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CLUB| North Tyrone Charity Game.

Monday 01.02.2016
Team Talk Mag
Club


 

Páirc Mhic Sioghair (Sigerson Park) Ballycolman Strabane was the setting last Friday night for a big Charity floodlit G.A.A. game in aid of a local Gael who is presently suffering an illness and despite the atrocious weather conditions that prevailed the All Ireland winning Tyrone Masters’ squad travelled in their numbers from as far away as the Lough Shore to play a North Tyrone select managed by Strabane stalwart Liam Sweeney.

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Almost thirty players from various clubs throughout the Strabane District turned out with many of them hoping to impress Eugene Bradley and Joe Leonard in order to stake a place on the Tyrone Masters’ panel for 2016.

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It was great to see so many players taking part in the game and all the North Tyrone players wore their own club jerseys so as to avoid any sulking or arguments!

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Former Tyrone player Brendan McLaughlin (Strabane) presently approaching the magical age of 40 was in fine form for the North Tyrone men with former Red Hand All Ireland winner Stephen O’Neill (Clann na nGael) yet a bit short of the required age showing all his skills and expertise even though Liam Sweeney refused to start him as he hadn’t trained. However he did use him as an impact substitute replacing the injured Strabane Sigersons Youth Officer Jason Foley after just five minutes played but there again that was nothing new as that’s how Foley’s playing career usually was!

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Nobody is quite sure of the result of this keenly contested affair but one thing’s certain is that Collie Elliott (Urney) missed a glorious goal chance for the North Tyrone side late on in the encounter and then had the neck to blame it on his fellow club colleague Eugene Langan. Then again it’s not the first time that Collie missed an open goal at Sigersons!

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A massive word of thanks to everyone who played their part in organising the game especially to Liam Sweeney, Richard O’Neill, Dean Molloy and Sean Barkley who were the main organisers, to the Strabane Sigersons club for the use of their facilities and the hospitality afforded during and afterwards to everyone in attendance, to all the players especially those who made long journeys to participate and to the match officials Eamon McHugh (Aghyaran), Sean MacIntyre (Strabane) and Hugo Devine (Owen Roes). Thanks also to Sean MacIntyre and Michael Dixon for the photographs.

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It was great to see so many former players (John-Paul Gallagher please take note) playing their part in the game. Many times the same players have battled it out against each other on the pitch but they all came along on this occasion to support a fellow Gael. Each and every one of them deserves a massive word of thanks and it was brilliant to see the All Ireland winning Tyrone Masters grace the grounds at Páirc Mhic Sioghair.

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Tyrone managers Eugene Bradley and Joe Leonard are apparently looking over their shoulders as Liam Sweeney accompanied by his assistants on Friday night Ciarán McLaughlin and Gerard Murray are hoping to make a bid to take the reins from them ahead of the new season.

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Friday night past epitomised everything good that the G.A.A. is about, whenever there’s a crisis or someone needs assistance then fellow Gaels stand together and play their part to help out.

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