ARDEE (GAA: 3pts, rugby 20 pts)
SEAN McDERMOTT'S (GAA 3-10 pts, rugby 0pts)
The inspiration of the Lennon family created a local first, a game of two halves, Gaelic and then rugby, to raise funds and the awareness of SOSAD (Save our Sons and Daughters), a local organisation aimed at raising awareness of suicide in Ireland, breaking the taboo that surrounds it and provide support and direction for those who feel suicidal and those bereaved.
Ardee Rugby Club were directly affected nearly two years ago when a team-mate Oisin Lennon became a victim. Ann and Frank Lennon (Oisin's parents) presented a memorial trophy that brought two different sporting communities together that knew and enjoyed the company of Oisin on and off the pitch. The Lennon's were well represented on both teams with Domhnall playing for the Sean's and Eoin for Ardee.
The weather was kind and both teams were raring to go. Ardee Rugby Club had never seen many so people attend a match, there was in excess of 200 eager supporters.
It was decided to play Gaelic for the first half and then rugby.
The skill and speed of the Sean McDermott's players was overwhelming for the less nimble forwards of Ardee Rugby, and at least five points and a goal were scored before Ardee even got into the Sean's half. But eventually they endeavoured and scored a point, the crowd's reaction was akin to a last-minute point in a championship match in Croker.
But, alas, the skills of the Sean's continued to keep Ardee under pressure and they built an impressive score of 3-10 to 0-3 at half-time.
The change of pace was evident from the kick off in the second half. Ardee were able to keep possession and scored two tries within the first 10 minutes.
The Sean's tackling was very good and their defence admirable, and they kept Ardee on their toes. With a third try and a penalty Ardee seemed to be in total control but the Sean's, with minutes to go, took territory and possession and were very unfortunate not to walk away with some points. The rugby challenge saw Ardee score 20-0.
During the interval Ardee's U11s mini rugby team entertained and they showed that they really do have a future.
Ann and Frank Lennon presented the trophy to Ardee and also a team-signed Gaelic ball and signed rugby ball to the Sean's. With this annual match-up, everyone's a winner, and it raises much needed funds for SOSAD. After the match everyone was invited back to Churchtown pub by Brendan McGahan as a thank you.
The Lennon family would like to extend a very generous thank you as there was over €2,000 raised for this heartfelt organisation. If you require any more information about SOSAD, you can go to their website www.sosadireland.ie or call 041-9848754.