Shear genius at the cutting edge nets €30k for St John's
THE seeds of the endeavours of St. John's GAA bore fruitition on reaping the rewards of hosting the All Ireland and International Sheep Shearing and Wool Handling Championships hosted in Millstreet last May.
From a staging where Donegal's Ivan Scott emerged unbeatable in a remarkable series of performances to collect both All Ireland honours and the International event, the event won unaminous praise from participants and spectators.
For the first time in 31 years, the All-Ireland and International Sheep Shearing returned to Cork thanks to the energy and enthusiasm of St. John's GAA and associates. And at a presentation in the Wallis Arms Hotel, Millstreet, last Friday night, the organising committee presented St. John's GAA with €30,000.
Cork's youngest GAA club founded in 2010 joined forces with the Irish Sheep Shearing Association and Millstreet's multi purpose Green Glens Complex venue to deliver a spectacular two day event with in excess of 3,000 sheep starring in their own right.
Organising chairman Humphey O'Riordan said the decision for a small club to host the event was made easier by the Green Glens venue and the support of the Duggan family.
"When St. John's GAA first discussed holding this prestigious event it seemed a massive undertaking but the immense commitment, outstanding work ethic, energy and drive by the members along with the guidance of the Irish Sheep Shearers Association, main backers CLIK and Philmac made the task rewarding, worthwhile and very enjoyable," he said.
Chairman of St. John's GAA John Twomey applauded the efforts of a co-ordinating committee headed by Humphrey O'Riordan, Sonya O'Riordan and Hugh Sheehan with special thanks reserved for members of the O'Keeffe and Kelleher families for imparting their knowledge to the hosting.
"The event was an enormous exercise for the organising committee, the staging proving a spectator hit, with patrons travelling from around the country to see the some of the world's top shearers in action. Thanks are extended to the committee, stewards, farmers, transport, sponsors, Duggan family and to everybody who made it all possible," he said.
Away from the sheep, the club applauded some outstanding achievement, none more so than to claim the best club at senior scór in the county. From the games arena, individual awards were presented to best newcomer Tom Sheehan, improved player John Cullinane and player of the Year Brian O'Sullivan while a special award went to the O'Keeffe family.