The morning began well. We gathered in a local hostelry and sipped hot whiskeys in front of a roaring fire.
Meanwhile, up on the large television screen, the New Zealand Haka was being drowned out by the Fields Of Athenry. The Irish team linked arms and faced down the All Blacks.
The Irish had come to play rugby and not to dance.
However, as soon as the ball was thrown in, the All Blacks began dancing to a different tune. A tune that Ireland were unable to respond to.
The Kiwis tore in to tackles and hit the rucks at speed. Precision passes were sprayed left and right as a bewildering array of attacking runners ran the Irish ragged.
Seldom has an Irish team face such an onslaught and there seemed little that they could do about it. There were missed tackles, basic knock-ons and a litany of unenforced errors as possession was coughed up far too easily.
The All Blacks were on top all over the field. It was utter rugby carnage.
"The best team probably won in the end." one aficionado reluctantly conceded.
It was the understatement of the century.
The postmortems will be long and detailed. Blame will be apportioned and excuses made. There will be recriminations and demands for heads to roll. The disappointment is great and it is understandable.
However, it may also be a time to pause and ponder on what went wrong and how it can be corrected. Perhaps we can learn something from all of this.
The 2020 Six Nations Championship starts on the 1st February. We face Scotland at home in the opening game followed by another home game against Wales. We will be away to both England and France in later rounds.. Daunting challenges all.
We will have a new manager and a new captain. Instead of looking back in anger, perhaps we should look forward with hope.
“Beidh lá eile ag an bPaorach!” as the old people used to say.
And best of luck to our departing captain, Rory Best, and our departing coach, Joe Schmidt. They gave us some great days over the last number of years.
Unfortunately, Saturday was not one of them.
We would like to thank each and everyone of you that made the day such a wonderful success. Many thanks to the volunteers who helped with stewarding, registration, ticket selling, catering, water stops, video, photography, online presence and entertainment.
A special word of thanks to the staff of Dromtrasna National School. They have embraced the Dromtrasna Challenge as their own since we started in 2014. We are blessed to have such a fantastic group of people who are always willing to help. We really appreciate your commitment to DC.
We couldn't do what we do without the support of our many sponsors. We are indebted to the generosity of these wonderful businesses and community groups. We would encourage you to support them where possible.
We had 630 participants taking to the roads of Dromtrasna yesterday. Thank you to all of you that took that step yesterday and have supported us since we started on this road in 2014. It is you, the participants, that make our event. We really appreciate your support. We are hugely proud of the growth of our event over the past six years and we look forward to developing it further into the future.
Those that placed in the 5K and 10K are detailed in the attached image as well as the raffle winners,
We will post a final figure raised in the coming weeks.
(Dromtrasna Challenge Organizing Committee)
Roy T. Bennett
DEATH: We offer our sympathy to his mother Patsy and the family of Padraig O’Cleirigh, Killarney Road whose funeral took place recently. May he rest in peace.
BEREAVEMENT MASS:. Abbeyfeale Parish Bereavement Mass will be celebrated on Friday, November 22 at 7pm. Olive Foley will speak on loss and bereavement. Names of those who have died over the year and names of people from outside the parish that you would like remembered should be submitted to the Sacristy during the coming fortnight. Tel 068/51915 during Mass times.
MEETING: A discussion on issues affecting rural West Limerick will take place at the Glórach Theatre on Wednesday November 13 at 7.30pm following presentations from Sergeant Ber Leetch Crime Prevention Officer for Co. Limerick, Ms. Deirdre Barrett who will be speaking on Family Support and Safety and Barry Carey a member of IFA’s Crime Prevention Executive. Light refreshments will be served and everyone is welcome to attend.
MICHEAL ENGLISH COMES TO CHURCH: A Christmas themed concert in the Church of the Assumption on Friday, December 6 will be headlined by country singer Micheal English and supported by the Abbeyfeale Senior Choir under the direction of Dee Dennison. The very popular Lost Souls led by Dr. Mick O’Donnell will also perform on the night. Tickets at €25 are available by ringing the dedicated ticket line on 089 4356981 or from Moss the Farmers, Ann Lyons and O’Donoghues Spar. Doors open at 7pm.
FEALESBRIDGE SOCIAL: Friday, November 22 at the Devon Inn. Tickets on sale at the creamery.
SUICIDE PREVENTION MEETING: Connecting for Life Mid-West Suicide Prevention Seminar will take place in the Longcourt House Hotel, Newcastle West on Thursday, October 24 from 7-9pm. Information contact Ciara Dempsey ( resource Officer for Suicide Prevention, Limerick Ciara.firstname.lastname@example.org or 061/461262.
FUNDRAISING DANCE: Noonans Christmas lights for charity will hold a fundraising dance in the Woodlands Hotel, Adare on Bank Holiday Monday October 28, music by Michael Collins and his band. Dancing from 9.30, raffle on night, please support.
NIGHT AT THE OSKARS: The Board of St. Ita’s Sheltered Housing are planning to launch a major fundraising campaign shortly. It is hoped to hold a public meeting to recruit volunteers from the community to make a series of short films which will then be voted upon at an awards ceremony based on the Oscar ceremonies in Los Angeles. Details will follow on how you can get involved and help protect the future of the invaluable service that is St . Ita’s Day Care Centre and Sheltered Housing.
ANNIVERSARY CELEBRATIONS: West Limerick Athletic Club came into being following a meeting at the home of Ann and the late Christy Cullinane, Killarney Road, Abbeyfeale in 1979. At that time no senior athletic club existed in West Limerick and the new club catered for athletes from Newcastle West, Abbeyfeale, Rathkeale, Dromcollogher and other parts of West Limerick. Many of the founding members were from Abbeyfeale, including Seán and the late Dee Harnett, Kilconlea Upper, Donal Harnett, Bridge Street, the late Christy Harnett, The Hill, Dan and James Harnett, Killarney Road, the Lyons brothers Noel, Maurice, John and Joseph, Dromlegach, Eamon Dalton, Purt and John Joe O’Donnell, Meenkilly, all members of West Limerick teams that won various county championships. A celebration of the founding of West Limerick A.C. takes place on Saturday, November 9 at Rathkeale House Hotel. Dinner at 7.00 p.m. Tickets €30.
CALLING ALL ABBEYFEALE PEOPLE IN LONDON: Abbeyfeale association in London are holding their annual dance on Saturday, October 26 in the Chiswick Catholic Club.
CLASSES: Some places are available on the following classes in the Further Education & Training Centre, Abbeyfeale (The Old Tech): Beginners Art Class, Beginners Upcycling Furniture, General cookery class (demonstration), Christmas cookery class (Demonstration), Christmas Arts & Crafts. If you wish to register for any of the above, call Mary in the office: 06831198.
ADULT IRISH SPEAKING CLASSES: Abbeyfeale branch of Conradh na Gaeilge are starting back the very successful Adult Irish Speaking classes, commencing on Wednesday, October 23, tosnú 7:30pm at St Ita’s Hall, Abbeyfeale. The main aim of these classes are to promote and encourage Irish Speaking in the locality from a very basic level to more advanced. We encourage anyone with an interest on brushing up on “na cúpla focal” to attend. The classes will run from Wednesday, October 23, cost €35 for 8 weeks. Mar a deireann an sean fhocal “Is fearr Gaeilge briste ná Béarla cliste”. For more information & enrolment contact Dónal on 068 31661 (between 9am & 5pm).