THE Chair of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, Councillor Barry McElduff has hosted a reception to honour the Tyrone GAA team which won the All Ireland Masters title in 2022.
Welcoming the representatives of the successful team to the Grange in Omagh, Cllr McElduff stated that the team had done themselves, their families and their County proud in winning the over-40s competition for the second year running.
Recalling their march to glory, the Chair said that after their first victory over Down, Tyrone had then got the better of Cavan in Clogher in convincing fashion thanks to an inspirational performance by Ollie McCreesh. Following that the third game was against Dublin away and the strength of the team and the desire to succeed shone through as they won that match by eight points.
Further victories over Antrim in Portglenone and Louth on the home ground in Garvaghey set up the final game against Donegal with both teams level on points at the top of the table..
Cllr McElduff told his guests: “ Donegal started out strong at home before Olie McCreesh got the team off the mark. Further points from McCreesh, Martin Grimes and Ryan McCallion brought both teams level at half time.
“ You came out strong in the second half, however, Donegal levelled the score again. With excellent teamwork and determination you fought back with four unanswered points. Donegal were as equally determined and closed the gap again to a point, however, up stepped Carl McCabe to score and the match ended with a 2 point lead with victory to Tyrone and you topped the table with 12 points.
“The victory set up a semi-final match against Clare. Tyrone had a comfortable start to the game taking a 1-07 to 0-0 lead with 3 points and a goal from Martin Grimes and further points by Ryan McCallion, Ollie McCreesh and Damien McDevitt.
“ Clare came out determined at the start of the second half, however, Tyrone reclaimed dominance in the final quarter to win 1-15 to 0-6 and earned your well deserved place in the final. The final saw Tyrone take on Dublin once again on Saturday 10 September 2022 in Balinagh, Co Cavan.
Cllr McElduff recalled the drama of that clash.
“ Dublin started strongly, however, once again, Ollie McCreesh got Tyrone off the mark and the score was level at 0-3 each. Dublin edged back, however, a brace by Stephen O’Neill gave you a 0-6 to 0-4 lead at half time.
“ O’Neill was on the scoreboard again at the start of the second half, however, Dublin fought back to close the gap to a point. Further points from McCreesh and Marty McGrath gave Tyrone a 0-9 to 0-6 lead again.
“ By the end of the third quarter, the scores were all square. With scores from Grimes and O’Neill, the match was level at 1-08 and extra time beckoned. You kept your cool and with victory within touching distance, up stepped O’Neill and John McMullan to score with the match ending 0-13 to 1-09 and victory to Tyrone.
“ This victory saw you retain the title for the second year in a row a feat which had not been achieved before.”
Cllr McElduff added that team sports require commitment to training, good communication on the pitch, team work and strong and inspirational leadership both on and off the pitch.
“ This team certainly showed these qualities in abundance to achieve success throughout the competition.
“ On behalf of Fermanagh and Omagh District Council, and on my own behalf, I would like to commend each and every player for your dedication to attend training and matches, your skills and your team ethic. It is not always easy to be able to commit so much time alongside your work and family commitments.
“ I would also like to commend Captain, Conor Gormely, and Manager, Joe Leonard, for your leadership and inspiration on and off the pitch to encourage the team and create that desire to achieve,” the Chair concluded.
This page is available to subscribers. Click here to sign in or get access.
Receive quality journalism wherever you are, on any device. Keep up to date from the comfort of your own home with a digital subscription.
Any time | Any place | Anywhere
SUBSCRIBE TO CURRENT EDITION TODAYand get access to our archive editions dating back to 2007
(CLICK ON THE TITLE BELOW TO SUBSCRIBE)