AND so it begins! The annual sport and cultural festival of excitement, thrills and spills that is the Kerry Community Games. With a new programme of events introduced many areas will now be immersed in practice and rehearsals in order to maintain the Kingdom's superiority as the top county in Ireland.
Beginning last Saturday in Moyvane with the badminton this event turned out to be an enthralling spectacle and badminton is now increasing in popularity in Kerry. There were five area's which participated in the boys event where ten matches took place in a round robin format. Beaufort were 5th, Rock St/Caherslee were 4th, Castleisland were 3rd and the final between the home team, Moyvane/Knockanure and Anascaul/ Camp/ Inch turned out to be a thriller. James Flaherty, Moyvane/Knockanure had victory over Brendan McGovern 21-17 and 21-10. Killian Falvey, Anascaul/ Camp/Inch had victory over Christopher Keane 21-10 and 21-13 sending the competition to doubles where Gearoid Lyne & James Ashe had victory over Michael Collins and Liam Greaney 22-20 and 23-21.
The Anascaul/Camp/Inch boys now join the Moyvane/Knockanure girls who received a walkover in the Provincial Finals in Tralee on March 30.
On Sunday last in North Kerry, 23 teams from Kerry took part in the U13 Boys Indoor Soccer competition. In Listowel, in the morning, Fossa, Killarney South, An Ghaeltacht, Brosna and Beaufort produced some terrific soccer and some brilliant goals were scored. An Gaeltacht had victorie's over Knocknagoshel 5-1 and Killarney South 3-2, with Killarney so near and yet so far. Beaufort had victorie's over Brosna 6-1 and Fossa 4-2. For the right of entry into the semi-finals An Ghaeltacht played Beaufort and both teams produced a super game with both teams level at full time 2-2, both teams each scored in extra time and so the the dreaded penalty shoot out ensued with An Ghaeltacht winning 6-5. Beaufort can hold their heads high however as they showed great skill and sportsmanship.
In Mountcoal, in the morning five teams took to the court and some excellent soccer was witnessed. Ballydonoghue/Lisselton, Milltown/Listry, Rock St/Caherslee, Duagh/Lyre and Spa Muckross. With Spa Muckross winning all 4 games they proceeded to the semi finals with Rock St/Caherslee unlucky when only losing out 3-2 to the eventual group winners. Duagh/Lyre had a young but talented team and will surely learn from their experience whilst Milltown/Listry and Ballydonoghue/Lisselton all participated with great heart and fighting spirit and can be proud of their displays.
In Listowel, in the afternoon, St. Brendans/ Oakpark, Ballyduff, Anascaul / Camp / Inch, Moyvane / Knockanure, Sneem and Ballybunion went to battle and provided excellent entertainment for their large fan base gathered. Ballybunion had success over Moyvane/Knockanure and Sneem whilst Anascaul/ Camp/Inch won over Ballyduff and St. Brendans/ Oakpark. Anascaul/ Camp/ Inch had victory over Ballybunion to reach the semi-finals
In Mountcoal, in the afternoon, Listowel, Kenmare, Dingle, Glenflesk, Lixnaw and Adfert / Kilmoyley played excellent soccer, whilst tough and physical all teams were well prepared. Listowel and Kenmare both had wins over Lixnaw, although Lixnaw were brilliant and can be extremely proud of their efforts. Listowel played Kenmare in order to top the group and when Kenmare raced into a 2-0 lead, it looked like curtains for Listowel, but their never say die attitude saw them level proceedings and there will certainly be better days ahead for them.
Dingle had wins over Glenflesk and Adfert/Kilmoyley and played Kenmare in order to determine the outright winners.
This was an enthralling game and the tension was palpable, with end to end action. Both teams were very well prepared and could not be separated after full time and extra time with the scores at 1-1.
The penalty shoot out was even more exciting when after five penalties each the score was tied 3-3. Sudden death then took place with Dingle winning 3-2. Kenmare can be extremely proud of their efforts and are a credit to their community, coaches and parents and will most certainly feature in the sporting columns of the future.
Dingle, Anascaul/ Camp/ Inch, An Ghaeltacht and Spa Muckross now go forward to the semi finals and finals to be held in Tralee next week.
The next events are the Solo and Group Music next Saturday evening in Abbeydorney and on Sunday next the Girl's and Boy's Table Tennis will take place at Balloonagh school, Tralee at 11am.
The closing date for the girls u13 and u10 indoor soccer and the solo and group singing is this Thursday, January 24 and these events takes place on February 3 in Listowel and February 1 in Abbeydorney respectively.
With the addition of spike ball to the programme of events, Kerry Community Games will facilitate a coaching course for all interested parties. Please contact your area secretary for details.