Author Topic: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread  (Read 86386 times)

redandblack4ever

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #75 on: July 25, 2007, 06:49:54 PM »
Looks like they have everything under control. Here's the website if you want to take a look at the plans: http://www.cyc.gaa.ie/index.html. The vast majority of the people in Chicago involved with the youth program are very dedicated and organized.

Hopefully the weather will cooperate. I think it might rain a bit on Friday, but the forecast for Saturday and Sunday looks great. High temps in the lower 80's with a breeze off Lake Michigan.

Too bad you can't make it down, Gabriel Hurl. I'm sure you'd enjoy a weekend in the Windy City.
"A nation of sheep will beget a government of wolves."Edward R. Murrow,American Jounalist,1908-1965

Gabriel_Hurl

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #76 on: July 25, 2007, 08:05:02 PM »
This is the first time we've sent kids down from Toronto (40 kids, 100 people in total)

Gabriel_Hurl

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #77 on: July 25, 2007, 10:02:42 PM »
What about theDenis Leyne memorial tournament  and the 20 doller  trips to Starbucks and no breakfast to watch the Sunday morning  matchs  , and the  ladies gaa scene , much better  than talking about action in faraway Ardboe.

The Denis Leyne tournament was held a few weeks back with Durham winning the ladies and St Mikes winning the mens - as well as a youth football exhibition game.

$20 trips to Starbucks? Why would you spend $20 on a trip to a coffee shop that doesn't show Sunday morning matches? - you have me lost me there now

The Ladies GAA Scene - the league with 5 teams that is growing all the time - the scene that provided most of the Canadian Team that won the Shield final at the World Cup in 2005 - what about it?


I see you ignored my reply in the Tyrone thread - so I'll post this in there as well

FL/MAYO

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #78 on: July 26, 2007, 04:43:33 PM »
Just thought I would post this over here as well, from todays Wall Street Journal.

PAGE ONE 
 

Hurling in America
Has a Problem --
Too Few Irishmen
The Lure of the Old Sod
And Immigration Issues
Make for a Player Shortage
By CONOR DOUGHERTY
July 26, 2007; Page A1

For five years straight, the Clan Na nGael sports club in Atlanta sent a team to the North American Hurling Championships. That ended a year ago: Try as it did, Clan Na nGael could muster only 12 players, and it takes at least 13 to make a team.

"We didn't play any competitive games last year," says Jim Whooley, vice chairman of Clan Na nGael. "We just played scrimmage games among ourselves, six on six and five on five."

Hurling -- a centuries-old sport that has elements of field hockey and lacrosse -- has an immigration problem. With the Irish economy booming and the U.S. tightening borders, Irish expatriates are returning home and fewer newcomers are taking their place.

 
The New York board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) has lost four of its eight hurling teams in the past three years. In Boston, the Wexford Hurling Club is worried it will soon lose one of its two teams. And ever since the San Jose, Calif., team folded a few years ago, Northern California's two remaining clubs have played each other, and only each other. They settle the local "championship" with a best-of-five competition. Hurling "is becoming extinct," says Tom Flynn, an Irish immigrant who started with a New Jersey team in 1954 and remains involved with the club's management.

To keep going, hurling teams enlist Irish students who come to America for the summer. Hoping to build a new generation of hurlers, they also are setting up youth leagues. And, as part of a recruiting push, they are trying to interest Americans in the sport. "American-born players must become the backbone of our clubs in the long term if the games are to survive out here," says Eamonn Gormley, a San Francisco Web-site developer and GAA member who has been trying to get hurling teams started on college campuses in Northern California.

Turning Americans on to hurling will be tough. To many Americans, hurling is just a slang term for vomiting. Once they learn that it's a sport, they often confuse it with curling, the winter Olympic sport played with brooms.

Grit and Finesse

Perhaps the greatest obstacle is that hurling -- which requires the endurance of soccer, the grit of football and the finesse of hacky sack -- is hard to play. Americans who try the sport quickly find themselves outclassed by Irishmen who have been playing since they were toddlers.

GAELIC SPORT

 
 
See three video clips on the centuries-old sport of hurling:
• What Is Hurling?
• Hurling Skills
• Hurling Rules
Source: Gaelic Athletic AssociationA hurling team has 13 or 15 players armed with wooden paddles called hurleys. Players tussle with another team over a baseball-size sphere called a siothar. There are goals at either end of the field, and teams score three points each time the siothar (pronounced "slit-ar") makes it in. A siothar that flies through uprights above the goal scores one point.

The hardest part of the game is learning to handle the hurley, which is like an extended arm, for the 60 minutes of a match. Hurlers can't throw the siothar, and they can carry it in their hands for only a few steps. So players pass the ball with a combination of open-palm slaps, kicks and -- for extra-long shots -- by tossing the siothar in the air and striking it downfield with the hurley.

When the siothar is balanced on top of the hurley, a player can run for as many steps as he likes. But that isn't easy with the opposing team throwing body checks and slashing at the siothar as if they were in a sword fight.

Brian Whitlow, an American graduate student in San Francisco, tried out for a hurling team two years ago after seeing the sport on television. It didn't go well: In practices, he rarely got the ball, and when he did he never made it more than a few steps before the ball was knocked away. After playing in one match, he was benched. He quit halfway through the season.

Mr. Whitlow now has a new strategy: With help from Mr. Gormley, he has organized a club for American players. "The idea is to get an opportunity to play in a match and kind of learn as we go," he says.

Irish games have been played in the U.S. for as long as there have been Irish immigrants. In the summer, Irish expats flock to places like Gaelic Park in New York's Bronx borough, where they cheer from the bleachers and drink beer or Magners cider over ice. The New York board of the Gaelic Athletic Association was formed in 1914, and, by the club's reckoning, it has had a hurling team ever since.

For all that time, the size and strength of U.S.-based hurling teams have been tied informally to U.S. immigration policy and the strength of the Irish economy. Until recently, the New York GAA says, its toughest recruiting period was the late 1960s and early '70s. The Immigration Act of 1965 had reduced the flow of Irish immigration.

Irish Economy

Today, there are two problems: The strong Irish economy is keeping people from emigrating or drawing them back home, while U.S. immigration laws are making life tougher for Irish who are in the U.S. illegally. Ireland's gross domestic product has grown an average of 7.2% annually for the past decade, according to the International Monetary Fund, more than twice the rate of the U.S.

There were 128,000 Irish-born residents of the U.S. in 2005, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, down from 156,000 in 2000. In 1980, there had been about 290,000.

The decline has accelerated in recent years as post-9/11 immigration reforms -- particularly a New York program to verify Social Security numbers for driver's licenses -- have made it tougher for illegal immigrants to live normal lives.

Alan Gleeson, a 28-year-old electrician who hurled in New York until last year, recently returned to County Offaly, in part because his illegal status was making it harder to live in the U.S. "You couldn't get a driver's license, so you were limited to where you could work," he says.

At its height in the 1980s, the New York board of the GAA had about 10 hurling teams. Today there are just four: Offaly, Galway, Tipperary and New Jersey/Kilkenny.

Worries Over Decline

The decline worries John Phelan. A retired accountant, he left Ireland 50 years ago and has been playing or watching hurling at Gaelic Park ever since. The league, he says, is as small as it can be: "If it goes below four, we're a dead duck."

On a recent afternoon, Mr. Phelan and two Irish friends chatted while watching New Jersey/Kilkenny face off against Galway. Before the game, Galway's manager gave his team a profanity-filled speech in which he encouraged his players to "use the timber." (Translation: Don't be gentle with the hurley.)

It would take more than a pep talk. Over the next hour, hurlers from New Jersey/Kilkenny sent shot after shot through the uprights above the goal. Mr. Flynn, the former player who has been involved with the team since the '50s, is confident it will win its third straight championship this year, but he isn't sure how much further the team can go. "The way it's going now," he says, "we will be lucky to get two more years out of hurling in New York."

Write to Conor Dougherty at conor.dougherty@wsj.com

« Last Edit: July 26, 2007, 04:51:50 PM by FL/MAYO »

TyronePhilly

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #79 on: August 07, 2007, 05:33:26 PM »
Any updates around the Country for Divisional GAA Games?

Here in Philadelphia:

The Kevin Barrys and Tír Eoghain Philadelphia have played three (3) matches in the Philadelphia Men's Intermediate Football Championship.
In Game 1, the gamed ended in a draw, level at the end of regular time.
In Game 2, Tír Eoghain Philadelphia defeated the Kevin Barrys.
Last Sunday, Tír Eoghain Philadelphia defeated the Kevin Barrys.
The series is currently 2-0-1 to Tír Eoghain,
with Game Four (4) scheduled for this coming Sunday, August 12th
and Game Five (5) scheduled for the next - Sunday, August 19th, 2007.

Men's Intermediate Football
Semi-Finals
Boston vs San Francisco
Chicago vs Philadelphia

The Young Ireland's have defeated the Kevin Barrys in three (3) straight games.
They are the Philadelphia Men's Junior "A" Football Champions. In Chicago, they are
scheduled to face off against the Junior "A" Midwest in a Quarterfinal, where the
winner will face San Francisco in the Semi-Final.

Men's Junior "A" Football
Quarter-Final
Midwest vs Philadelphia Young Ireland's
Semi-Finals
Midwest or Philadelphia Young Ireland's vs San Francisco
Boston vs Chicago

Philadelphia Saint Patrick's will represent Philadelphia in the Men's Junior "B" Football in Chicago.
Men's Junior "B" Football
Quarter-Finals
Southwest 2 vs Southeast
Southwest 1 vs San Francisco
Chicago vs Philadelphia Saint Patrick's
Boston vs Midwest


Philadelphia Éire Óg will represent Philadelphia in the Men's Junior "C" Football in Chicago.
Men's Junior "C" Football
Preliminary Round
Chicago vs Midwest 1
Southwest 1 vs Southeast 2
Quarter-Finals
Chicago or Midwest 1 vs Southwest 1 or Southeast 2
Seattle vs Midwest 2
Mid-Atlantic vs Philadelphia Éire Óg
Southwest 2 vs Southeast 1

The Final in Men's Junior "A" Hurling should come down to either the Philadelphia Brian Borus or the Philadelphia Shamrocks.
These clubs have both defeated each other leaving them 1-0 against each other. Both clubs have defeated Washington DC Gaels,
the Borus have beaten them twice and the Shamrocks have defeated them once, and travel down to the Washington DC area
this Saturday, August 11, 2007.
Men's Junior "A" Hurling
Semi-Finals
San Francisco vs Boston
Philadelphia vs Chicago
« Last Edit: August 07, 2007, 05:44:54 PM by TyronePhilly »

goal and a point

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #80 on: August 08, 2007, 09:44:54 AM »
iS Philadelphia the least competitive city in the north american board, with exception of the intermediate they seem to have a clear run to the finals. Dont think this happens in any of the other major citys.

TyronePhilly

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #81 on: August 08, 2007, 04:28:19 PM »
Philadelphia, in addition to many other cities, is struggling at the present time. Due to immigration troubles, undocumented residents of the US having trouble renewing driver's licenses or visas, others returning home to live, the older generation moving on without mentoring the younger generation in the roles of club administration, etc. In the last couple years, though, Philadelphia has seen a slight turn in the tide of immigrants, however not as many are staying on as they did in the 70s, 80s and 90s. New York is experiencing similar problems, Chicago has felt the effects, and some of the smaller cities as well.

The biggest problem, I believe, is that there are too many grades, and complacency has set-in. I understand every club has a different way of conducting business and obtaining players. Some clubs bring out players from home, some clubs prefer to have all home-based or American teams, then others have a sort of mix of the two. Our club would fall into the last category. Building a home base of Irish gentlemen who reside in our area and have become a part of our club through the Inter-County Transfer process, welcoming American Born players into the club, and then bringing out several men for the summer as Sanction players as well. A mix of players. The summer Sanction players re-ignite the fire in our club and our players ever summer. The fall and winters here tend to drive people into hibernation and every year it gets harder to bring everyone back into the fold.

With all of these grades of football and hurling, teams tend to stay at a certain grade or drop down a grade, just to try to win a North American Championship. There are Senior, Intermediate, Junior "A", Junior "B", Junior "C" and Junior "D" grades of adult football. There are Senior, Junior "A", Junior "B" and Junior "C" grades of hurling. I completely agree with having a grade of football or hurling for strictly American Born players, however, only four divisions are being held to this rule: Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia and San Francisco. Some cities are lucky to continue to field teams, and I sympathize with them. Our club was in the same boat a couple years ago. However, there are clubs in cities that just go through the motions, not promoting the GAA. Milwaukee, in particular, is one city which has done the exact opposite. They are almost all American Born and have setup a great league in their city, with a heavy emphasis on hurling.

Also, Philadelphia lost a club there two years ago to New York. They were Donegal Philadelphia and are now known as the Four Provinces of New York. They had a large group of supporters and players. Their move greatly impacted Philadelphia. Their Junior players are now back in Philadelphia playing for a newly formed club, known as Saint Patrick's. Saint Patrick's was started last year as a higher level team for the maturing youths in our division.

Croke Park officials have allocated money to the North American Board for the appointment of Development Officers in the four (4) major divisions: Boston, Chicago, Philadelphia and San Francisco. It is a cooperative plan with each division having to fund approximately a quarter of the money for the program. The program is planned for three (3) consecutive years: 2007, 2008, 2009. Hopefully, these officers can provide some insight to club officials in the US in how to properly organize our games, strengthen our clubs, teach our youth, etc.

Philadelphia's plans for their own facilities are slowly moving forward. The Philadelphia GAA own the property through a separate entity at the moment, with a handful of businessmen in our area holding the mortgage on the parcel at a generously low interest rate. The property has greater than doubled in value since it was purchased some four years ago. The Philadelphia GAA would have a significant amount of equity in the property. The people of Philadelphia want to make sure they learn from some of the mistakes made in other cities, and/or emulate their successes. As with every plan, the proper steps and financial planning must be taken to ensure the project flourishes.

Niall Quinn

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #82 on: August 16, 2007, 02:47:20 PM »
Toronto GAA - Mens Championship QF (11th August)

Ottawa WO Brampton DNF
St Vincents WO Montreal DNF
Toronto Gaels beat St Pats (around 1-10 to 1-6??)
Durham 1-8 St Mikes 0-11 (Replay Saturday 18th @ 7PM)

setting up:

Sunday 19th August

Ottawa v St Vincents
Toronto Gaels v Durham / Mikes
Back to the howling old owl in the woods, hunting the horny back toad

screenexile

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #83 on: August 16, 2007, 03:07:01 PM »
Who's the facourites for this year Quinnie?

Sounds like Mike's won't have it all their own way this year!

Niall Quinn

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #84 on: August 16, 2007, 03:13:26 PM »
Durham won the league pretty convincingly, so would likely have been many people's favourites for the Championship, but Mikes always seem to rise to the occassion and Saturday was no exception - they really should have won it, truth be told.
Ottawa are pretty weak this year so I'd expect to see Vincent's playing the winner of Mikes / Durham in the final.
Back to the howling old owl in the woods, hunting the horny back toad

screenexile

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #85 on: August 16, 2007, 03:22:01 PM »
Have Mike's got any new players in recently??

Niall Quinn

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #86 on: August 16, 2007, 03:28:04 PM »
They've a couple of summer signings over, but the team is backboned by the same guys they've had for the last 4/5 years.
I'd say the summer imports have have had less of an impact on Mikes than on the other Toronto clubs.
Back to the howling old owl in the woods, hunting the horny back toad

screenexile

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #87 on: August 16, 2007, 03:30:36 PM »
Yeah they always prided themselves on the number of homegrown players they had. I played for them 6 years ago. Still never got my medal for it (baxtards!). Are you out there at the minute? Who do you play for?

Niall Quinn

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #88 on: August 16, 2007, 03:40:23 PM »
Yeah, Mikes have done well developing a good Canadian core and their silverware haul is testament to that.
I'm playing with Durham at the minute and have been involved in the league for 6 years, so we might have crossed swords in the past!
I'd chase the Mikes on that missing medal - you'd think with so many they'd be a little less protective, eh?!
Back to the howling old owl in the woods, hunting the horny back toad

screenexile

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Re: The North American / Canada GAA and Hurling thread
« Reply #89 on: August 16, 2007, 03:56:24 PM »
I think we played Durhan in the c'ship th year I was there. We won cship after Extra time against Gaels... one of the toughest games I've ever been involved in. Some craic that year though! Your club has certainly gotten its act together since then though fair play to you!