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Ballycommon

Chapter 8


A team from Ballycommon contested the 1903 championship, but fell to Lahorna De Wets in an early round. In the following year's championship, Ballycommon defeated Terryglass in a first round match at Moanafin. Templederry were their next opponents at the Nenagh Shamrocks' ground at Tyone. " The day was beautifully fine and the sod was in fine order' reported the Nenagh News of 5 February 1905. The teams were level at half-time, although Templederry appeared to have a slight edge. Ballycommon, enjoying the advantage of wind and sun in the second half, won by 2-6 to 1-5. templederry objected, a replay was ordered and Ballycommon won again. The team reached the North Final, which wasplayed at Kilbarron with Pete Carroll of Brookefield as referee. Ballycommon hurled excellently, reported the Nenagh News of 1 April 1905, but were overwhelmed by the superior de Wets.

The photograph below shows the Ballycommon team that played in the North Final of March 1905. Only six of the eighteen players were natives of this parish: rody Meara, Boolageelagh; Joe Slattery, Gorteenakilla; Jim Quinn, Gorteenakilla; Jack Ryan, Gorteenakilla; Ned Slattery, Ballycommon; Pat Fletcher, Dromineer.

There was no parish rule at the timeand it was common practice to "import" players from a distance. Ned Slattery (1877-1941), the Ballycommon publican, was the organiser of the team. Bill Gleeson of Carrigatoher was the team captain. ( If you look closely you will see the word "captain" written in Gaelic script on his jersey).

After their defeat in 1905 Ballycommon reverted to a more local selection the following year. They brought back some older players, including Ned McGrath of Dromineer and Bill (Cull) Molamphy of Ballyartella. Both of them had previously played for the Knigh team. Others who lined out for Ballycommon in 1906 included Pat Slattery, Gorteenakilla; Dan Woods, Gorteenakilla; Mick Morrissey, Ballycommon and Prospect; tom Stapleton, Ballycommon; Jim McGrath, Ballydrinan; Bill Hogan, Ballycommon; Bill Gleeson, Ballycommon; Martin Gleeson, Ballycommon. However, the team fell to Terryglass in the first roundand we do not hear of them again after that date. Like many teams of that era they blazed on the scene suddenly, then faded just as quickly.

Hurling now entered a period of decline in the parish; neither Ballycommon, Carney, nor Knigh would ever again contest the senior championship of North Tipperary. Although the founding of Killadangan in 1915 added renewed vigour, fifteen years were to elapse before the club captured its first divisional title.

Ballycommon Team 1905
ballycommon.team1905.jpg

Back (left to right) John McGrath of Youghal with hat, Jack Ryan, Gorteenakilla; Bill Herbert, Boher; Ned Slattery, Ballycommon; Martin O'Brien, Youghal; Pat Fletcher, Dromineer; Mick Toohey, Curraghtemple; Jack Hogan, Creggane; Not identified.

Middle : Frank McGrath, Youghal; Joe Slattery, Gorteenakilla; Jerry McDonnell, Ballyrusheen; Bill Gleeson, Carrigatoher; Dinny O'Brien, Newtown; Paddy O'Brien, Newtown; Jim Quinn, Gorteenakilla.

Front : John McDonnell, Ballyrusheen; Rody O'Meara, Boolageelagh; Matt Fogarty, Clareen; Jim "Fowler" O'Brien, Ballywilliam

( Photo : Courtesy of Jim Ryan, Gorteenakilla)




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