It is hard to believe we are near the end of another football season. 2013 has been a busy year and we hope to see a trophy added by the time the season finishes. However, before we recap on 2013 to date, I would like to take this opportunity to thank the many volunteers who help us get our teams ready on the field of play. In particular, I would like to thank Liam O’Dwyer and Jim Keane who both stepped down from senior and inter management after the 2012 campaigns and for the giving of their time, commitment and knowledge to developing the teams they managed. They were ably assisted by Marty Masterson, Barry Conroy, Eugene Duffy and Frank Brooks. Likewise we thank Jimmy Walsh for his work and dedication for his involvement with the Minor football teams during 2011 & 2012 and to Cormac Farrell whose work with the Junior C’s for the past number of years has to be commended.
By the same token, I would like to welcome Conor Deegan who has come on board bringing a vast amount of experience on top of his own Intercounty successes. Other additions to the adult scene this year are Noel Basquel, Finnian Hyland, Shane Brooks, Denis Molony, Conor Doolan, Seamus Flaherty, Sean O’Connor, Dan O’Sullivan, John White, Paddy Carr, Fergal O’Neill, Paul Shields, Peter Shovlin, Brendan Gillespie, Dermot O’Reilly, James Murray, Don Carolan, Liam Deane, Paul Coffey and Fergal Brennan. We are delighted to have you alongside the existing pool of managers/selectors in John Mulligan, Patrick Greville, Conor Morris, John Phillips, Bobby O’Sullivan, Noel Madden, Neil Buckingham and Donal McCarthy. With your support and the effort of the players you continue to bring entertainment to the many that watch our games week in week out. Keep up the good work.
Activity on the Pitches
And so to a brief synopsis of our performances so far in 2013:
- Seniors: We have consolidated our position at the top of Division 1. A lot of players have been blooded and it is good to see some of our underage players coming more to the fore – Robbie McDaid, Donagh McCabe, Ryan Basquel, Seamus Keane, Ciaran Gibbons and Colly Dunne. The mixture of youth and the experience of stalwarts such as Kenny Naughton, Andy Kerin, Cormac Smith and Mark O’Sullivan has enabled us develop in the manner required as we head into the league playoffs. Consistency builds confidence which in turn will hopefully lead to success.
In the championship we progressed past Lucan, Crokes and Brigids in games packed with incident. Unfortunately we came up short against St. Vincents and there is no doubt that we will learn from the experience. There is very little to separate the top teams in football except the experience and consistency they have at this level.
- Inters: This is a very young team and they have managed not alone to hold their own but to compete for a league play-off spot. But for one or two results, qualification for the league playoff would have been achieved.
The championship saw the team bow out in the quarter final to St. Pats. Donabate just coming up short especially in the in the last ten minutes of the match. This team is probably the most challenging team to manage where you are trying to strike a balance between winning and developing players to progress to the Senior ranks. It is also vital that experienced players contribute to this development and we are fortunate to have players of the calibre of Collie Leane, Mark FitzGerald, Justin Owens and Niall Clarke in this regard. Now it’s up to everyone to push on.
- Junior As: Overall it has been a very challenging year for this team with many of the players progressing to the Inter ranks. The net effect has been to see the team struggle towards the bottom half of the league but they retained their Div.5 status.
In the championship, the team lost narrowly to Crokes. An infusion of new blood is required to re-establish this squad amongst the top tier teams in the division and to push for promotion in 2014. However, this will also require a greater commitment from some of the existing players.
- Junior Bs: It was a difficult ask for this team to follow up on last year success. The team finished just outside the league playoffs and an exit to Ballymun in the championship meant the team didn’t enjoy the same success as last year. However on the plus side the team provided some of the young minor lads with their first taste of adult football. This was handled in a structured manner with the cooperation of Conor Morris and Liam Deane whose oversight saw that it happened in a controlled and well managed fashion. The lads certainly enjoyed the experience.
- Junior Cs: This team finished the year just outside the play-offs losing the last two league away matches to the top teams by one point on both occasions.
Likewise in the championship, the team was narrowly defeated by Crokes by a one point margin. I know this bunch of lads well and they are determined to correct the record books next year by commencing their pre-season before Xmas – what dedication – it certainly wouldn’t have happened in my day!!
- Minors: One of the greatest successes was the fielding of 3 teams at this age level and not alone that but to be competitive in all leagues and qualify for the quarter-finals of the D championship and Semi-Finals of the A and C championship is unprecedented. I know there was disappointment amongst all concerned not to progress to the championship finals. It takes great communication amongst the management teams to achieve this – well done everyone. Indeed there have been significant scores put up by all of the teams in matches this year which has been a difficulty for us in the past. See also individual reports in the football section team reports.
Pride of place must go to Michael Dara McCauley and Darragh Nelson on picking up their second All-Ireland football winners medal back in September against a Mayo team that had a former Boden senior player as one of their selectors, in Tom Prendergast. Let’s also not forget the contribution of fellow squad member Declan O’Mahony who along with the lads picked up his first senior All-Ireland medal in addition to a National league and Leinster title. Michael Darragh also had the special honour of receiving a second All-Star award and was named footballer of the year.
We had a very strong representation at minor level with seven of our players selected – Sam Molony, Darragh Gogan, Tom Hannifin, Colm Basquel, James Madden, Shane Clayton and Warren Egan. Let’s hope we see these lads reach their potential and play their part with our Adult teams.
We would also like to acknowledge the contribution this year of Mark Fee as selector and coach to the Dublin Minor team. Mark continues to offer great coaching support across all our football teams.
Fund Raising Events
The club is no different to the rest of the clubs in that we have had to make significant efforts to match revenue with expenditure and in this respect the football section, in common with other sections, has made huge efforts to manage our expenses in line with the revenue raised through fundraising. We would ask all to continue to support fundraising as best you can in these challenging times. In addition to securing funds through our main sponsorship from H&K, revenue was secured through match sponsorship, the Boxing night, the Minor Quiz night and the Golf Classic.
We thank you all for your support. In particular we all remember the wonderful entertainment provided by our Boxers earlier this year. A special thanks to those who took part on the night – Mark O’Sullivan, Dermot Manley, Brian Devlin, Niall Clarke, Paul Naughton, Cillian Blake, Shane Hogan, Sean Cantwell, Dara Shovlin, Shane Gallagher, and Andrew Brennan.
We need to acknowledge and thank our sponsors who are an important part of sending out teams properly kitted out and equipped to represent the club. Chief among the sponsors is H&K engineering for their sponsorship of the Senior and Minor teams, In addition, I would like to thank Daltec for their sponsorship of the Junior C jersies, and the Blue Haven, for their sponsorship of the 21 team. I would also like to extend our appreciation to Cadburys, Rathfarnham Credit Union (Minor Jerseys), Pat Doyle (National Guild of Master Craftsmen), George King Butchers, Boon Edam, Darby Timbs (Corporate Underwriting), Liam Shovlin (Shovlin tiling) and to Fergus Reid and Valvoline for their continued support. As regards sponsorship, no word of appreciation would be complete without thanking Liam Deane and Danny Griffin for all their effort in securing sponsorship for the teams.
On a sad note, we fondly remember Liam Delaney, past Chairman of the club and Ladies Football and juvenile mentor. Liam will be remembered across all sections within the club for his contribution and dedication to the club. He will be sadly missed especially for his wry smile and sense of humour.
Ar dheis go raibh a anam.
Don’t forget, the wearing of Gum-Shields is now compulsory from the 1st January 2014. Details are on the website should you wish to avail of local expertise in fitting and purchasing the Gum shield.
I would like to repeat the message that keeping the club and the section running efficiently requires a lot of teamwork from the committee and a large number of other volunteers. On behalf of the Football Section, I would like to formally thank all of those who contributed in a big or small way to the running of the section. Your support is much appreciated. So please don’t be shy in putting yourself forward for 2014!
And so it just remains for me to wish you and all your families a very happy Christmas, a deserved rest to recharge the batteries and best wishes for 2014. Similarly best wishes to my fellow playing sections in the year ahead.