Four time All-Ireland Senior Football championship medallist Colm (The Gooch) Cooper visited students at Comeragh College last week.
The renowned Kerry footballer’s visit was organised by AIB Carrick-On-Suir to celebrate Comeragh College’s involvement in the Junior Achievement Programme.
The programme is a six-week course in careers skills involving the preparation of a CV, a trip to Limerick Institute of Technology and participation in mock interviews.
As well as working with their business and careers guidance teachers, students were also guided by AIB staff.
As AIB National Youth Ambassador, Colm Cooper posed for pictures with the school’s Cusack Shield winning football team and members of the girls’ football panel.
Colm then took a very enthusiastic group for a full training session and match, afterwards holding a question and answer session and signing autographs. He was very impressed with the high skills level of both boys and girls and stressed that in order to reach the highest levels in the game they need to practise daily.
During the Questions and Answers session, he was asked about his diet leading up to a big game. Colm told students the Kerry team would usually have chicken and pasta.
Asked about the Tipperary Minor footballers beating Kerry last year before going on to win the All-Ireland, he said it was a surprise last year but not this year when Tipperary repeated the win over the Kingdom.
He opined that it might affect the senior team in future years as Kerry would usually expect to promote a few of the minors to the senior team every year. Colm also told students it would be normal to feel nervous running out on Croke Park on All Ireland day but once the match starts you have to concentrate on your play and forget everything else.
When asked about the Australian Rules International games, he implied that while it was a great experience to play in Australia, it was a totally different game to Gaelic Football and he did not enjoy playing it.
Colm Cooper also spoke to fifth year students and encouraged them to build on the skills they had been learning as part of the Junior Achievement Programme.
While in the Carrick-on-Suir area, the Kerry footballer also visited Rathgormack and Clonea National Schools where he hosted training sessions with pupils at both schools.
Comeragh College wishes to thank George Walsh, Manager of AIB Carrick- on-Suir, who has played football for Waterford and is brother of Waterford hurler Brick Walsh, and Derek MacManus, student officer at the branch, for facilitating such a rewarding and fulfilling visit by the seven-times All Star on Tuesday, April 24.
Colm Cooper’s visit to Comeragh College followed hot on the heels of the school’s great victory in the final of the Cusack Shield over Presentation School Ballingarry.
Comeragh College won the closely contested match in Fethard by three points. Final score was: Comeragh College 2-10, Ballingarry 2-7.
Team: Daniel Rockett, Ray Cooke, Daniel Walsh, Billy Roche, Shane Dowley, Dean Fitzgerald, Cian Foley, Conor Murray, Eric O’Halloran, Stefan Maher, Tommy McGrath, Dean Faulkner, David Houlihan, Jack Cooke, Kyle Doherty.
Subs used: Dean Kiely, Luke power
Comeragh College also participated in the Co. Tipperary Schools Athletics competition in Templemore, fielding a team of 30 athletes.
Despite terrible weather conditions, the students gave their best, bringing home a selection of medals.
Silver medals were won by the 1st year boys minor relay team of D. Kiely, J. Walsh, C. O’Dwyer and J. Kirby, and by Teighan Quinlan in the senior girls 100m.
Teighan also brought home bronze for the intermediate long jump and Dean Kiely won bronze in the minor long jump.
Well done to Mr Williams, Terri Lonergan and all the team.