1894

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Laune Rangers – 1894

 

In the 1894 Co. Championship, Laune Rangers were given a bye to the semi-final but failed to appear against Ballymacelligott and, having been given two opportunities to play, were disqualified. That Laune Rangers did not play is difficult to understand, given the fact that they had beaten Ballymac in a challenge in Cahersiveen by 0-7 to 0-2 earlier in the year. Equally, Laune Rangers had provided seven of the county team, including the captain, Paddy O Regan, who had played and beaten Tipperary earlier in the year. Perhaps the Rangers were upset by the decision of Central Council to order a replay in that game, a decision by which Kerry refused to abide.

 Dan P. Murphy was re-elected as Joint-Secretary of the Co. Board and

Pat Teahan was re-elected as Kerry delegate to the Central Council.

 

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William (Bill) O Brien was Secretary of Laune Rangers’ Club and Dan P. Murphy was captain of the team.

 

Co. Senior Football Championship

Six teams entered for the County Senior Football Championship, Tralee, Cahersiveen, Lixnaw, Irremore, Ballymac and Laune Rangers. Laune Rangers were given a bye to the semi-final.

 

Semi-final on Sun. 29th July at Tralee: Ballmacelligott w/o; Laune Rangers scr.

Owing to the failure of the Killorglin men to turn up to meet Ballymacelligott, what would have been a very interesting match fell through. The fact that Rangers would not meet Ballymacelligott seemed to have got abroad before the time fixed for the match, for very few turned up to the grounds. Ballymac lined up and, by absence of the Rangers, claimed and were awarded the match by the referee. Laune Rangers objected to the awarding of the game and the game was re-fixed.

 

Semi-final on Sun. 4th Nov. at Tralee: Ballymacelligott w/o; Laune Rangers scr.

Again Laune Rangers failed to appear for the game. The matter was discussed at the Co. Board meeting on Thurs. 6th Dec. and, after a lengthened argument, the game was awarded to Ballymac.

 

Eventually, Ballymacelligott was awarded the Co. Championship without having played a game, as Laune Rangers or Irremore failed to play against them.

 

Football Tournament Games

 

The Gaelic Sports and tournament organised in aid of an English Catholic Charity came off in the Sports Field, Tralee on Sunday 13th May. Excursion trains ran from Cahersiveen, Listowel and Castlegregory. As the day wore on the rain cleared and, though there was a fairly strong wind, which made matters unpleasant for football, the weather on the whole proved fairly satisfactory.

1st Game – Tralee 1-7; Cahersiveen 0-7. Ref: Dan P. Murphy (Laune Rangers).

Hurling game – Kilmoily 1-1; O Dorney 0-3.

2nd Football game – Ballymac 1-1; Laune Rangers 0-0.

The teams agreed to play for only a quarter of an hour each way. The play was mostly one-sided as Ballymac kept their opponents on the defensive until the call of halftime at which stage they led by 1-0 to 0-0. On the change of sides, Ballymac again forced the fighting and added a point.

Laune Rangers: Dan P. Murphy (capt.), Florence Doherty (Vice-captain), Danny Clifford, Mike Walsh, Paddy Joy, John Guerin, John O Sullivan, Jack O Shea, Pat Sugrue, P. Wharton, P. Cahillane, J. Cahillane, Jeremiah Hayes, Mick Flynn, Matt Moroney, Eddie O Sullivan, Mossy O Sullivan.

 

Three matches were played in Cahersiveen on Sun. 10th June to help defray the expense incurred in the construction of the O Connell Church in Cahersiveen.

1st Game – Cahersiveen 0-3; Tralee 0-2. Ref: Pat Teahan (Laune Rangers).

2nd Game – Valentia 1-3; Killarney 0-7. Ref: Dan P. Murphy (Laune Rangers).

3rd Game – Laune Rangers 0-7; Ballymac 0-2.

That was the most interesting contest of the day. Both teams had good records and there meeting was undoubtedly tough. Killorglin had the favour of the wind on the leather being thrown up, which was quickly taken possession of by Paddy O Regan, who cleverly kicked a point, which was followed in quick succession by another. The oval was then sent from one side of the field to the other. Killorglin then rushed and two more points were secured to leave the halftime score at 0-4 to 0-0 in favour of the Rangers.

                On change of sides, Ballymac put forward all their prowess and strength to make up lost ground and, for over ten minutes, the leather was held by them close to the teeth of their opponents’ goal-posts, but no score was made. Killorglin then put forward their strength and scored two more points. Play was then of an even character and a determined rush was again made by Ballymac and a point was secured, to which they soon added another. From that till the call of time no other score was made.

Laune Rangers: Dan P. Murphy (capt.), Jeremiah Hayes, Florence Doherty, Mike Walsh, Danny Clifford, Pat Sugrue, Patie O Reilly, John O Sullivan, John P. Murphy, Paddy O Regan, James O Regan, Mike Walsh, John O Reilly, L. Murphy, Paddy Joy, Michael O Donoghue, Pat Teahan.

 

Munster Football Championship

 

On Sat. 4th Aug. notification was received by the Kerry Co. Board of the impending Kerry v Tipperary inter-county match at Cork Park. It was immediately decided to appoint Messrs John Corcoran (Ballymac), J. McQuinn (Gortatlea), John Langford (Killarney), Pat O Brien (Keel), Jeremiah Clifford (Ballymacelligott), Pat Teahan (Laune Rangers) and Dan P. Murphy (do.) to select a football team at Killorglin on Mon. 13th Aug.

Sun. 19th Aug. at Cork Park: Kerry (Ballymac) 0-4; Tipperary (Arravale Rovers) 0-2.

Kerry: Paddy O Regan (Laune Rangers) capt., Pat Sugrue (do.), John P. Murphy (do.), Tim Curran (do.), Jim Curran (do.), John O Reilly (do.), Danny Clifford (do.), Mick Hayes (Killarney), Bill Fleming (do), Pat O Brien (Keel), Jeremiah Clifford (Ballymac), John Corcoran (do.), J. Carroll (Irremore), Michael Dowling (Tralee), D. Lynch, Bryan Connor (Ballymac) and William O Sullivan (Tralee). Field Umpire – Dan P. Murphy (Laune Rangers), Goal Umpires – Tom Slattery and Denis Bunyan. Ref: Tom Carroll (Cork).

                Subsequently, Tipperary objected to the score and, unbelievably, Central Council disregarded its own rules on the finality of the referee’s decision and re-fixed the game. A series of letters then followed to the Editor of the Kerry Sentinel (see below).

 

Administration/Miscellany

 

Peter J. Kelly, An Ghaillimh, was Uachtarán CLG.

 

The Annual Convention of the Kerry Co. Board was held on Wed. 21st March. Laune Rangers were represented by J.P. O Sullivan and Tim Curran. Co. Board officers from Killorglin, Dan P. Murphy, Secretary, and Central Council Delegate, Pat Teahan, were also in attendance. The following officers were elected: President – Thomas Slattery (Tralee), Vice-President (a new position) – Denis Sheehan, Tralee, (J.P. O Sullivan had been offered the position, but declined the offer), Joint-Secretaries – Dan P. Murphy (Laune Rangers) and Denis Bunyan (Tralee), Treasurer – Michael Hanlon (Tralee), South-Kerry representatives on the Co. Board – Pat Teahan, J.P. O Sullivan and William O Brien, all from Killorglin. Dan P. Murphy and Denis Bunyan were appointed as delegates to the Thurles Convention. Pat Teahan was re-elected as Central Council delegate.

 

A meeting of persons interested in the Tralee Sports Field was held on Mon. 26th Feb. in the Chamber of Commerce. The meeting was called by the trustees, Messrs Donovan and Latchford, for the purpose of winding up the affairs of the field. The GAA was represented by Thomas Slattery (President), Denis Sheehan (Vice-President), Maurice Moynihan (Tralee), William O Brien (Laune Rangers), Dan P. Murphy (Joint-Secretary), William O Connell (Kilmoily) and Jeremiah Hanafin (Tralee). The Bicycle Club had failed to pay the rent of the field and during the meeting a dispute arose as to the arrears owed by the Bicycle Club. The Kerry Co. Board held a meeting to discuss the matter prior to sending a deputation to that meeting.

                William O Brien, Secretary of Laune Rangers’ Club, wrote a letter of explanation to the editor of the Kerry Sentinel (Sat. 10th March 1894): “Dear Sir, I would like to supply you with an accurate summary of the proceedings of the Gaelic Convention of Monday 26th ult., as the general body of the Gaels of Kerry, judged by the representation on that day, feel an interest in the result of those proceedings. The purpose of the Convention was to consider what effect would the closing of the Tralee Sports Field, as an arena of athletic sports, have on the future prospects of the association, and what could be done by the Gaels to retain the field for its present popular purpose. The delegates, while realising that according to the advertisement of the trustees the affairs of the Sports Field might be wound up on that day, considered at the same time that they had not sufficient information at their command to make any definite move in the matter. This position was anticipated at an earlier informal meeting and a deputation was sent to the trustees, Messrs Latchford and Donovan, to ask for such information as would clear the difficulty. Mr. Latchford courteously gave the deputation as much information as he had it in his power to give at the time, mentioning that the affairs of the Sports Field were still a matter of dispute between the present holders (The Bicycle Club) and the trustees, in connection with which the members of the deputation expressed their belief that the Gaels would not put themselves into competition with the present holders of the field for its management and control. That opinion was thoroughly approved of by the convention. A deputation was appointed to attend the meeting convened by the trustees of the Field not, as Mr. Slattery properly pointed out to that meeting, to take part in its proceedings or effect them in any way, but solely on account of the interest the Gaels felt in any decision that meeting might come to, which would affect the continuance of the field as an athletic rendezvous. The conditions of the matter having been held by the delegates to preclude any action, ‘they’, as one of the delegates wittily put it, ‘decided to do nothing and did it unanimously and elaborately.” The meeting was adjourned without resolution of the difficulty.

 

Arising out of the above decision of the Central Council regarding the Kerry v Tipperary match, a series of letters followed to the Editor of the Kerry Sentinel.

               

1. Sat. 22nd September 1894 – from Denis Bunyan, Hon. Sec. Kerry Co. Board:

“Dear Sir, will you kindly afford me space in your valued paper to offer a few remarks with regard to the meeting of the Central Council, held in Cork on last Sunday, relative to the disputed match, Kerry v Tipperary. On the day in question, Kerry won by a decisive score, which will be admitted by any fair-minded person who witnessed the match. Why Tipperary should think fit to bring forward their trumped up objections is a matter that will ultimately, if persisted in, ruin the GAA. The match was refereed by a Cork-man, perfectly independent of either Kerry or Tipperary and, who discharged his duties with the utmost impartiality to either. Yet, his ruling was disputed and set aside by some members of the Central Council, who were probably hundreds of miles away when the match was being played, while the voices of two respectable gentlemen, notably Mr. Michael Deering (President Cork Co. Board) and Mr. David Walsh (Hon. Sec. Central Council), who were in the field, were not listened to. The match was proposed to be replayed by Mr. Frank Dineen (Limerick). Is this the same Mr. Dineen who, when Killorglin objected to the Young Ireland match in ’93, jumped to his feet at the Central Council meeting and declared that if the referee’s decision was not upheld, it would be only ridiculous for one county to meet another, as the inevitable appeal to the Central Council would be sure to follow? If so, he has materially changed, not for the better, I am sorry to say. I am certain that Kerry will not gratify Tipperary by playing them again this year, as they have beaten them fairly and squarely.”

 

2. Sat. 22nd Sept. 1894 – from Paddy O Regan (Laune Rangers), captain of the Kerry team:

“Dear Sir, kindly permit me to make a few remarks on the action of the Central Council on the appeal of Tipperary to the referee’s decision in the Kerry v Tipperary match played at Cork Park, on Sunday 19th August. I wish, first, to point out that Kerry’s representative on the Council (Pat Teahan, Laune Rangers) got no notification of the meeting until Saturday night, at 8.30, and was, therefore, unable to be at Cork on Sunday. If he were able to be there, it would have been his duty to show, as I shall attempt to in this letter, that such an objection, as Tipperary preferred, should not have been entertained at all by the Central Council. This is obvious from the fact that the rules specify that the referee’s decision on the facts of the game is final. I ask anyone of the members who took part in that meeting to produce any edition of the Gaelic rules in which that rule, respecting the finality of the referee’s decision, is not fully and plainly stated. Appeals to the Central Council on matters affecting the constitution of teams, such as a difference in the number of players in opposing teams, or the fact that teams-men had been suspended by the Gaelic authorities, or had been taken from other associations, are intelligible, but that an appeal should be made and entertained on a matter directly excluded by a special rule is another incident showing how much of the decay of the association has been brought about by the chronic incompetence of the Central Councillors. The rule cannot be violated without much mischief, for if the referee’s judgement, helped by independent sources, is open to appeal, where is the prospect of conducting a series of matches fairly and in due time? Will finality be taken from the referees and attached to the decision of a meeting composed of persons who may not have been present on the day of a match at all? And if the door be opened for one appeal on such a reason, will it be shut on another, which has as good a reason to back it? And ultimately will it come to this that our modern Tailtean games will be decided on the strengths of affidavits about ‘free kicks’ and ‘running with the ball’? Affidavits! Petty Sessions procedure! Oh! Shades of Matt the Thrasher and Ned Brophy! Will ye kindly tell Messrs Bourke and Ryan that Tipperary’s magnificence didn’t depend on ‘affidavits’ in your time or, perhaps, you’ll support it still yourselves by sending the ghost of ‘Wattletoes’ on a rougher mission to your affidavittised successors. Verily, the New Tipperary spirit, which can neither take a defeat decently nor gain a victory fairly, is not an improvement on that of the Old Tipperary one we all knew so well. For my part, speaking on behalf of the majority of the Kerry players, I decline to replay a match, which we have fairly and decisively won. Having made the blunder of entertaining such an appeal, the C.C should have given Tipperary the match, if they believed their numerous affidavits. If they disbelieved them, Kerry should have got it – referee, umpires and disinterested witnesses of the Cork Board being unanimous on the point. It is not conceivable on either supposition how the match could have been ordered to be played again. That order is indeed so ridiculously unfair that I would go so far as to advise that the Kerry Board should be dissolved until the present members of the C.C. will be replaced by others as, while they remain on the C.C., time and expense will be wasted in the playing of matches, which will have to be won over and over again and defended at petty, burlesque Gaelic law-suits before a chance will be had of playing a final for the gold medals.”

 

3. Wed. 26th Sept. 1894 – from John Bourke, Hon. Sec. Tipperary Co. Board GAA:

“Sir, I am not surprised that Mr. Regan, Kerry, should attempt to rebuke the Central Council of the GAA for reversing the decision of the referee in the championship football match recently played in Cork between Kerry and Tipperary, because that gentleman’s conduct from start to finish was palpably favourable to Kerry and antagonistic to Tipperary. But the explanation is that Mr. Regan and his friends relied too much on the support of Mr. Carroll and consequently did not anticipate such a decision. If the Kerry representative had attended the meeting of the Central Council on Sunday in Cork, I fail to see how he could have done better for his county than did Mr. Carroll and the other members of the Cork Board, who came to volunteer their evidence in the case and assumed a most aggressive attitude towards Tipperary. What will Mr. Regan and the thousands of people who witnessed the match say when they hear that Mr. Carroll, at the investigation of the objection, denied in toto that Tipperary scored any goal – whether rightly or wrongly – in the first half-hour of the match, or that he awarded any forty-yards kick throughout the whole game? The newspaper reports of the match were clear enough on the latter and, when we offered, at the above meeting, to accept them as a decision, Mr Carroll reiterated his denial. The newspapers are in existence and speak for themselves on the point, but not only the newspapers but Mr. Fitzpatrick, of the Cork Board, who was independent umpire, contradicted Mr. Carroll and said there was a forty-yards’ kick awarded to Tipperary in the first half-hour. Imagine a gentleman undertaking the responsibility of refereeing an important football match who cannot remember that he gave one – for there was only one – 40 yards in the match, especially when there was a score made off it. Mr. Regan’s assertion that the match was ‘fairly and decisively won’ is absurd on the face of it. Will he, like Mr. Carroll, deny that Tipperary scored a goal in the first half-hour, and that instead of having allowed or disallowed the goal, the referee gave a forty yards’ kick to the Tipperary team, off which a point was scored? This is the amusing part of the transaction, because we cannot understand the action of the referee in giving us a free kick and, what is still worse, he does not understand it himself and, when your humble servant asked him to explain it at the meeting of the Central Council on last Sunday, he was unable to do so. Will Mr. Regan deny that Kerry got a point, which they really did not make, in the first half-hour? Will he deny that Tipperary scored a second goal, to use his own words, ‘fairly and decisively’, in the second half, which the referee also disallowed? Will he deny that the match lasted four minutes longer in the last half-hour, when a strong wind favoured Kerry, than in the first, and that the last point, which his team made, was got within the last half minute? Is this what ‘fairly and decisively’ means in the Kingdom of Kerry? I submit, Sir, that instead of being ordered to play the match over again, Tipperary was ‘fairly and decisively’ entitled to it. Tipperary wants no bloodless victory and Tipperary will be at Mallow to meet Kerry on the 30th inst. And, if Kerry was able to win ‘fairly and decisively’ on the 19th ult., what has occurred since then to prevent her from repeating the triumph? Mr. Regan’s argument that the Central Council has no power to entertain objections of this particular class is ridiculous. Surely he does not want to establish the theory that in an important match – for instance, the final for the All-Ireland Championship – absolute power to award the match should be vested in one individual. Will Mr. Regan be more specific in his charge that ‘Tipperary can neither take a defeat decently nor gain a victory fairly’? It will take a little more than Mr. Regan to tarnish the Gaelic reputation of Tipperary, and those who live in glass houses, ought not to throw stones. In conclusion, I desire to say that so far as Mr. Regan’s threat, that his team will not replay the match, is concerned, we have nothing to say to it. It is a matter entirely for himself and his men. We will be there.”

               

4. Sat. 29th September – from William O Brien, Hon. Sec. Laune Rangers:

“Dear Sir, The Kerry players have, through their officials up to this, forborne to argue the facts of the game, as they have considered it of more importance that the large body of Gaels, who read your paper, should be made to realise the injury done to the Association by the C.C. in breaking one of its fundamental rules. Our players are confident that the C.C. itself will have to set up the old rule of the finality of the referee’s decision as, until they do, they will be among the largest sufferers themselves by the delays and disputes rendered by their own action. One of the effects of that action will undoubtedly be to leave them three years behind hand with the All-Ireland matches, instead of only a year and a half, as they invariably are of late, and that at a time when the leading teams are trying to remove the absurdity of the running-gale system in the holding of the matches. If our chances of the All-Ireland honours were far better (and we think them good enough, seeing that we have beaten by double scores a team of such big pretensions as Tipperary sent to Cork), we would still sacrifice them rather than acknowledge the action of the Central Council as valid and fair by playing a well-beaten team with the chance that, if we should beat them again, we might be ordered to play the best two out of three with the next county also, at the mere whim of Mr. Dineen or some other puisne Judge of the Winter Assizes of the Central Council! If Mr. Bourke were a representative Gael, he would give some attention to this aspect of the question and inform us if an independent referee, aided by independent umpires, is not the best final authority on the facts of the game, who then is? The newspapers, is it? Or the spectators? Or Mr. Bourke himself? Why, there is no sporting association in the world, no matter how extensive or active, could bear twelve months’ application of the principle, which Mr. Dineen has invented for the temporary benefit of Tipperary.

                Having said so much by way of support to Mr. Regan’s forcible letter on the more important side of the question, I have to ask space for a little exercise at Mr. Bourke’s presentation of the facts of the game. Any reader could perceive that Mr. Bourke wrote his letter while suffering from the mental attitude of one who cannot and will not understand that Kerry should gain a single point unless Tipperary should be allowed to counter-balance it with a goal. The referee, who suffered in Mr. Bourke’s opinion from the triple disqualification of being intelligent, disinterested and firm, could not understand this postulate of Tipperary’s invincibility, and therein consisted his peculiar crime. The manner in which, in Mr. Bourke’s letter, points for Kerry vanish and goals for Tipperary appear, shows that it only needs the presence of a great occasion to evolve genius such as that displayed by Tipperary’s wonderful logician and ready-reckoner. For instance, if in a match, full of movement and frequent claims on the referee’s attention, Mr. Carroll, surrounded as he was by men of Mr. Bourke’s lung power and excitability, could not remember every decision he gave (and I will soon prove Mr. Carroll did do this) during the match, ergo, all Mr. Bourke’s fanciful goals and points were unquestionably made, and Mr. Bourke bases this conclusion on the result of a piece of cross-examination of Mr. Carroll, which he parades in order that the premier county may perceive that Lord Russell isn’t in the first fifteen with him. It is only the possessor of such all-round ability could execute the brilliant ruse of winning a match without kicking it, by votes, plus affidavits. Seriously, the conduct of Mr. Bourke and his friends on the field at the last match, and also at others, would give people, who have not the honour of living within sight of the Galtees, the impression that they would not go so far as to claim that it should be taken for granted that Tipperary, without playing at all, is facile princeps in the All-Ireland matches, and that the 31 others might play off at leisure for any honour that might attach to a distant second. But, to quote Mr. Bourke, ‘What will Mr. Regan, and the thousands of people who witnessed the match, say when they hear that Mr. Carroll, at the investigation of the objection, denied in toto that Tipperary scored any goal – whether rightly or wrongly – in the first half hour of the match, or that he awarded any forty yards’ kick throughout the whole game’. If Mr. Carroll said so, Mr. Carroll was right. In the first half-hour of the match, Mr. Carroll gave no forty yards’ free. He gave a free-kick, off a foul committed by one of our forwards, in the vicinity of the forty yards’ line. The foul consisted of catching a Tipperary player. Mr. Bourke assumes this to have been a forty yards’ ‘free’ and, not knowing of course how he earned it, goes on further to assume that Tipperary made a goal and were not allowed it. No claim for a goal was made at the time or after the match and who can believe that a team, who were so insubordinate as to refuse to play if one of their men left the field by order of the referee as a penalty for vicious play, would not claim a goal and kick up the same fuss about it if disallowed a goal in the first half. Mr. Carroll is, therefore, correct in saying he neither allowed nor disallowed a goal in the first half. Again, Mr. Bourke says, ‘Will he (Mr. Regan) deny that Tipperary scored a second goal, to use his own words, fairly and decisively, in the second half, which the referee also disallowed?’

                This is the explanation of Mr. Bourke’s second goal. A Tipperary player kicked the ball outside the line. The referee whistled for Kerry’s throw-in. One of the Tipperary players kicked in the ball, and his friends followed his example and continued to play, while the referee continued whistling. The Kerry players suspended play. The Tipperary men kicked a goal, or probably three or four and a few points for their own satisfaction. The referee, after a short time, still signalling, came up and brought the ball back to where the ‘throw-in’ had occurred, disallowing the result of the magnificent powers of the Tipperary men, while our players were chatting on the sideline. I do not think it necessary to refer to Mr. Bourke’s method of subtracting points from the Kerry score, strengthened though it may be by the frequent use of the immortal Sairey Gamps ejaculation, ‘who deniges it?’ The referee, of course, unfairly gave them all to us! Mr. Carroll, I trust, will find it easy to forgive an accusation of male fides from a gentleman, who even works up a charge of favouritism of the Kerry players against the breeze that blew across Cork Park that day, possibly because it kissed the Kerry hills in its journey, or went up with the team! As to Mr. Regan’s remark that the Kerry players would not go to Mallow, I approve of it for his reasons and for the additional one that any referee, the C.C. would send there, would allow Kerry a score when they would make it and that, we know, would never suit Tipperary. They would consider it ridiculous, in fact. ‘Tipperary can’t be beaten. If our opponents score, they shall not be allowed that score – not while there’s an affidavit in the county. Neither shall a referee prevail against us’. That, as we understand it, is the vow of Tipperary – the new vow.”

 

5. Wed. 3rd Oct. 1894 – from John Bourke, Hon. Sec. Tipperary Board GAA:

“Dear Sir, permit me to say in reply to the letter in your issue of Saturday from Mr. William O Brien of the Laune Rangers GAA that I do not believe that the intimidatory tone of this flippant production will have the effect of coercing the members of the Central Council in the remotest degree. Now, forsooth, the members of that Council must be ostracised because they dared to bring in a verdict adverse to the wishes of the great Mr. O Brien and Co. Did consummate audacity ever go further? Perhaps Mr. O Brien is formulating a movement, which would enable him to became president of the GAA and thereby have an opportunity of displaying his great genius and eloquence. If such be the case, I should like to lend him my humble assistance, but I greatly fear he has made a bad start. While, however, he substantially corroborates many of the statements in my letter of the 21st September, he refutes nothing and refuses to give an answer directly to any of my queries, and he coolly asserts that the referee awarded no forty yards’ kick in the first half-hour but, for a foul committed by one of the Kerry men, he gave a free kick in the vicinity of the forty yards’ line. He went very near denying it too, like the versatile Mr. Carroll, who stated that he gave no free-kick at all during the match. Either Mr. O Brien or Mr. Carroll must be wrong at this point. I claim that the first point scored by Tipperary was made off a forty yards’ kick, which was ordered to be taken by the referee in lieu of a goal properly made and regularly claimed by the umpire for Tipperary, Mr. Joe Ryan. One fact is worth any amount of the ‘rot’, which Mr. O Brien displays in his letter, and, in this dispute, both facts and circumstances are against him. Let Mr. O Brien’s great imaginary powers lead him to think for a moment that Tipperary did not score those two goals, and discuss the issue on the score as given by the referee at the conclusion of the match, viz., Kerry, 4 points; Tipperary, 2 points, and then see how the case would stand. I again ask the plain and simple question – Did Kerry not get a point in the first half-hour that they did not make and did the referee not prolong the match six minutes longer in the second half-hour, when a strong wind was blowing with Kerry, than in the first and was not one of the points, which Kerry got credit for, made in the last half-minute of this extra time? I say, yes, and the referee did not communicate the fact to the Tipperary umpire that he intended to have the match continued for extra-time until the proper time was within one minute and a half of being up and then the score stood – Tipperary, 2 points; Kerry, 2 points, including the point, which they got and which they did not make. Here I have established the fact that Kerry got two points improperly obtained, one not being made at all and the other made during extra-time, and now may I ask Mr. O Brien, with all his great hubbub, how does Kerry suffer through the decision of the Central Council? Is it not true for Mr. O Brien to say that, while Tipperary was scoring the second goal, the Kerry men suspended play. Those who witnessed the match are the best judges of Mr. O Brien’s veracity in that respect and, I am sure that they will be able to arrive at a proper decision on his side of the case when they see such an unscrupulous statement made by him. There are many other statements in Mr. O Brien’s letter quite as reckless, which I shall not notice. Mr. O Brien says that ‘an independent referee, aided by independent umpires etc,’ is the best final authority on the game. I have already shown that the referee was a partisan of the deepest dye, and I should like to know who were the independent umpires that aided him. Mr. O Brien’s Cork friends carefully avoided examining those independent umpires, with the exception of Mr. Fitzpatrick, who came up to contradict the referee when he denied that he had given his novel decision on the first goal Tipperary scored. Beyond that, he did not go and the most important witness of all was not forthcoming , that is the independent umpire – save the mark – who gave Kerry a point they did not score. Mr. O Brien and his friends have accused Tipperary of being insubordinate, un-Gaelic and all that sort of thing. Do they forget when Tipperary visited Tralee twelve months ago, what treatment the Kerry men gave them on the field. Do they forget the forest of hurleys that were flourished over the heads of the Tipperary players and their friends, when ever they opened their mouths? Do they recollect the rough hustling that Mr. Edward Harrington, ex-M.P., received when endeavouring to protect the Tipperary men? Do they remember Mr. Harrington exclaiming, ‘Is this the way you are going to treat the men of gallant Tipperary?’ Are these the Gaelic ideas of Kerry, as espoused by Mr. O Brien and Co? Will Mr. O Brien or his friends tell the public when anything like that perpetuate on a stranger in Co. Tipperary? Will Mr. O Brien and his collaborators prove their accusations or apologise for making them? Until they do, I shall refuse to discuss this matter with them any further.”

 

6. Wed. 3rd Oct. – from James Fitzgerald, Hon. Sec. Rapparee Hurling Club, Dublin:

“Dear Sir, in connection with the controversy in your columns at present, relative to the disputed Inter-County Football contest between Kerry and Tipperary, which was recently played in Cork Park, allow me to refer the contending parties to rules 17 and 18 of the New Constitution of the Gaelic Athletic Association, from which it will be seen that there were no special circumstances to justify the holding at Cork of the meeting of the Central Council, at which the referee’s decision was reversed. Such meeting was therefore illegal and its proceedings null and void.

                Unless the Central Council meet at a place specified in the rules, and there abrogate the decision of the referee, the Kerry footballers are entitled to the match.

                It would be well if the present guiding stars of the GAA would devote some time to a careful study of its rules in order to prevent a repetition of such egregious blundering.”

 

7. Sat. 6th Oct. 1894 – from Mr. William O Brien, Hon. Sec. Laune Rangers GAA:

“Dear Sir, Mr. Burke, in his last letter, underrates his own capabilities of noise and obstruction when he pays me the compliment of thinking I could preside with effect over any council, which would contain even one Mr. Burke. He accuses me of ‘genius’ and ‘consummate audacity’, ‘eloquence’ and ‘rot’ and even promises me a vote for a certain position – presumably out of his appreciation for the particular one of these attributes, which in this controversy has given him some notoriety. He merely repeats his claim, without effect, for the two goals for Tipperary, about which I have given a clear and coherent explanation. I will now take up Mr. Burke’s very fair invitation ‘to discuss the issue’, or the score as given by the referee at the conclusion of the match, viz., Kerry, four points, Tipperary, two points, and then ‘see how the case would stand’. For the sake of accuracy, I will quote Mr. Burke’s questions – ‘Did Kerry not get a point in the first half-hour they did not make? Did not the referee prolong the match six minutes longer in the last half-hour, when a stronger wind was blowing with Kerry than in the first, and was not one of the points, which Kerry got credit for, made in the last half-minute of this extra-time?’ Taking this statement in its own order, I answer that in the first half the Kerry umpire claimed a point, which the Tipperary umpire would not allow. The referee, who was in a position to judge as well as either of them, allowed the score to Kerry. This made three points to Kerry, giving us the match if there were no extra-time and no point scored by us in that time. The second disputed point, and the last made in the game (as Mr. Bourke states with a correctness, lamentably rare in his statements) made during the extension of time. There is no denial that the point was really and fairly made. Mr. Bourke’s point turns on the fact of its having been made during an extension, which should not have been given by the referee. The question is, why did Mr. Carroll give it? The answer is that he allowed it on account of the time wasted by Tipperary in a dispute about a claim for a goal, said to have been made during a time, in which play was suspended. This clearly explains the second point, which Mr. Bourke lops off the Kerry score. I would like to point out, just to further Mr. Bourke’s development as special pleader for Tipperary, that in his first letter, he says the extension lasted six minutes and, in the second, puts it at four. Again, before the C.C. he insisted that Kerry made only one point and, in his letters, he generously allows us two. Further, he places Mr. Fitzpatrick in opposition to Mr. Carroll. I find that the Cork Herald, September 14, reports: – ‘Mr. Fitzpatrick, who was independent goal umpire at one end during the hour’s play, said no goal was added at that end, and no dispute occurred there,’ and so on ad nauseam.

                Your Gaelic readers will perceive that all Mr. Bourke’s claims for Tipperary and objections to Kerry depend on his opinion that Mr. Carroll is a ‘partisan of the deepest dye.’ Inexperienced young fellows, just fresh from the rough-and-tumble fringe, which bounds the Association, and who have no interest in the Association beyond their chances of local success, often think it well to make such unreasonable charges against a referee, probably in order to appease local dissatisfaction at their failure. It is a bad prospect for the GAA that men in Mr. Bourke’s position should have to come to act in the same way. It is still worse that we should have a Central Council, which temporises with persons who cannot bear to be defeated fairly, and goes on to ‘split the difference’ between teams by ordering a match to be replayed, which, it is evident, some one of the teams must have won. This is simply and plainly want of courage and justice in administering the rules of the Association, and dispensing with those rules in favour of a county, which kicks up a newspaper row, and leaving the Association afterwards to bear the injuries, which will inevitably result from the action of any county, which may be defeated in a match they were cock-sure of winning. Self-respecting and intelligent young men will surely refuse to go on a Council of such an Association, or to referee matches for those who do so.

                I will leave Mr. Bourke’s statement that the Kerry players would have used violence against Tipperary, were it not for Mr. Harrington’s intervention, to be dealt with by the Gaels who acted in official positions on that occasion.”

 

8. Sat. 6th Oct. 1894 – from Maurice Moynihan, Tralee (Former Sec. Kerry Board).

Dear Sir, I have no desire to take any part in the controversy, which is being waged in your columns over the recent inter-county football match – Kerry v Tipperary. I fancy he must be a very prejudiced Tipperary man, or Tipperary partisan, who does not realise that Kerry fairly won the match, and has given an equally decisive drubbing to Tipperary in the controversy, which has arisen over the result. However, as Mr. Bourke has thought fit, in a recent letter to your paper, to make an irrelevant reference to a match, or matches, played between two counties at Tralee last year, I feel bound to crave your indulgence for the purpose of making a few remarks. There is absolutely no truth in Mr. Bourke’s statement that the Tipperary team was badly treated in Tralee. His reference to the ‘forest of hurleys’ is a flight of fancy, which I regret to see any level-minded Gael indulge in, and his statement that Mr. Edward Harrington was hustled about for attempting to secure fair play for ‘Gallant Tipperary’ is equally devoid of foundation. I refereed the football match on the occasion, and a gentleman from Cork (Mr. Leary), I think, performed a similar duty in the hurling match. For my part, I gave every latitude to Tipperary, and acted very stringently towards my own county-men – they being on their native heath, and Tipperary having come to Tralee on our invitation. During the progress of either match I saw nothing of what Mr. Bourke describes, and evidently it has been an after-thought or perhaps, more correctly speaking, a pure invention on his part to allege anything of the kind against the Kerry-men, when I state that the teams parted in the best of terms and made themselves hoarse cheering for each other.

                It may be a good thing to be a bit clannish but, though I am proud of my native county, I confess I am not so extensively imbued with the spirit of blind partisanship as to make me traduce the character of any other county in Ireland, or dent to its sons the credit, which they may have justly earned.

                On the question of the recent match in Cork, I consider the Central Council committed an egregious blunder in ordering the teams to meet again. The members of the Central Council, who were present at the match, curious to note, voted for confirming the decision of the referee, while two gentlemen, who did not witness the match, and one (the Tipperary representative), who was immediately interested, composed the majority in reversing the decision.

                We might next expect to see beaten teams setting up an alibi, and proving to the satisfaction of a certain section of the Central Council that they were not at all present on that occasion. Such a plea of mistaken identity, if ever put forward, is just as likely to obtain recognition as the ‘affidavits’ over which Mr. O Brien has played such sad havoc with Mr. Bourke.”

“P.S. Since writing the foregoing, I have been speaking to Mr. Harrington and, though he says there were a few trivial ‘shindies’ incidental to the most friendly match, still he is prepared to make an ‘affidavit’ that he neither got hustled, saw the terrible forest of hurleys threateningly brandished over Tipperary heads or used the language attributed to him.”

 

A meeting of the Kerry Co. Board was held on Thurs. 27th Sept. for the purpose of considering the action of the Central Council in ordering a replay of the match (Kerry v Tipperary). Tom Slattery, President, occupied the chair. There were also present Messrs Denis Sheehan (Vice-President), Denis Bunyan and Dan P. Murphy (Joint-Secretaries), Pat Teahan (Laune Rangers), Jeremiah Clifford (Ballymac), D. Lynch, M.J. Flavin (Listowel) and William O Connell (Kilmoyley). Resolutions were unanimously carried declining to recognise the decision of the Central Council in ordering a replay of the match, as the meeting considered the objections made before the Central Council should not have been entertained in the absence of any representative from Kerry. That decision of the Kerry Co. Board was communicated to David Walsh, Hon. Sec. Central Council.

 

A meeting of the Cork Co. Board was held on Fri. 5th Oct. The match between Kerry and Tipperary, which had been played in Cork, and the decision of the Central Council meeting, which had taken place in Cork, were discussed. Mr. Carroll said, as he refereed the match, he firmly thought, as did thousands of people who witnessed the match, that he discharged his duties fairly and squarely. He would not take any further notice of the wild statements of Mr. Burke of Tipperary than to say that Kerry won the match as fairly as ever a match was won. Mr. Fitzpatrick said he wished to deny the statement that he had contradicted Mr. Carroll at the meeting of the Central Council. He said there was a free kick but no forty yards’ kick. It was the general opinion that Kerry had fairly won the match. Mr. Mullins and Mr. Riordan also said that Kerry had won the match in question fairly.

 

The largest and one of the most representative meetings of the Central Council for several years was held on Sunday 7th Oct. in the Clarence Hotel, Dublin. Mr. P.J. Kelly, President, occupied the chair. The match between Kerry and Tipperary was again considered and the decision of the previous meeting of the Council, to have the match played over again, was upheld.

 

The following article, taken from ‘Sport’, appeared in the Kerry Sentinel on Wed. 17th Oct: “It is very regrettable that an amicable arrangement could not be arrived at where two such undoubted props of the Association are concerned as Tipperary and Kerry. These counties, it must be said, have turned out the cream of Irish athleticism, and their physical qualities are no less distinguished than the manly and spirited manner in which every team, whether the product of the Premier or the Kingdom county, have conducted themselves while going through the trying ordeal of the battle. We would faint hope that the Kerry team will yet see their way to conform to the decision of the council. But, while stating so, I must admit that, from their point of view as well as that of many experienced Gaelic men, a very grievous injustice has been done them by the reversal of the referee’s decision.”

 

A meeting of the Kerry Co. Board was held on Sat. 20th Oct. Tom Slattery presided. Others present were Denis Bunyan (Hon. Sec.), William O Connell (Kilmoyley), Jeremiah Clifford (Ballymac) and J. McQuinn (Gortatlea). The Chairman explained that the meeting was called principally to discuss the disputed inter-county match, Kerry v Tipperary, pointing out that at the last Central Council meeting, held in Dublin – when Kerry’s objection to its previous decision was supposed to be entertained – without entering into the facts of the case in the least, it was decided to uphold its original doubtful ruling, so that Kerry got neither law nor logic for its trouble of travelling to Cork Park and beating Tipperary there by double scores. Yet, by the virtue of a few oaths and affidavits, backed up by some stupid Central Councillors, Kerry’s trouble was tossed to the winds and its scores set at nought. Mr. Slattery said, “In view of all this, and seeing that Tipperary can win any match it likes by votes and not by kicking, we will forego our right and wish them all the honour and glory that attaches to their ‘wonderfully improved’ plan of winning inter-county matches latterly.” The Chairman’s remarks were unanimously agreed to.

 

 

 

 

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On Sun. 27th May, the Sunday within the octave of Corpus Christi, the new and beautiful Church in Killorglin was the scene of a very impressive ceremony, the occasion being a procession of the Blessed Sacrament. Upwards of two hundred children took part in the procession, together with a large number of the members of the ‘League of the Cross’, attached to the confraternity of ‘Our Lady of Perpetual Succour’. The white dresses and red sashes of the girls had a very beautiful effect. The boys, too, wore red sashes, while the ‘Leaguers’ contented themselves with their medals and red rosettes. Banners representing the Sacred Heart, St. Joseph, the Blessed Virgin, St. Patrick and St. Bridget were carried in the procession. Staring at the altar rails, the processionists filed down the nave and, going twice round the church, returned again to the altar. One could not help being struck with the order and regularity, which prevailed, as well as the due decorum of the onlookers. Not the least admired were the little ‘angels’ all in white, whose duty it was to scatter the flowers and the grace and reverence with which they did their part was wonderful for children so young. The solemnity of the occasion, apart from its novelty, drew inside and round the church an immense concourse of people who, by their devotion and reverence, contributed largely to the success of the procession. The new choir, by their singing of the ‘Pange Lingua’ and the other English hymns to the Blessed Sacrament in which latter the children joined, showed training of a high-class style. On returning to the church, there was Benediction of the Most Holy Sacrament, after which all quietly retired thoroughly pleased at witnessing to grand a spectacle – if one was to judge from the joy and happiness depicted in their countenances, no doubt the result of the ‘Benediction’, in which all were participants.

 

Favoured by beautiful weather, with exceptionally calm water, and watched a by large number of spectators, the Killorglin Regatta was held on Thurs. 30th Aug., under the patronage of the Right Hon. Lord Ventry, off Ballykissane Quay, in the tidal waters of the River Laune. There was a limited programme, embracing only six races. That was the first time that the regatta had been held so close to the mouth of the river, as hitherto it was held further up, where the water was so narrow and where collisions could scarcely be avoided. The change was highly appreciable, being favourable to the competitors as well as to the onlookers. Details:

1st Race (race for Bankers, rowing three, double banked – 1st prize £4, 2nd prize £1) – 1st Steelroe (J. McKenna), 2nd Callinafercy (J. Clifford). The competing boats in that race were fishing boats, and the crews composed of fishermen, called ‘bankers’. Four boats competed, Steelroe, Callinafercy, Gurrane (M.O Sullivan) and Cromane (Denis Sullivan). It was surprising the agility with which those heavy crafts, which were never intended for racing purposes, were pulled over the two-and-a-half miles of water. From the start, it was evident that the Steelroe boat was the winner.

2nd Race (race for Bankers, rowing three, double banked – 1st prize £3, 2nd prize £1) – 1st Steelroe (J. McKenna), 2nd Callanfercy (J. Clifford). Four boats competed, as above).

3rd Race (Club Race, for six-oared boats, having their headquarters in the county, professional boats-men excluded from competing – 1st prize £6, 2nd prize £2, two-and-a half miles) – 1st Camelia, 2nd Princess May. Four boats competed, Camellia by Maybery (Lough Lane Rowing Club), Princess May by Morahan (R.I.C. Killarney), Emily by Morahan (Aghadoe Rowing Club) and The Madame by Morahan (Laune Rowing Club).

4th Race (Club race for six-oared boats, open only to properly constituted clubs having their headquarters in the county, professional boats-men excluded from competing – 1st prize £4, 2nd prize £1) – 1st The Madame (Laune Rowing Club), 2nd Emily (Aghadoe Rowing Club).

5th Race (Open six-oared boats, not canvassed or out-rigged, or having sliding seats – 1st prize £7, 2nd prize £1, two-and-a half miles race) – 1st The Madame, 2nd Camellia, 3rd Princess May.

6th Race (Four-oared boats and six-oared boats, rowing four – 1st prize £4, 2nd prize £1) – 1st Viola (Aghadoe Rowing Club), 2nd The Madame, 3rd Camellia and 4th Princess May.

A consolation race to the Laune Bridge brought the amusement to an end.

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