Back in the day: The Irish News July 8 1997: Down boss Frank Dawson calls for neutral Ulster venue

DOWN hurling manager Frank Dawson believes his side’s All-Ireland hurling quarter-final at the end of this month should be played at a neutral venue in Ulster.

Down reached the quarter-final by virtue of their four point success over rivals Antrim at Casement Park on Sunday.

Now, the man who masterminded the victory believes a return to Casement for the last-eight clash would go some way towards appeasing the game in Ulster.

“There are a lot of people, not just in Down, but in Ulster, who feel let down by the fact that the Ulster champions have to play the losers of the Munster/Leinster final in the All-Ireland quarter-final,” said Dawson.

“What better way of showing Ulster hurling that it does count than to hold an All-Ireland championship clash in the province?

“There’s no reason why it can’t be played at Casement Park. It has the facilites so why not?

“For years Ulster hurling fans have had to travel south to watch their team so it would be a great change for them to play the game in Ulster.”


THE World Boxing Association have dropped former heavyweight champion Mike Tyson from their rankings, after his infamous biting of Evander Holyfield’s ears in their title bout in Las Vegas last week.

The ratings committee of the Caracas-based WBA have dropped Tyson, pointing out they must do so, because he has been suspended by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.

South African boxer Franz Botha has been promoted as the WBA’s No 1 challenger for the title.


SIXTEEN-year-old Justin Rose will become the youngest player ever to appear in the Walker Cup next month.

The Hampshire teenager was yesterday named in the 10-man Britain and Ireland side to defend the trophy against the Americans at Quaker Ridge in New York on August 9 and 10.

The match begins 10 days after his 17th birthday, which means he will be seven months younger than Ronan Rafferty was when he played in 1981.

Rose, born in South Africa, first came to national prominence at the age on 14 when he beat over 100 professionals to win a regional qualifying competition for the Open.

He was not a member of the squad named for training last season, but forced his way into contention for a place by winning the St Andrews Links Trophy in May.


CELTIC have offered to give missing Portuguese striker Jorge Cadete medical assistance in a bid to get to the root of the problems which have wrecked his pre-season build-up.

Cadete, who has been absent without leave in his native Lisbon for a week while his Celtic team mates have been training, produced proof last night that he is genuinely ill instead of simply taking a hard-line stance in his contract row with club chief Fergus McCann.

Cadete’s agent had told Celtic that the former Sporting Lisbon star was stricken with hepatitis A.

And the club has finally received a letter from Cadete’s doctor in Portugal detailing the problems which have kept him from returning to Glasgow.

Celtic’s general manager Jock Brown said: “We’ve given the letter to a translator to explain everything fully to our club doctor.

“We want to make contact with Jorge to see if we can help him in any way. Hopefully he will be able to travel here soon.”


TOWERING 14-year-old Philip McLaughlin was the ‘man-of-the-moment’ at Royal Portrush yesterday as the Carlsberg North of Ireland teed-off.

The four-handicapper from Ballyliffin carded a two-over-par 74 on the jumbo Dunluce links during his first attempt to qualify for the knockout stages.

Philip, a towering 6’2” schoolboy finished his Junior Certificate examinations at Carndonagh Community School last week, and at the weekend shot a one-over 71 at North West to be second in the club’s Open Scratch Cup.

“For that I was cut point six,” revealed Philip.

“This is my first time to play in the North of Ireland Championship and only the second time for me to play Dunluce.”

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