Friday 15 December 2017

Butler eager to end trophy wait

David Medcalf

Hot tips YMCA have a distinct Australian twang as they set about bringing an end to a long barren spell.

YMCA start their Leinster League campaign on Saturday with a match against Sandymount neighbours Railway Union and new coach Ger Butler has no less than four Aussies in his squad for the short trip to Park Avenue (1.15).

Dash Hewitt (Alice Springs) and Marcus Richardson (Hobart) are already well known on the Irish circuit.

Now they have been joined by Allan Dale (Brisbane) and Ian McHugh (Perth) to give the side a strong Antipodean tinge.

Add a couple of ambitious Cork exiles -- Johnny Bruton and Stephen Parker -- to the indigenous mix and it is clear that Butler is dealing from a strong deck.

Graham Shaw, coach of Leinster champions Glenanne, certainly expects that YMCA will be among his chief rivals this term, along with Pembroke Wanderers and Monkstown.

Butler, who has taken over the reins from long-serving Trevor Dagg, has inherited a squad that is not used to winning.

The last piece of serious silverware that came to Claremont Avenue was the Leinster (Mills) Cup back in 1995.

The final link with that era has been severed with the retirement of striker Mikey Fry at the age of 37.

The likes of Andrew Walker and Will Powderly are now approaching the veteran stage, and are keenly motivated to bring the trophy famine to an end before they follow Fry out the back gate.

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