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Gallic flair fends off St John's challenge

IN Marlay Park they are calling it 'The French Invasion'. But there was no need for alarm.

Ballinteer St John's chairman, Peadar O'Shea, opened the doors of the Ballinteer clubhouse to welcome a group of engineering students from Paris University.

They are attached to the IBC School of English in Dawson Street. Tom Hayes gave them a powerpoint presentation about Enterprise Ireland's success.

The students then requested a night of Irish music and dancing. They weren't disappointed. The young members of the St John's club band were on stage.

Kieran Brennan, Eamonn Coleman and John Kelly introduced the visitors to the skills of Gaelic football.



"We had a couple of training sessions and it was amazing to see how quickly they adapted to the game," explains Kieran.

A challenge match was arranged between the students and a Ballinteer Selection on the club's all-weather surface.

It was a case of 'ooh la la' as the students played splendidly to earn a worthy draw. It finished 2-7 each. The French waked off the pitch with their morale as high as the Eiffel Tower.

"The French students enjoyed themselves. They had a wonderful time in the club and we were thrilled to have them," said Kieran.

The Ballinteer Braves created a few ooh la las themselves when they subsequently knocked Plunkett's out of the Senior Football Championship.