People Platform – June 2nd


Reader’s response: Basketball ‘high points’ in Roscommon over the years

We received a letter from ‘B. Hyland’ in which our correspondent responds to a recent article by People reporter Dan Dooner on the subject of the sport of basketball.

  “Dear Editor, It’s always good to see the sport of basketball getting coverage in the media. A case in point is the piece in your May 5, 2017 issue which refers to Western Warriors becoming champions in the 2017 Longleitros League and the All-Ireland titles won by Castlerea Community School girls’ teams in this year’s U-16 C Schools’ Cup and U-16 C Girls’ League (and since then in the U-15 C competition).    

  However, if your writer, Dan Dooner, is going to comment on the sport in the context of the game ‘developing in the region’ and ‘the emergence of different sports’, his readers might be interested to know about the long tradition of basketball success Roscommon teams have had at national and international level.

  The All-Ireland titles won in recent years by different schools in the county have been preceded by national titles for Roscommon teams as far back as the 1940s. In addition, several Co. Roscommon players have been selected over the years to play for Ireland at different levels and for the Irish Olympic team.

  Taking the Castlerea area alone, for instance, in 1946 the Castlerea LDF (Local Defence Forces) team were All-Ireland Inter Club Basketball Champions. In 1976, the Cadette (U-16) girls’ team from the Castlerea Convent of Mercy Secondary School won the All-Ireland FISEC Games A Championship and then went on to represent the country and win the European title in the European FISEC A Games,  a feat which, I believe, remains unmatched by any school in the county.

  The year prior to that, the majority of the players on that winning team had been part of the Ballintubber Community Games U-16 team that won the national title in 1975. In 1976 also, two of the European Champions team members were selected as U-16 Irish Internationals for that season.

  Basketball is not an ‘emerging’ or ‘developing’ sport in Co. Roscommon. Basketball enthusiasts can only but be happy to see how the long and well established tradition of the sport in the county is continuing. Highly successful teams and talented individual players emerge from time to time and teams continue to strive to achieve the highest possible success at whatever level of competition they are participating in. They are wished the very best in their endeavours.   Yours sincerely, B. Hyland”


Readers invited to support monument to Morley and Byrne

The committee organising a most deserving tribute to murdered Gardai John Morley and Henry Byrne have been in contact with the Roscommon People to update readers on the project.

  It has been decided that a monument will be erected at Shannon’s Cross, Loughglynn, as a lasting memorial to the two men.  

  This is the location at which Detective Garda Morley and Garda Byrne were fatally wounded after a bank robbery in Ballaghaderreen on the 7th of July, 1980.  

  Members of the public are invited to contribute to a fund which has been set up. An account has been opened in the Bank of Ireland in Castlerea (Account no. 37465549; BIC BOFIIE2D; IBAN IE 66 BOFI 90 53 52 37465549).

  There are plans for a book to be launched in conjunction with the unveiling of the monument, which is scheduled to happen on 28th of July next. Anyone who has memories of that tragic day which they would like to share in the book can submit an article by June 15th next. For more information, please call Brendan on 086-6097200.