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2nd February 2013

posted 29 Jan 2013, 15:04 by Mark Evans   [ updated 29 Jan 2013, 15:05 ]
St James’ GAA under-age club celebrated a very successful 2012 at the annual presentation night last Friday 25th January. The club welcomed Cork Senior hurlers Conor Lehane and Luke O’Farrell as well as Cork Ladies footballer Áine Hayes to St James GAA Sports Complex. MC for the night Noel O’Sullivan hosted the evening which marked the award of six different sets of medals across under-14 and under-16 codes. Prior to the Medal Presentations, all players were given a talk from special guests Conor Lehane and Luke O’Farrell while there was also an exhibition of all club jerseys going back 40 years on display.

Firstly former St James player Áine Hayes presented medals to all those involved in the magnificent under-14 Football County championship and league double winning team coached by Den White and Aidan Whelton. The first of the Midleton duo, Luke O’Farrell then presented to the under-16 hurling championship winning team trained by Diarmuid O’Donovan and Kieran Barry. This was followed by some words of guidance by Cork hurling star Conor Lehane who spoke of the importance of practicing and constantly improving ones skills as keys to success. Conor then presented to the under 14 hurling championship winners trained by Shane O’Connell and Johnny Lawless. Club patron Fr. Pat McCarthy also addressed the ceremony citing the hope that one day one or two players from St. James could be visiting other clubs donning the red jersey and presenting medals. Finally Áine Hayes presented medals to the under-16 football championship and league winners who were trained by James O’Sullivan and the evergreen Facthna O’Connor. Áine’s achievements thus far with the Cork Senior Ladies football team were also recognised with a special trophy presentation.

The Paddy O’Sullivan Memorial Trophy for most-improved player was awarded to Brian Lombard, who in a busy year donned the green and gold of St James’ for both the under-16s and minors in football and hurling.

Chairman Alec Butler also spoke on how club is looking to move forward with the ongoing development of a second pitch. He also spoke on how the underage structure will provide the backbone of the club going forward and wished everyone well for the upcoming season. There was also special mention and praise by all those who spoke, for the huge effort expended by the Underage Officers throughout 2012 - most notably Michael Kearns, Kay Oates and Charlie McPeake.