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Ballyclare Primary School

Boys' Indoor Football Co. Final 2020

10th Mar 2020




Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Thír Eoghain held their eagerly awaited showpiece event – the annual Boys’ 5-a-side Indoor Football Final today, Tuesday 10th March, in Cookstown’s magnificent MUSA Indoor Arena. Nine schools from across the county had each won their respective heats, paving the way for their Tyrone Final appearance. This really is the pinnacle of Tyrone Indoor Gaelic Football. These teams, like the cream, certainly rose to the top.

There was a real buzz of anticipation amongst players, teachers and supporters alike. The footballing prowess on show was hugely impressive. The format of the day’s play was based on two sections (A & B) of five and four teams.

Section ‘A’ featured several big names with St. Mary's P.S. Cabragh; St. Colmcille’s P.S. Carrickmore; Sacred Heart Primary School Rock; St. Teresa's Loughmacrory, and St. Patrick’s P.S. Donaghmore in a high calibre group. This was a very closely-contested group with never too much to split the teams. Indeed, all of them played their hearts out. The schools who missed out on progressing did themselves and their schools proud. It was Donaghmore and Loughmacrory who qualified as Section ‘A’ Group Winners and Runners-Up, respectively.

            Section ‘B’ pitched Roan St. Patrick’s P.S. Eglish; St. Patrick’s P.S. Annaghmore; Drumduff P.S. and St. Lawrence's P.S. Fintona against each other in another high-quality section. A closely-fought Section underlined the tightness of these groups. Hard luck to Roan and Annaghmore who just missed out on progressing despite playing some superb stuff. As the group ended, the lads from Drumduff qualified as Section Runners-Up alongside table-toppers, Fintona.


            Our semi-finalists now prepared to do battle. First up we had our unbeaten Section ‘A’ winners, Donaghmore, against Section ‘B’ runners-up, Drumduff. It proved to be a cracking game of football, but the Drumduff lads held off a spirited Donaghmore to win by 3:06 to 3:04.

            The second semi-final between Section ‘B’ winners, Fintona and Section ‘A’ runners-up, Loughmacrory was a complete contrast. In a low-scoring affair, it was Loughmacrory who narrowly prevailed 0:02 to 0:01 to book their place in the county final alongside Drumduff. Meanwhile, Donaghmore and Fintona finished a highly creditable joint third in the county.


The scene was now set for our Tyrone Final. The capture of this prestigious Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Tyrone Boys’ Indoor Football Champions 2020 title was now up for grabs.

            The standard of football was of a high order. Goals were always going to be at a premium. The match ebbed one way and then the other. However, by the narrowest of margins a 1:03 – 0:01 victory for the talented boys from Drumduff proved enough to deprive a battling Loughmacrory team on the day. It takes two teams to make a great final, and these wonderful players from St. Teresa’s, along with their mentors Master McCullagh and Master Gallagher, should be immensely proud of their endeavours. A county Silver medal was just reward for their incredible efforts as super defending champions.


As for the victorious team, Mrs. Mary Darcy - and her triumphant Drumduff P.S. lads - can now bask in the glory of this tremendous accomplishment. The title of Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Tyrone Boys’ Indoor Football Champions 2020 is thoroughly well deserved – all the more remarkable considering this is a school with an enrolment of just 31 pupils! Quality over quantity was never proven truer. Precious boxed gold medals will forever be cherished.

Next up for Drumduff is a tilt at the Boys’ Ulster Championship on 31 March in Meadowbank Indoor Arena, Magherafelt. There is absolutely no reason why they can’t go on and win the Ulster crown. Everyone associated with Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Tyrone certainly wishes them well in their quest for further glory. Ádh mór oraibh!

                   A word of thanks to Allianz Cumann na mBunscol Tyrone officers Damian Kelly and Patrick McGivern for ensuring the smooth running of this very successful competition. Thanks, also, to Sean McCartan, Brian McGinn and Marty Devlin for their expert officiating throughout the various heats.

Finally, our appreciation goes to the friendly, efficient staff at MUSA. Bring on Ulster!!!