President McCarron Praises Lansdowne FC, Ulster Bank League Champions 2012-13

Apr 02, 2013

© Paddy Flood
© Paddy Flood

On Saturday we achieved our ambition and were crowned Ulster Bank League Champions for 2012-13

Our crowning glory has come as a result of years of hard work. Five years ago we were unlucky to be relegated from the top flight. Who will ever forget the trauma of the last match of that season when Paddy Halpenny's and Alan Maher's men fought for their lives and gained a bonus point win against Terenure only to be thwarted by results elsewhere.

The way back started immediately but we were robbed of promotion in the last match of the following season when we lost narrowly to Trinity in a sun drenched College Park. Club men Willie Clancy and Stephen O'Connor stepped into the coaching roles and brought the club from Division 2A back into Division 1A in successive seasons. That was a wonderful achievement with Captain John (Tiger) Lyne guiding the troops on the pitch. We were back where we belonged.

Mike Ruddock and Emmett Farrell then took over as coaches with Ross being elected Captain. The next chapter in the Clubs history had started. We were competitive last season and the teams style of play brought further hope of greatness to the minds of all who watched this great team develop. An unfortunate string of injuries after Christmas that season put paid to our dream.

That dream is now a reality .... the constant factor behind the last five years has been our Director of Rugby Stephen Rooney whose dedication to Lansdowne knows no bounds. Our team managers Brian Corrigan and Paddy Gore have also been there through  disappointment and success ... Lansdowne men to the core. Mick Quinn Jnr came on board this year as Chairman of Rugby replacing the great Graham Quinn. Their enthusiasm and must do can do attitude is infectious. Butch Cassidy has recorded every match for many years and his work has been vital to the team management. Vincent Flood  as photographer provides a constant stream of photographs for the Club archives.

The players of course delivered on the pitch. They are a credit to the club and are well able to achieve more success. The medical team led by Ian Gargan worked equally hard and of course the Gym programme put in place by Dave Toomey (now in New Zealand) in the off season paid handsome dividends. The Lansdowne Ladies also deserve credit for cooking substantial dinners for the lads after training on Thursday's before league matches.

From my point of view it has been an absolute privilege to be associated with and to benefit from all the hard work of my predecessors Paddy Halpenny, John Kearney, Mark Dawson, Ciaran O'Reilly and Paddy Boylan. Thank you too to our members for supporting the team and in particular those who travelled the length and breadth of the country to drive the team on.

There are two matches left in the league against Old Belvedere and Shannon with our U21s in the final of the All Ireland Cup against either UCC or Trinity (date to be confirmed). The U21s are an integral part of the senior squad and under Declan Fassbender, Charlie Quinn and Colin Goode they provide a constant stream of top class players to the senior squad. Good luck to them and to all our teams as cup season is well and truly upon us.

Our Club is in a great place !!!

Dermot McCarron

President Lansdowne FC, Ulster Bank League Champions 2012-13


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