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The Irish News - Saturday May 22 2010: Shaky Red Hands
IN the not so distant past, a Championship match at Casement Park wouldn’t have been considered much of a test for the visiting team.
Not so tomorrow.
Next spring, Antrim and Tyrone will meet in the National League after the Saffrons continued their upswing under Liam Bradley to be promoted from Division Three, and Mickey Harte’s Red Hands won just twice in Division One to slide to relegation.
Perhaps more than anything else, tomorrow’s Ulster Championship first round match is a real test for Tyrone.
It’s a test of how much – if at all – being relegated has affected them.
Last summer they eased past Antrim in the Ulster final, eventually winning a match they dominated by six points, but a lot has changed since last July – on both sides.
Antrim went off to Tullamore to give Kerry a scare before storing momentum through the winter to propel themselves to a second successive promotion.
Tyrone went off to Croke Park to beat Kildare and get run over by Cork before collecting their usual injuries to key personnel and eventually dropping out of the top flight.
As much as tomorrow may be a test for Tyrone, it’s not all about the Red Hands.
It’s a test for Antrim too.
The Saffrons have hit their mark in just about every meaningful match they’ve played under Liam Bradley.
Antrim have developed into the position where they ask real questions of the big boys.
Tomorrow, it’s up to Tyrone to answer them.
(See tomorrow's Irish News to recall how the Ulster duel played out.)
BT Brock Cup final: St Patrick’s, Maghera 1-12 St Patrick's, Dungannon 0-8
Cassidy seals Maghera victory
A GOAL seven minutes from time by Peter Cassidy clinched the BT Brock Cup for St Patrick’s, Maghera in an excellent final at Moneymore yesterday afternoon.
In a very tight game, they had edged ahead of St Patrick’s, Dungannon, 0-12 to 0-8, despite playing against the breeze in the second half, when Conor Convery and Stephen O’Hara combined to leave Cassidy, the son of Derry senior manager Damien, with an empty net.
In the opening half, Dungannon, like their opponents, played their best football against the breeze.
Their 0-3 to 0-1 early lead was pegged back by Gerard Bradley scores, but points from Ruairi McGlone and Shea Hamill opened up a gap once more.
Bradley responded with three more points and Paul Gunning’s effort made it 0-8 to 0-7 in Maghera’s favour at the break. Jake Ferguson floated over a free for Dungannon five minutes into the second half to tie the game.
However, after James Kearney and McGlone had swapped points, scoring dried up for the east Tyrone side while Maghera hit four unanswered points from Convery (2), Bradley and O’Hara.
St Patrick’s, Maghera: S McGuigan; S Coyle, N Gorman, C O’Doherty; C Gallagher, C Carville, J Kearney (0-1 free); N McNicholl, S O’Hara (0-1); G Bradley (0-6, 0-3 frees), D McFaul, Padraig Cassidy; P Gunning (0-2), Peter Cassidy (1-0), C Convery (0-2, 0-1 free).
Sub: N Toner for D McFaul (50).
St Patrick’s, Dungannon: D Martin;JMurphy, P McKenna, F McGarrity; M O’Neill, T Fee, J Campbell; J Ferguson (0-1), R McGlone (0-2); T Jordan, S Hamill (0-2), C Mallon; P Donnelly, D Quinn (0-1), S McGrath (0-2).
Sub: M Lynn for P Jordan (28).
Danny Tiatto (soccer) - former Manchester City and Australia midfielder, born 1973.
Lee Hughes (soccer) - former West Brom and Coventry striker, born 1976.
Jurgen Melzer (tennis) - Wimbledon and US Open men's doubles winner from Austria, born 1981.
Matt Jarvis (soccer) - former Norwich winger now at Woking, born 1986.
Novak Djokovic (tennis) - Serbia's world number one who has won 17 Grand Slam singles titles, born 1987.
Arturo Vidal (soccer) - Barcelona and Chile midfielder, born 1987.
1. Which manager has overseen more Celtic games: Martin O'Neill or Neil Lennon?
2. Which four countries have led the World Rugby Rankings since 2019?
3. Which club is the most successful in America's Major League Soccer (MLS) history, having won the cup five times?
4. Former England goalkeeper Tim Flowers began his senior career at which club?
5. What was the first year of the Ryder Cup?
6. Which nickname links a basketball team in Sacramento and an ice hockey team in Los Angeles?
7. Which grand slam title did Pete Sampras fail to win in his career?
8. What type of Tour de France stage is known locally as contre-la-montre?
9. Name the only Polish driver to have started a Formula 1 race.
10. Which is the only French club to have won football's European Cup?
(See quiz answers at bottom)
ON THIS DAY
1946: Manchester United great George Best was born in Belfast. Best won the European Cup with United in 1968 and was voted European Footballer of the Year later that same year. He died in 2005 after a long battle with alcohol addiction.
1946: Howard Kendall was born. Kendall managed Everton in three different spells, winning two league championships and an FA Cup. He died in 2015.
1990: Wembley staged its first game since being converted to an all-seater stadium as Uruguay beat England in a friendly.
1996: Juventus beat Ajax on penalties to win the Champions League final in Rome.
1999: Newly-crowned Premier League champions Manchester United beat Newcastle 2-0 in the FA Cup final at Wembley. They went on to win the Champions League final against Bayern Munich four days later to complete an unprecedented treble.
2005: Rangers claimed the Scottish Premier League title in the most sensational fashion. The Gers defeated Hibernian at Easter Road but the Ibrox club were helped to the title as Motherwell stunned Celtic with a 2-1 triumph at Fir Park, with Scott McDonald scoring twice in the last two minutes.
2010: Blackpool twice came from behind to beat Cardiff 3-2 in the Coca-Cola Championship play-off final, securing promotion to the Barclays Premier League.
2011: Manager Carlo Ancelotti was sacked by Chelsea shortly after their season-ending 1-0 defeat at Everton.
2013: Sergio Garcia escaped punishment for what could be construed as a racist remark about "serving fried chicken" to Tiger Woods after offering an unreserved apology for his "stupid and out-of-place" comments at the European Tour's annual awards ceremony.
2017: Watford announced the impending departure of manager Walter Mazzarri at the end of the season.
2018: Harry Kane was named as the England captain for the World Cup finals in Russia.
2019: FIFA announced the 2022 World Cup in Qatar would take place with 32 teams.
QUICK QUIZ answers: 1. Neil Lennon (294 to 282); 2. Wales, New Zealand, Ireland and South Africa; 3. LA Galaxy; 4. Wolves; 5. 1927; 6. Kings; 7. French Open; 8 Time trial; 9. Robert Kubica; 10. Marseille