There was plenty of fun, sun and enjoyment at the second weekend of the HSE Community Games national finals which opened in AIT, Athlone on Friday, with a rousing jamboree which was enjoyed by all followed by a weekend of glorious sunshine which helped to get everybody off to a good start, especially the competitors representing County Tipperary who succeeded in winning gold medals in three events- under 12 mixed Skittles, under 16 mixed skittles and under 12 boys swimming.
Silver medals in under 13 mixed Hardcourt Tennis, under 14 and under 16 swimming and pewter medals in four events, three in the pool in individual events with the remaining set going to the Roscrea under 12 girls soccer team.
The well fancied Ballingarry u12 mixed Skittles team were defending their crown and did not let their supporters down.
They had a decisive victory over Monaghan in the semi final with a score of 383 to 186 points and had an absolutely amazing victory over Two Mile House, Kildare in the final scoring 401 points to 254.
Spectators were astonished that children of ten and eleven years old could achieve this total.
Their manager, Jesse O’Donovan remarked that adult teams would struggle to manage this while some of their supporters believe it is “all in the breeding” as past generations of the competitors have had some mighty games over the years.
This was of course the highest score recorded on the day in all of the age groups.
Team members were Daniel Lyons (Capt) Lauren Cleary, Louise Lawlor, Aaron Dunne, A.J. Dunne, Stephen Cleary and three of them are still underage for next year.
Ss Peter and Paul’s Skittles team were also very impressive in their semi final defeating Cavan by 371 points to 268 before going on to win the final by a score of 378 to 285 points.
It is wonderful to see this skilful team in action. They were never in danger of being defeated.
They have represented Tipperary on several occasions. It is a pity that some of them will be overage next year.
It was good to see the Clonmel duo of Matt and Adrian Anglim who were instrumental in getting the sport of skittles on the national programme a few years ago officiating in Athlone.
Matt declared both of the skittles teams as special many months ago. Well done to manager Mary Walsh, Sandra O’Dwyer and everybody who contributed to their victory. Gold medal winners Ben Walsh, Samantha O’Dwyer, Annie Coffey, Michael Keating and Lorraine Williams.
There was a good result for the county in the swimming events also with a total of 10 medals coming our way. Gold medal was won by Finn McGeever, Ballina in the U12 freestyle.