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Messages - Mad Mentor

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Laois / Re: The future of laois hurling
« on: March 19, 2020, 11:03:03 AM »
It's a pity to see the Feile has been cancelled this year. I know in the grand scheme of things it is not life or death, but it's like your last year as a minor - you can't repeat it. Speaking of which, I hope this year is not a wash out. A lot of time and effort has been put into our county minor hurlers and we probably have the most talented squad we have had for years.

Laois / Re: Schools/Colleges Hurling and football
« on: March 12, 2020, 09:36:52 PM »
St. Fergals junior team won against Carnew on Wednesday in the Colleges "C" hurling and are due to play the Dublin champions in the Leinster final. (Covid 19 permitting)

Laois / Re: Walsh Cup 2020
« on: January 06, 2020, 08:48:00 PM »
It's like Groundhog Day here in Laois sometimes. I took a quick look back at the Walsh Cup 2019 discussions and it wasn't very encouraging either. It was a poor display from Laois on Sunday, but it's only January. A lot of new faces, and the team played like lads who had only just met, which effectively they have. The best men on show were the established lads, Willie Dunphy, Ryan Mullanney et al, but it was valuable game time for the new arrivals. Westmeath looked a more established and confident team but when you look at who we have to come in to the team we would blow them away. Who could have guessed this time last year how the year would pan out? We have to put our faith in Eddie that he can get these lads where they need to be when it matters. The spirit he fostered in the squad was what changed things last year. The lads didn't suddenly get hugely more skilful, but they believed in themselves.
It was good to get back watching live hurling again even if the match itself was disappointing and there was a decent crowd. The new pitch in Borris was in very good condition and a credit to them, but how two intercounty teams togged out in those dressing rooms is a mystery. I presume this will be the next thing on their development list. Best of luck to the lads on Thursday night.

Laois / Re: The future of laois hurling
« on: December 14, 2019, 09:09:46 PM »
Great to see laois underage hurling panelists coming from traditional football strongholds. HOPEFULLY this can promote the game further into these areas.
On a side note has anyone heard about the minor setup these year. Has Derek McGrath been able to put his stamp on the panel or is his role simply advisory.
There is a great buzz in the minor panel and Derek McGrath is very involved. Has been at almost every training session (two to three a week ) and runs the entire session. The lads love him and he has really inspired them. There is huge potential in this panel and competition is very strong. Some of the in house training matches have been at championship pace despite the conditions and weather this time of year. There are some challenge matches coming up in the next few weeks against other county teams that will be interesting. There has been great attendance from the full panel (about forty I think). 

Laois / Re: NFL Div 2 2020
« on: December 04, 2019, 02:23:26 PM »
Extremely unfair comment to make regarding Donie Kingston. If Kingston wants to take a break from intercounty football then he deserves to do so without comments such as Batman's being thrown at him. He has played almost every year for the county since 2008. That's 11 out of 12 years of service to Laois football.

I think this article sums up why footballer with the talent of Donie Kingston might feel some disillusionment plodding along year after year with little or no chance of success. Hard to continually motivate yourself and give the time and dedication required to play at intercounty level with no meaningful end rewards.
Great article.

Laois / Re: The future of laois hurling
« on: November 25, 2019, 03:35:12 PM »
Leinster GAA are running a coaching seminar for 12-17 year olds in Football and Hurling in the National Indoor Arena in Blanchardstown next Saturday. The 4-11 one last week was excellent but poorly attended. There seem to be places available still. Details at I would recommend anyone involved in coaching to attend. It's in the NIA by the way, not the GAA centre.

Laois / Re: Laois Senior Hurling Championship 2019
« on: November 17, 2019, 11:58:23 PM »
Gutted for the lads. The quality on show from both teams was exceptional. It pains me to say it but the better team won. We failed to keep close enough tabs on Kavanagh and Doyle - not an easy task - and they got loose too many times which mainly did the damage. I think Ballyhale will have their hands full and I can't see TJ scoring 2:14 off them. The ferocity of their tackling was a big contributor today with very little room for our lads. Their ability to win the high ball was excellent. Hopefully they can now go all the way.

Laois / Re: Laois Senior Hurling Championship 2019
« on: November 16, 2019, 07:17:44 PM »
The run of minor finals and wins that Borris Kilcotton had, has only yielded one senior title so far. Rathdowney Errill by contrast, haven't won a minor for quite a while. We won the u21 a few years ago, and an u16 in 2016, but not much else. That u16 team lost out on a chance at minor when the age groups changed to the odd years, but of that squad of players, no one has yet hurled senior championship and only two have made any senior appearance. The senior squad has had no more than one or two added to it per year. There is a huge difference between minor and senior. Sometimes teams that have won all the way up through the grades just reflects the relative poor quality of the competition in that year. However this year's minor championship should be the most competitive in years, going by the same group of players from u15 two years ago.

Laois / Re: OByrne Cup 2020
« on: November 01, 2019, 04:58:43 AM »
Would be nice to see Offaly game played somewhere other than Portlaoise in December.
Agree. The Bahamas would be nice. ;D

Laois / Re: The future of laois hurling
« on: October 24, 2019, 07:31:46 PM »
Minor 2020 championship should be a cracker as long as there are none of the recent marriage of convenience style amalgamations. B/K, R/E, Portlaoise, C/B, Harps and Abbeyleix would all fancy their chances. Rosenallis and Camross won't be far behind.

Portlaoise,The Harps,Abbeyleix and Camross would be my 4  to make a semifinal in 2020

Rosenallis are my dark horse

B/K,R/E and C/B I don’t think will be in the mix as they weren’t strong this year and their u15’s did little this year also.

I completely agree with you,as regards those one year amalgamations,they shouldn’t be allowed full stop.

B/K won the u15 two years ago, comfortably beating Portlaoise in the final. R/E won the league without losing a game, and only lost to both Portlaoise and B/K in championship by a point each time. Both of these and C/B would consider themselves stronger for 2020 than 2019.

Laois / Re: The future of laois hurling
« on: October 24, 2019, 05:01:31 AM »
Minor 2020 championship should be a cracker as long as there are none of the recent marriage of convenience style amalgamations. B/K, R/E, Portlaoise, C/B, Harps and Abbeyleix would all fancy their chances. Rosenallis and Camross won't be far behind.

Laois / Re: Laois Senior Hurling Championship 2019
« on: October 09, 2019, 05:46:22 PM »
Hopefully we'll get a repeat of the classic from a few years ago.
Hopefully with a different result. ;D

Laois / Re: 2019 All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship
« on: October 01, 2019, 07:10:30 AM »
Forecast not good and football replay midweek wont help . Could be two messy encounters at the weekend unfortunately.

If that's the case then the Borris/CB game should be moved to Rathdowney on Saturday evening and just have the one game in the park on sunday. Not going to happen though
The pitch in Rathdowney is being redeveloped at the moment and won't be ready until next year.

Laois / Re: Leinster Minor Hurling 2019
« on: August 25, 2019, 03:21:24 PM »
Well from what I can gather, is that the management team opted to enter one team only in the tony Forristal (albeit with fantastic results) when this group where u14. This went against the grain of every other year when Laois sent 2 teams. I think the majority of the problem is that other chaps not involved in the click have no interest or desire to be ask in to make up the numbers in what essentially is a closed shop.

The fact that the panel has never had trials and are handpicked by the selectors in the intervening years is unbelievable. The mentors who call the shots are involved with their club teams so they never get to view other games independently.
I again reiterate the fact that Laois had only three subs last Saturday a week or two out from their important end of season tournament. Is their any other development panel in the country managed in this way. I believe that one chap playing corner forward is a back and has been playing in that position since he was small. No surprise when I heard he was from one of the selectors club.

Ditto with this years u16 team

We had 2/3 lads who we thought might be worthy of consideration,only to be told that it was a closed shop also,there’s been no trials for this group also since u14.

Unbelievable carry on

Also the 2 u15 teams were cut to 1 this year.

I’ve seen Ye hurl on numerous occasions over the last few years and I’d question who these 2/3 lads are. To say the standard is low would be an understatement. Huge numbers of players unable to perform even the most basic skills. I didn’t see any potential county players.  In fairness, maybe those lads weren’t playing on any of those nights. I’m still struggling to believe that one of the mentors actually told you it’s a closed shop.

What is really amazing is that 4or 5 of the Kilkenny team that Laois beat at u14 we’re playing in the minor final last Sunday.
     That's a bit of an unfair dig at young players Zooming Around. We need to include players from every club in our county squads. There were several lads from that u14 Laois team that played minor this year so what's your point? It's easier to play better when you have better players around you and there's a long way between u14 and u17.
    Without a doubt next year's minors will be potentially our most talented group for years, but this will be nothing to do with the county board and arguably even the management team who have been over them since u14. It may already be too late to get the best out of these lads as there has been no co-ordinated development work done in the intervening years. This year especially has been very disjointed. The minor management wanted a minor panel of thirty, so they could have fifteen v fifteen matches in training. However this meant that there were some lads in their final year minor - who weren't getting game time - or even getting on a match day panel of 24, and who felt they were only being used as training fodder. At the same time, there was a Celtic Challenge squad - also u17 - and some lads opted to "drop down" to this in order to get game time. This squad was mainly u16's and only two u17s were used on the pitch at any one time. A couple of the u16's were subsequently moved up to the minor panel to fill in for injuries. Once you had played minor you couldn't go back to Celtic Challenge. This team struggled a bit as they were predominantly up against teams where they were all u17.
     There seemed to be a big lack of coordination between the two squads and no joined up thinking as to how to get the best out of all the players available. It would appear that each management team - at all age groups - are just let get on with it as they see fit. Similarly to the club scene, it is left to parents to take on these management roles and the county board seem happy to allow this to continue. The Setanta programme seems to have disappeared. It wasn't without its flaws, but at least it gave any young lad who wanted it, a chance to be part of a bigger set up outside the club.
      The minor team management in my opinion should be co-ordinated with all the development squads below it with a chance for all players and coaches to feed into it. Everyone working to a plan and with as many players involved as possible.
      There is a temptation at every level to have a winning team, that leads to a neglect of the long term development of the county. While it is great to be competitive at the Tony Forristal, you are already down the road of picking players just to be successful in the short term. I would be far more impressed to see a big name come in to organise the overall development of players from u14 to minor.

Laois / Re: Leinster Minor Hurling 2019
« on: August 20, 2019, 06:05:23 PM »
Has the 2020 Laois Minor Hurling Management been finalised yet?

Few details to be ironed out but I think it best to not to speculate until anything is confirmed.

It's a very important appointment and i hope our hapless board get it right. Knowing them they'll probably appoint Eamon Kelly.
I presume it would be between Enda Lyons who has been manager for the last two years, or the current u16 management team of Liam Dunne, Tim Fahy and Ollie Quinlan. 

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