Monday 15 September 2014

Court action attracts crowds

Basketball tournament held in memory of Jim Lay

James Duggan

Published 03/04/2013 | 05:36

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Members of the Horan's Lixnaw team and their coach, Garda Mary Gardiner from left: Saoirse O'Carroll, Orlaith Cullen, Aoife Mahony and Niamh Cullen at the Jim Lay Basketball Tournament at Listowel Community Centre on Saturday afternoon. Photo: John Reidy

LISTOWEL was bustling at the weekend, as a basketball tournament saw large crowds reside in the market town for the weekend.

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The Jim Lay Basketball Tournament was spread across the whole weekend, with the Novice Ladies' Competition being held on Friday, the main tournament being held on Saturday, and the finals of the competition taking place on Sunday.

Saturday's main event saw a total of eight teams participate; five of which were from Kerry while the remaining three travelled from outside the county. The local teams were from Ballylongford, Ballybunion, Currow and two from Listowel, while the other teams travelled from Kilkenny (Thomastown), Wexford (New Ross) and Dublin (Tritons).

The event has been renamed in honour of the late Jim Lay, who recently passed away at the young age of 54.

"Jim was involved in basketball for the past 20 years before it became as popular as it is now. It was only fitting to name the tournament in his honour to mark his dedication and contribution to the sport", Chairman of the Listowel Community Centre Dinny Carroll said.

Jim's partner, Lisa Palombo, made the long journey from Jim's native of Scotland to Listowel for the event.

As well as this, a Basketball team manager from Nigeria, Natalie Gatz also travelled to Listowel to support the event.

"It was brilliant to have the outstanding support of everyone that was here. The main aim this year was to get the event off the ground again and I think we've definitely done that."

"The attendees generated great business around the town at a time of the year when business is needed – and some of the accommodation in the town was completely full for the weekend with participants! Hopefully we'll double the numbers involved in years to come", Mr Carroll said.


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