the big day with Ireland taking on one of the favourites France. Very interesting.  While Portugal v Belgium is another potential cracker. 
Monday has two varying games, a meeting of two giants in Italy and Spain while England cannot lose to Iceland……surely not!

I see from reports today that airlines are quoting supporters who wish to go to France for the game on Sunday  astronomical prices. This reminds me of the story where the scorpion stings the frog who is doing him the favour of taking him across a river. ‘Why did you do that ? Now of both of us will drown’ said the frog. ‘It’s what I do’ replied the scorpion. (adapted)   


It was such a close thing for Shane Lowry at the U.S  PGA tournament which ended on Sunday. He led by four shots going into the last round but was in bad luck in a number of ways and so ended up on joint second. Still it a great achievement for a player we can so easily identify with. 
The decision of Rory McIlroy to withdraw from the Rio Olympics has had a mixed reception. Golfers such as Rory who are always in the spotlight and wealthy people do not feel a real urgency to seek fame and fortune in the Olympic environment unique as it may be. It is his own personal decision and he is entitled to make it in an uncertain health environment. 

Boyle GAA 

Boyle GAA’s U 14 Feile team will be participating in Cork and district over the week-end starting on Friday evening with two games followed by a game on Saturday morning and hopefully qualifying for the finals on Sunday. As the sponsors pictures show on realboyle they have received strong and wide support from the community and business sectors. It will be a Tournament that they will long remember and we wish them and their mentors well. I hope to be there for the early stages at least. 
Congratulations to St. Joseph’s Boys School on their double win during the week. They won the ‘Top Schools’ Gaelic competition on Tuesday and followed this up with a soccer win on Wednesday. I am aware of the Gaelic competition being a difficult tournament to win and while we have won it a number of times around ’96 and a few years later it takes a good side to do so. So Boyle GAA has with this team and the Feile side a talented group of young players emerging.
Boyle seniors suffered a heavy defeat to a resurgent St. Brigid’s team in Kiltoom on Friday evening. The game was nearly decided in the opening quarter. It was a very disappointing performance but all involved will hardly need me to tell them that. Their next game is against Roscommon Gaels. Once again the match programme was the worst kind, a frustrating mix of fact and fiction.  
Galway had a good win over Mayo on Saturday evening and now it is Roscommon v Galway on July 10th in Galway in the Connacht final. 

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