North Kerry Under 13 Club Blitz
The sun was shining last saturday morning as around 210 girls from eleven clubs registered for the Sandra Keane u13 blitz and when the first whistles blew it really heated up. The format was two groups of four and one group of three with everyone playing each other with the results determining whether it was a Cup, Shield or Plate semi final you qualified for.
The committee felt the pressure as the last round of league games was played and the semis were finalized and it threw up some dandy local derbies Na Gaeil v John Mitchels, Finuge/St Senans v Abbeydorney, Castleisland Desmonds v Corca Duibhne and Doora/Barefield v Kilrush to name but a few.
Doora/Barefield v Corca Duibhne
A fantastic game that was influenced by the wind, tiredness the sun and everything you could think off, the girls from the west went into an unassailable lead of 2-03 to 0-01 at half time and the cup seemed to be heading across the Blennerville bridge but hold on the tough, skillful Clare side driven on by a tigerish corner back fought back to level just before the long whistle and onto extra time where a class score from the Clare side decided it as we were setting up a shoot-out for the title.
Chloe Tormley from Barefield took the player of the game honours and well deserved, a very tired and emotional group of girls listened to the speeches and the trophies were handed over and all I could think of was how many times do Corca Duibhne have to suffer the agony of a one point final defeat, this was the fourth one I personllay had witnessed in the last couple of years.
Austin Stacks v Finuge/St Senans
In truth the semi final victory over local rivals Abbeydorney took a lot out of the Finuge girls and the Rockettes had a little bit too much for them, Rachel Ryan made a number of strong runs from midfield to set up scores and it was hard for the very young Finuge/St Senans side to compete. Having said that Stacks did not have it all their own way as the margin of victory was just four points and on speaking to their mentors afterwards they were immensely proud and happy with their charges.
What made Finuges task even harder was the wind which blew up during the game and as Stacks had the stronger footballers they found it very hard to maintain possession but to the victors the spoils and very well deserved. I was especially happy for the U12 girls in Stacks squad as they have had a traumatic season and they were joyous to walk away with the winners medal.
Ballyduff v John Mitchels
Due to the vagries of the draw Ballyduff sat and watched John Mitchels and Na Gaeil fight out a hard semi-final and this extra rest stood to them when they emerged victorious over a gallant Mitchels in the final by a goal. Not that the Mitchels gave up or anything they fought like tigers as is their want but that extra bit of energy that Ballyduff possessed meant that they could keep the pressure on the Mitchels goals and force the scores wheras Mitchels had to break out from defence and make sure that all of their limited chances counted.
It was an excited group of girls from beside the Cashen that came up to claim their spoils, Katie Dunworth won player of the game, and to be honest the clatter of iPhone cameras would blind you, Ballyduff have a great tradition and have gone through a bit of a tough time so you could not begrudge their delight.
So it is over for the year and after all the hard work by all involved it falls to me to thank all involved especially the clubs, players and parents for butying into the tournament and it is our fervant hope that all enjoyed the day to the max. Speaking for myself I was very proud of all the players whose behaviour was impeccable and they showcased all that is great about our game and it is my hope to see you all next year.
Special thanks must go to the Keane family who sat at the information table for the whole afternoon and presented all the trophies and prizes, Sandra was a lovely child and Johnny, her father, was very touched by the comemmeration of her love of football.
Specific Rules for the Under 13 Blitz Competition
• Teams will be 11 a side
• Panel of maximum 20 and unlimited substitutions
• Reduced pitch size with Juvenile goals
• One hop One solo will be strictly adhered to
• 12 teams divided into four groups of three
• Nine teams from North Kerry and three teams from outside the County
• Two league games played before lunch of 12 minutes a side
• Winners of each league will compete for Cup
• Runners up of each league will compete for Shield
• Third placed in each league will compete for Trophy
• Medals for all finalists
• Semi-Finals and Finals in the afternoon will be 15 minutes a side
• Each team will have an entry fee of €50
• Fixtures committee retain the right resolve ties – extra time will be played
• Head to Head rule will break ties in league
• Fixtures committee appoint of referees