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Back in the day - Antrim's pride in Casement Park - The Irish News, Sep 6 1999

WELCOME, MR PRESIDENT...Antrim county chairman Joe O’Boyle (right) takes time out to greet the President of the GAA Joe McDonagh at the re-opening of Casement Park in Belfast yesterday

IT was a day which will live long in the memory of Antrim Gaels.

The new Casement Park resplendent before the proud gaze of some of the men who helped make the ground a reality back in the 1940s and ‘50s.

People like Sean McGettigan and former Antrim county chairman Brian Moore who deservedly took their place in the Casement royal box alongside Gerry Adams, Sinn Fein deputy mayor Marie Moore, Northern Ireland Sports Council chairman Don Allen and others.

Current Antrim chairman Joe O'Boyle mentioned many who had helped along the road to this proud day. Joe apologised to anybody deserving of a credit who he had omitted for the long list.

Ex-county chairman Oliver Kelly was perhaps the main candidate although GAA president Joe McDonagh, in the next speech, praised the contribution of the Pearse clubman and previous county secretary Gerry Barry.

The on-field action will also linger in the mind.

Terence McNaughton's look of sheer joy as he hit the late goal which somehow turned defeat into victory for Cushendall over favourites Dunloy in the Tennent's Antrim senior hurling final.

With four minutes left, three-in-a-row seeking Dunloy led 3-12 to 1-12 with victory seemingly in the bag.

But then came a controversial penalty award which Jackie Carson slammed to the net and McNaughton's moment of ecstacy.

The Antrim football final, while lacking in quality for the most part, also had a stirring finish.

St Paul's were seemingly coasting at 1-9 to 0-5 with 15 minutes left.

Cargin had been awful but a gift of a goal by substitute Raymond ‘Harry Joe' McGuckian rejuvenated the Toome men and by the time the teams reached the dressing rooms after ending up 1-11 each, they were already planning for next Saturday's replay.

Cushendall: C McNaughton, C McAllister, Ciaran McCambridge, R McNaughton (0-1, free), E McNaughton, A McAteer, K Elliot, D McKillop (0-1), K McKeegan, M McCambridge (1-1), J Carson (1-0), A Delargy (0-4, one free), Conor McCambridge (0-4, all frees), T McNaughton (1-1), F McAlister

Subs: B McNaughton (0-1) for E McNaughton.

Dunloy: S Elliott, S McIlhatton, P Molloy, S Mullan, M Molloy, Gary O'Kane, S McMullan (1-0), C Cunning (0-1), N Elliott (0-1), P McMullan, C McGuckian (1-2), L Richmond (0-2), C McGrath (1-1), Gregory O'Kane (0-5, two frees), M Curry

Subs: F McMullan for P McMullan (39 mins), A Elliott for Curry (48 mins), J Elliott for McGrath (51 mins).

Referee: Tommy McIntyre (Loughgiel).

St Paul's: S McGreevy, A Finnegan, G Finnegan, N Ward (0-1), R O'Neill, C McStravick, A Donnelly (0-1), C Murphy, P McErlean, B O'Neill (0-3), P McCaffrey (0-1), P McStravick, L McGonagle, J McManus (1-5), P Hickson

Subs: J Quinn for Donnelly (57 mins).

Cargin: P Brogan, M Logan, P Graffin, M Gribben, S Devlin, M Johnston, M McAuley, E Quinn, S McQuillan (0-2), D McPeake (0-3), C O'Neill, D Gallagher (0-3), P McCann (0-1), E McCann (0-1), K Doyle (0-1)

Subs: K McErlean for Logan (20 mins), R McGuckian (1-0) for E McCann (35 mins), N Doyle for McPeake (60 mins).

Referee: J Murray (McDermotts)

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