Background: the illustrious captain of Belgium GAA’s Mens Football A team, Eoin Sheanon, took it upon himself to rally the troops during the unexpected mid-season off-season of European football, by organising the very first Belgian Interclub League. With a wealth of players to choose from, the players were divided (very evenly*) into 4 teams: Munster and Europe; Dublin and France; Connaught, Ulster and Non-Aligned Territories; and Leinster and the Americas. Here is his account of the first fixture, on Wednesday 30 June.
The Dublin versus the West game was a real humdinger and a tale of two halves. The West dominated the first half with Giller marshalling midfield and Francis in flying form scoring three points from play. In the second half Alec and Diarmuid, with the outside of his boot, completely controlled the centre of the park. Hudson had a fantastic second half keeping Francis scoreless but despite O’Dowd keeping the scoreboard ticking over, the West needed a hero. Cometh the hour, Cometh the man, and the self described Antrim Maradona, Oliver O’Callaghan was on hand to get in between the Davide, our imported Dub who hadn’t put a foot wrong and Fergal who had been solid all evening to fist home an unlikely winner and rescue a well-deserved point for Liam-Kelly-less West. Special mention to Paul Hagan who won a heap of possession around the half forward line and Alan Rowan who really got going in the second half but Man of the Match has to go to Oliver O’Callaghan with the never-say-die attitude that earned his team the draw.
Leinster v. Munster was a scrappy affair with Munster edging it by just two points. Munster went in 5 points up at the break and looked like they were coasting. Collins hit some great points and Barrett seemed to be always in the right place at the back. Shane Griffin was keeping good tabs on Jim though and Leinster fought back gallantly with a great goal by Collie Byrne setting up a frantic final few minutes. With Leinster getting right back into it, up the field came Timmy with a fantastic goal that in the end killed off the Leinster comeback. Timmy was excellent for the 40 minutes and takes the Man of the Match.
* Editor’s note: the editor is from the Munster region. Make of it what you will.