Posted by Dónal on May 24th, 2014
The Luxembourg ladies made the long trip to Amsterdam at the weekend and in spite of the inclement weather, put on a valiant display, recording their first competitive win since the Summer of 2008, and reaching the semi-finals.
Luxembirds’ opening game, played in a heavy rain, was against Belgium A, winners of the previous round in April, and eventual winners again in Amsterdam. An incredible swooping clearance off the line by Maria Timoney for what would otherwise have been a certain goal, inspired confidence and left Luxembirds trailing by just a point at half-time. The conditions worsened in the second half and a change in the Belgian line-up for the second-half saw them run out comfortable winners.
Not to be deterred by this, Luxembirds went out fighting in their next game against Dusseldorf. A great midfield display by Fiona Byrne and Bridget Connolly, and some great combinations between Linda Enright and Sarah Coffey, with Coffey scoring two decisive goals, meant the score-line went Luxembourg’s way! After a long break in play, Luxembourg then took on the home side, Holland. A surge up the field from the back line culminating in a soccer-style goal by Timoney and some fantastic saves by goalkeeper Noelle Lynch were unfortunately not enough to secure victory for the girls. A great all-round display by the girls in this game and despite the result, the girls had still done enough to reach the semi-final. Luxembourg’s last game was against Belgium B, who went on to lose the final to Belgium A. An early injury to Fiona Byrne and the long day took their toll on the ladies and Belgium went on to record the win.
The girls will be hoping to build on this momentum and will be looking to give a strong account of themselves in the next round of the competition – a home tournament in Luxembourg on 14 June.
Team on the day: Noelle Lynch, Maria Timoney, Fiona Byrne, Bridget Connolly, Sarah Coffey and Linda Enright.
Posted by Dónal on May 12th, 2014
On Saturday, the Luxembourg Men’s Gaelic Football team set out for Amsterdam in Round 3 of the Benelux championship looking to continue their solid start to the season.
espite the usual turnover of players, early season form had showed signs of promise and resulted in a second place finish in Den Haag in Round 1 and a third place finish In Brussels in Round 2.
However, preparations for the tournament had been somewhat disrupted due to the Easter break and subsequent May Bank holiday, nevertheless the team were committed to delivering a strong performance.
For the third successive tournament, Luxembourg were drawn in the toughest group which featured hosts Amsterdam as well as a strong Zurich outfit.
In Game One, Luxembourg out thought and out played a competitive Amsterdam with Bernard McCarthy registering a hat trick of goals. A final total of four goals and four points did not flatter the away side in their victory. Needing to beat Zurich to ensure qualification for the semi final Luxembourg recovered from a sluggish start to register the required victory. The game played, in driving rain, required a late goal from McCarthy to put sufficient daylight between the sides. This qualified the team to play Eindhoven in the first semi final. Luxembourg started the game as strong favourites and duly obliged to book their place in the final against Belgium GAA. As this stage, the driving rain had stopped but there was a still a very significant wind blowing. Luxembourg played into the face of this gale in the first half and, well marshalled by keeper Damien Higgins, held their opponents to a combination of scores from long range and frees. They went in at half time trailing by a score of six points to one determined to overturn the deficit. Despite dominating possession in the second half, Luxembourg failed to take a succession of goal opportunities and were unable to capitalise on an outstanding defensive display. The final score line was Belgium’s eight points to Luxembourg’s two points.
Overall the day contained many positives for the squad. The team had strong performers throughout with notable contributions from Goal keeper Damien Higgins, defenders Ciaran Cunnane, Brian Fleming and Rob O’Shea as well as top scorer Bernard McCarthy. The team will hope to build on this display over the coming weeks and go one step further for the next round of the championship which will be held in Luxembourg on June 14th.
GK: Damien Higgins
Backs: Ciaran Cunnane, Eoin Mullins, Micheal O’Connell, Brian Fleming, Rob O’Shea, Brendan O’Callaghan, Niall Coman
Midfield: Eamonn Dunne, Shane Harrington
Forwards: Bernard McCarthy, Martin Cremin, Jack Murphy, Tadhg Dunne, Padraic McCafferty, Malachy Fahey
Selector: Brian Wall
Posted by Dónal on May 12th, 2014