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First year gaelic blitz 2009-10


Sixteen teams, representing twelve schools, playing simultaneously on eight pitches... it all added up to last Thursday's first year blitz in darver. The Peace III Integration Blitz brought together young footballers from each secondary school in county Louth, and judging by the enthusiasm shown on the field it was a great success.

Among those watching the action was Tony Watene, the GAA's National Inclusion Officer, who explained the concept. 'Activities like this are intercultural activities but what we want in a few years time, is that the term minority ethnic groups will not even exist because they will all be integrated, I hate using that word, they will just be irish, which they are anyway.
'We don't want to specifically target people from different ethnic backgrounds, but you see them, you can see them out there.
'What's happening here is just kids playing sport, that' what it's about really. It's natural integration.'
The kiwi added that with the Go Games concept, it is planned that when the children reach second level education they will have learned all the basic skills naturally and will have understood all the positional play.All GAA sports are covered, including ladies football, hurling, camogie, handball and rounders; and Tony's remit also extends to player with disabilities and special needs. The National Inclusion Committee brings together the whole family of gaelic games.

Last week's 11-a-side, twelve minutes each half with no 'square' ball or penalties. Kick-outs were taken from the hand and 45s off the ground. Each tem had three games, which were started and finished by a hooter, and at the end of all each participant received a medal from Paddy McMahon, Darver Activity Centre chairman.
The blitz ran like clockwork, mainly due to the efforts of Games Development Administrator, Donal Mc Nally and Gareth Conlon, Peace III Darver Activity Centre.

Speaking on behalf of the centre, Seamus Kirk TD, was delighted that every post-primary school in the 'Wee county', from Drogheda Grammar to Bush, and all in between, were represented. He thanked all those involved, among them the coaching staff in the schools, teachers and referees. The Ceann Comhairle revealed it was planned to stage another blitz in the autumn.


The St Olivers team that represented the school in this year's blitz

First year Gaelic team 2009-10

Back row- left to right: Ms O Neill, Alexander Labour, Emmanuel Dos Santos, Olamedi, Diarmuid Mongey, Donald Nkani, Aaron Kierans, Andrew Kirk, Caoilte Hickey, Robert Guinn, Jamie Mc Quillan, Mr Bracken.

Front row: Paul Durkin, Luke Everard, Francis Adegbite, Jordan Murray, James Carolan, Shane Murray, Vasyl Chekansky, Conor Tully, Dylan O Brien, Sean Doyle, Gabby Grimberg.