Cumann Lúthchleas Gael - Gaelic Athletic Association

Cumann Chluain Daimh - Clonduff GAA Club

Clonduff GAA Club is at the heart of the community, providing a range of Gaelic Games and Activities

Football, Camogie, Hurling, Ladies Football, Handball, Cultural & Social Activities!

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Click here to email Clonduff    Clonduff People - Past and Present

Senior Co Winners - 9 SFC - 1930, 1944, 1945, 1947, 1949, 1952, 1957, 1980, 2000, AI Football 7s 2009;
3 Senior Ladies FC - 2006, 2007, 2008; 2 Senior Camogie Championship - 2007, 2009, AI Camogie 7s Shield 2009; 2 Senior Handball Titles;
2 JHC; 41 County Scór Titles!

 

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Handball in Clonduff takes its roots from the hours spent in the "alleys" at St Colman’s College (or Violet Hill). Everyone it seemed who went to Violet Hill spent some time in the Alleys. First thing in the morning, off the bus, the mid morning break, the lunchtime break, or if one was a boarder then it was hours in the evening. The surprise is that it took so long for Handball to take root in Clonduff.

Clonduff's handball team competed in the Down Junior League from the mid 1980s and comprised such players such as Andrew Carr, Mark Matthews, Gerry McEntee, Jim Harland, Tony Wilson and Gerry Brown. Gerry McEntee and Jim were both originally from Belfast where the game was traditionally strong and they brought valuable experience to the Clonduff Handball scene.

It was during the late 1980s that the coaching began to bear fruit with Clonduff beginning to win titles in singles and doubles from U12 through to U16. Tony Wilson collected the U18 doubles title partnering Oliver Mynes from Shamrocks in the 1987/88 season.
The game got a boost in 1989 with the completion of the handball court behind Clonduff Youth Club. Esteemed players such as Billy Silcock and Stevie Madden were invited to the opening to play an exhibition match. Sean McEntee, a future President of Irish handball, presented the trophies on the day. It was a major occasion for handball in the club and could have heralded a new era but the structures within the club were not in place and consequently interest waned and the juvenile scene dissipated. Individuals though were still playing the game.
In 1992 the juvenile scene returned and Clonduff won the Co Feile na nGael U14 competition, the first time in its history that it was won by any team other than Downpatrick. That team (Damian Smyth, Tom Grant, Paul Shields and Padraig Matthews) went on to compete in the Feile in Salthill, Galway. That year, Paul Shields won an Ulster U14 doubles title playing as a member of a Downpatrick based Down select, the first juvenile Ulster Title to come to the club.

Following another slump, the game received another much-needed boost with the arrival of Des McNeil into the parish in 1998. A native of St John's, Des devoted the necessary energy into re-establishing coaching structures within the club and putting in place procedures, which would see the eventual re-opening of the handball court that had been closed for a number of years.

This saw the beginning of the most successful and prominent period in the history of the club. Des recruited lads who had previously played at underage level and those individuals who were looking for 'life after football'.

In 1999 Tony Wilson won the Down singles title with Gary Morgan taking the Down Division 2 'B' title. The same year Paul Girvan, partnering Tony Wilson, won the Ulster Junior Doubles going on to reach an All-Ireland final, losing narrowly. Tony also won the Junior singles making it a clean sweep for Clonduff at this grade. Two teams competed in the Down Division 1 League and the C team won the Division 2 title. The team consisted of Colin Shields, Gary Morgan and Paul McCusker. It was at this time that the club had its strongest playing population with Tony Wilson, Gerry McEntee, Paul Girvan, Colin Shields, Gerard McNeil, Niall Quinn, Jim Harland, Paul McCusker, Gary Morgan, John and Paul Murphy making up the senior selection.

Clonduff joined the North Ulster League at Division 2 level having secured the Down First Division title in 2001. The team consisted of Jim Harland, Gerry McEntee, Tony Wilson and Paul Girvan. This following season the Club was boosted by the addition of Dona1 Armstrong (World 'B' Singles title holder), Martin Toner from Loughmacrory in Tyrone who was teaching locally, and Paul Shields.

Paul Shields claimed the Down Singles title that year. Unfortunately Clonduff did not fulfil a number of their Ulster League fixtures for that year. This was a major blow to the club as a lot of work had gone into getting Clonduff this far. In 2003, however, Paul Shields won the Ulster Junior title in Gort na Mona..
It was these successes and renewed interest that resulted in the formation of a Clonduff Handball sub-committee in January of 2004. The committee was as follows: Paul Shields (Chairman), Des McNeil (Secretary), Colin Shields (PRO), Sean McNally and Jim Harland (Treasurer). Additional members were Gerard McNeil, Tony Wilson and Paul McCusker. It wasn't until the 2004/2005 season that Clonduff re-entered the Ulster League again at Division 2. However, this year saw a renewed impetus in Handball and more players available to play. The team won Division 2 by the slimmest of margins beating Gort na Mona 'B' into second place. The successful team was: Colin Shields, Eddie Clancy, Des McNeil, Sean McNally, and Paul Shields. 

Clonduff also achieved their first All-Ireland title this year with Des McNeil parterning Dan McCartan to win the Diamond Masters 'B' title in Mullingar -  a tremendous achievement for a club with such a small playing population!

Juvenile coaching had re-commenced in the club in February 2004 with invaluable work being done by Colin Shields, Des McNeill, Eddie Clancy and Paul Shields. Clonduff again starting competing in and winning Feile and Down Championships - the most notable of which is Shane Milligan who has won 5-in-a-row juvenile titles as of 2013. Paul Shields relinquished his Co title in 2013 which he has held for the past twelve years.

Handball is a game played in the football 'off-season' and is a fantastic way of developing a player's sharpness, fitness levels and hand/eye co-ordination. It is our oldest Gaelic Game and therefore it's continued development should be of utmost importance. Players like Paul Brady (Cavan) and Tony Healy (Cork) have shown that it offers our youth an international element. Handball is a game that is spreading internationally but unfortunately, struggling in many areas in its 'homeland'. If we, as a club, are interested in providing the appropriate facilities for our youth then handball must be viewed as an integral part of this.
In 2008 Clonduff  again won the Division II Ulster League and re-gained promotion to the elite division for the 2008/2009 season. In the Divisional Championship Final Clonduff played St. Paul’s III and were heavily handicapped to the tune of 30 points for the Belfast team but in a great team performance, Paul Shields, Eddie Clancy, Colin Shields and Sean McNally outplayed their opponents and won the title with 12 points to spare.

In 2009 Sean McNally, who has won a number of All Ireland Silver titles and competed in the World Championships became Chairman of the Down Handball Association.

Clonduff's .Juvenile Handball section expanded in the winter of 2012 when over 20 young  females joined the Handballing fraternity and great strides were made in a very short time. Clonduff girls competed in Co Championships for the first time in 2013 and also in Feile na nGael the same year.

 

SEVEN COUNTY HANDBALL TITLES FOR CLONDUFF YOUNGSTERS - 2 IN ULSTER FINALS

Clonduff youngsters AGAIN clinch SEVEN COUNTY TITLES,  equalling their 2016 haul and will represent Down in the Ulsters coming up in February - Clodagh Kelly (U12S), Ellen Shields (13S), Éveagh Kelly/Ellen McKay (U13D), Patrick Cowan (U14S), Paudie Clancy (U15S), Lauren Kane (U15S), Conor Milligan (U17S) - Great achievement! Patrick Cowan narrowly defeated in Ulster Final; Clodagh Kelly also reached Ulster Final. Many congratulations to coaches Colin Shields, Kieran Kelly, Eddie Clancy and Sean Cowan.

In early February 2017 six new Handball coaches - Sean and Patrick Cowan, Conall Gribben, Eddie Clancy and our first ever female coaches Ella McCumiskey and Tierna Savage gained their formal coaching qualifications..

Patrick Cowan (r) who was narrowly beaten in the tie break (15-11) in the U14 Ulster Final in Kingscourt Clodagh Kelly (l) found her much taller opponent a right handful in the U12 Ulster Final in Kingscourt
 

CLONDUFF BOYS MAKE HISTORY AT ALL IRELAND HANDBALL FEILE 2016!

Many Congratulations to these young lads who made Handball History in June 2016 when they annexed the All Ireland Handball Feile (U14) Div 5 title. The team (l to r) Jayme McDonald, Patrick Cowan, Padraig Clancy and Laurence Brannigan.

 

Clonduff Girls 40x20 Handball Finale

Back row (l-r) Ellen Shields, Eveagh Kelly, Ellen McKay, Orlaith McCusker, Ella McCumiskey, Aoife McCusker;

Front (l-r) Clodagh Kelly, Cara Savage, Blaithin Shields

Clonduff GAA Girls’ Handballers finished their 40x20 season with a knockout championship on Saturday 19th March with nine girls participating. In a very tight final in which Ella McCumiskey just edged out Ellen Shields 15/12.
All the girls were presented with Easter eggs after their matches.
One wall practice will happen in May in preparation for the One Wall championships.
Thanks to all the players and parents who helped make this year a successful one for the girls on the handball courts and many thanks to coach Colin Shields who has brought girls' handball to this level.

 

SEVEN COUNTY HANDBALL TITLES FOR CLONDUFF YOUNGSTERS AT START OF 2016!

The Clonduff youngsters excelled in the County Handball finals in Saval on Wednesday 27th January 2016 collecting a record six titles, one still to play and another near miss. This is testimony to the hard work put in on the courts with the coaches. It's a great way to keep fit during the winter months - We would love to see many more children and adults avail of this great wee facility in the village!
Clonduff winners:
U12 singles Ellen Shields
U13 doubles Orlaith and Aoife McCusker
U13 singles Ella McCumiskey

U13 singles Patrick Cowan

U14 Doubles Laurence Brannigan and Jayme McDonald
U16 singles Conor Milligan
U17 singles Lyndon Brown.

Ellen Shields

U12 Singles Champion

Ella McCumiskey

U13 Singles Champion

Orlaith & Aoife McCusker

U13 Doubles Champions

Patrick Cowan

U13 Champion

Conor Milligan

U16 Champion

Top: Laurence & Jayme (U14)

Bottom: Lyndon Brown (U17)

Special hard luck to Paudie Clancy  (below) who was so so close to beating Tom Savage in U14 singles final - just beat in a tie break. Best standard game of the night by far and Paudie should probably just have shaded it. A shame either player had to lose this one

 

SHANE MURRAY IS CO JUNIOR LEAGUE HANDBALL CHAMPION!

Congratulations to Shane Murray (r) who defeated Eddie McKevitt (Saval) in the Junior Handball League Final on Friday 11th December. Shane's feat is all the more remarkable in that whilst he is a dual player of Hurling and Football he just took up Handball last winter as part of the Social Handball Initiative. Shane is pictured above with Eddie.

 

CLONDUFF HANDBALL SUCCESSES 2015


The Clonduff Contingent at County Handball Awards 2015 in Clonduff Clubrooms with Guests of Honour DJ Carey and Michael 'Ducksy' Walsh

There was a full house in Clonduff Clubrooms on Saturday 27th June for the annual County Handball Awards with special guests of honour from Kilkenny DJ Carey and Michael 'Ducksy' Walsh. DJ has two World Handball titles and 40 All Ireland Hurling an Handball Awards; Ducksy has nine World and 140 All Ireland Handball titles - both men, who are still going strong gave inspirational insights to sporting careers - great role models - thanks to Down Handball for holding the Awards in Clonduff and affording Clonduff people the honour of hosting these two great legends.

Clonduff had their most successful ever year in Handball during 2015 particularly at juvenile level - the female winners are Clonduff History Makers! The recipients of Awards were as follows:

Patrick Cowan - U12 Boys 40x20 & One Wall Singles Champion
Jayme McDonald - U13 Boys 40x20 Singles Champion
Shane Close, Daire Lavery - U13 40x20 Doubles RU
Paudie Clancy - U14 40x20 Singles RU
Aodhan Quinn, Ben Magee - U14 40x20 Doubles RU
Conor Milligan - U15 40x20 & U16 One Wall Singles RU
Lyndon Brown - U16 40x20 Singles Champion
Lee Murnin - U17 40x20 & U18 One Wall Singles Champion
Ella McCumiskey - U12 Singles One Wall Champions & 40x20 RU
Orlaith & Aoife McCusker - U12 40x20 & One Wall Doubles Champions
Eve Matthews - U13 Singles 40x20 RU
Shane Murray - Jun 40x20 Singles RU
Sean McNally - One Wall Plate RU
Des McNeill - One Wall Junior Champion
Clonduff Harps - One Wall Jun League Champions - Kieran Kelly, Nigel McPolin, Conor Milligan, Lee Murnin, Jim Murnin, Conal Gribben, Des McNeill, Patrick Cowan, Sean Cowan
Clonduff Shamrocks - One Wall Jun League RU = Chris O'Hare, Shane Murray, Niall Quinn, Jayme Lynch, Eddie Clancy, Ryan McShane, Jayme McDonald
Well done everybody!

 

HANDBALL - DES McNEILL IS FIRST EVER ONE WALL COUNTY JUNIOR CHAMPION 2015

Des overcame Annie Havern in the final to become the first ever winner of this new county competition. Thanks to both players for a sporting final enjoyed by a large number of spectators. Presentations will be at the Awards night in Clonduff Clubrooms on Saturday 27th June.

 

HANDBALL – U12 Girls create history

Siblings Orlaith and Aoife McCusker and Ella McCumiskey created their own little bit of history on Sunday 14th June 2015when they outplayed their opponents in the County One Wall Finals in Downpatrick. Not only are they the first U12 girls to win County Handball titles but they are also the first ever Clonduff One Wall County Champions! Well done to you girls and to your coach Colin Shields.

The boys were not to be outdone with Lee Murnin winning the U18 Singles title – Patrick Cowan still has to play the U12 Final as he was involved in the U12 Football Tournament in Dromantine.

U12 One Wall Singles Champion Ella McCumiskey (l) Orlaith & Aoife (l) U12 One Wall Doubles Champions
 
 

CLONDUFF HARPS HANDBALLERS ARE COUNTY SOCIAL HANDBALL CHAMPIONS 2015!

Clonduff Harps are County Junior Handball Champions in this inaugural Social Handball year.
The final, played on Tuesday night 26th May was an all-Clonduff affair with Shamrocks going down 3 games to 1 in the end. A much sought-after title both teams treated the contest with genuine respect as was evident with the quality of handball played from all the Yellas on show.
In the end the Harps held all the Aces pulling away with little fuss to claim the ultimate bragging rights.
Clonduff Harps Handball Team - County Handball Champions 2015
Nigel McPolin, Kieran Kelly, Jim Murnin, Lee Murnin, Gavin McCann, Sean Cowan, Patrick Cowan, Conal Gribben, Conor Milligan, Des McNeill
Runners up - Clonduff Shamrocks Eddie Clancy, Shane Murray, Niall Quinn, Jayme Lynch, Chris O'Hare, Liam McParlan, Ryan McShane
Players from both teams are pictured above - Back row (l tor) Jayme Lynch, Eddie Clancy, Shane Murray, Niall Quinn, Nigel McPolin, Conal Gribben,  Lee Murnin, Des McNeill; Front row (l to r) Ryan McShane, Gavin McCann, Kieran Kelly, Chris O'Hare.

 

Easter Handball JUVENILE COMPETITIONS

GIRLS HANDBALL - Clonduff U14 and U12 Ladies Handballers were all presented with Easter eggs on Saturday 4th April after their coaching session in Hilltown Handball Alley. An open draw competition was held – Orlaith McCusker narrowly beat Ellen Shields in the final. Well done girls

BOYS' HANDBALL - The boys’ handballers had their annual Easter Handball night on Tuesday 31st March where Aodhan Quinn and Patrick Cowan won the overall big Easter Egg competition. However all the boys received eggs in recognition of their hard work and effort throughout the winter season representing their Club, School and indeed the County.
Handball practice will continue throughout the spring and summer season as there is the Feile and One Wall competitions coming up soon – Boys on Tuesday nights @ 7.30 and Girls at 12 noon on Saturdays.

 

ADULT WINTER HANDBALL LEAGUE - Clonduff enter two teams!

Clonduff Shamrocks Handball team: Ryan McShane, Eddie Clancy, Niall Quinn, Liam McParlan, Chris O'Hare, Shane Murray, Jamie Lynch


Clonduff Harps Handball team: Conor Milligan, Jim Murnin, Des McNeill, Lee Murnin, Gavin McCann, Kieran Kelly, Sean Cowan, Patrick Cowan

 

JUVENILE HANDBALL - FIVE COUNTY CHAMPIONS in 2015!

Clonduff Juvenile Handball Champions 2015 - Orlaith & Aoife McCusker (U12 Doubles), Lyndon Brown (U16) Lee Murnin (U17), Jayme McDonald (U13), Patrick Cowan (U12) with coach Sean Cowan

Clonduff youngsters claimed five county titles in the Juvenile County Championships. Clonduff was represented in all age grades for the boys competitions and in U12 and U13 in the girls' competitions. In 2014 we collected four titles which was a record for Clonduff but have upped the stakes in 2015. With dedication and hard work they will continue to go from strength to strength and it won't be long until they collect an Ulster title.
Well done to all involved – Players and Coaches!

 

Handball COACHING AND AWARDS 2014

Young Clonduff Handballers with Ducksie Walsh at the Coaching session in Saval

A number of young Clonduff Handballers attended a coaching session In Saval Sports and Leisure Complex also on Saturday 14th June. It was delivered by the legendary Kilkenny Handballer Michael ‘Ducksie’ Walsh who was the Guest of Honour at the County Handball Awards held in Mayobridge Club later that evening.

Awards were made to the following Clonduff Handballers:

U14 Girls Doubles Winners Erin Rafferty and Clara Cowan,
U12 Boys Singles Winner Patrick Cowan,
U13 Boys Runner Up Tom Close, 
U15 Boys Singles Winner Lyndon Brown, 
U16 Boys Singles Lee Murnin

St Patrick Primary School Children who also received awards:

Aidan Quinn, Patrick Cowan, Shane Close, Jamie McDonald

Back row: Sean Cowan, Des McNeill, Lyndon Brown, Michael 'Ducksie' Walsh, Lee Murnin, Eddie Clancy, Brendan Murray (Chairman); Front row: Eamon Brown, Charlie Brown, Patrick Cowan, Padraig Clancy, Clara Cowan

A special presentation of two Down Handball jerseys were made to Clara and Erin for reaching the Ulster Final – their jerseys were duly signed by ‘Ducksie’ (More photos on our FaceBook Page)

 

ONE WALL HANDBALL BLITZES

Eleven of the Fifteen U12 ladies Handballers participating in Saturday's (17th May) one wall blitz in Mayobridge, were from Clonduff. For most this was their first ever chance to play the one wall version of the sport. It took a little while to adjust to the different court. When they got it's measure some great handball was played. Afterwards all players were presented with a handball by County Chairman, Sean Magone, to thank them for their efforts. Ellen and Blaithin Shields, Codie Morgan, Georgia Lavery, Eveagh Kelly, Ella McCumiskey, Eve Matthews, Rosie and Orla McCann, Caoimhe Morgan and Erin Morgan.The Clonduff Girls were mentored by Colin Shields on the day.

Meanwhile the U12 boys, mentored by Eddie Clancy on the day, participated in one wall blitz in Saval - the boys also received handballs.

 

End of Season Handball Eggstrordinary Blitz!

The Clonduff boys and girls who played Handball in Clonduff Handball Alley brought their season to an end with a couple of very successful internal blitzes in the last week. Over 40 young people participated and every child received an Easter Egg courtesy of Clonduff Club and Lorraine Bloomfield.

The mentors wish to thank all the children who attended throughout the season and wish to extend their thanks to the parents who stayed to help out with supervision and transport.

Clonduff Club wishes to thank the mentors who gave their time and expertise to the young people who are the future of Handball in Clonduff. The Primary School age children are pictured below with their Easter Eggs.

 
 

Handball Feile 2014

A team of very young girls (all at Primary School) competed for the first time in the County Handball Feile (U14) in the Clonduff Court on Wednesday night 2nd April. Despite their youth they played very well and reached the semi final. The girls team was Eve Matthews, Ella McCumiskey, Caoimhe McKeown, Ellen Shields. Well done girls.

The Primary School boys played their games in Saval and they emerged champions having won all their games. The team of Champions are: Padraig Clancy, Patrick Cowan, Jayme McDonald, Eamon Brown. Well done boys!

Well done to the mentors of the boys and girls without whose dedication these things just wouldn't happen!

County PS Handball Champions 2014 - Padriag Clancy, Patrick Cowan, Jayme McDonald and Eamon Brown with organisers Tony O'Connor and Jim Cunningham Clonduff female Handballers continue to make history - first time ever Clonduff females took part in County Feile Handball - Eve Matthews, Ella McCumiskey, Caoimhe McKeown and Ellen Shields
 
 

Handball - Ulster Juvenile Finals

The Clonduff history-making girls put in a tremendous display, cheered on by the Down supporters and really put it up to their seasoned Tyrone opponents.  Alas, it wasn't to be losing both games 15-9 and 15-9.

Playing for the first time at this level Erin (left) and Clara (right) took some time to settle. However as the game progressed they began to realise that they were every bit a match for the Tyrone Champions. Exchanging service time and again, points were hard to come by but the luck more was with the Tyrone girls who won both games when our girls dropped their service shots.

Although bitterly disappointed at the final outcome, the Clonduff girls were worthy Down Champions and certainly asked questions of the now Ulster U14B Doubles Champions. Well Done Clara and Erin. 

 

FOUR COUNTY HANDBALL TITLES FOR ST PATRICK'S PRIMARY SCHOOL!

Back row (l to r): Des McNeill (School & Club Handball Coach), Shane Close, Patrick Cowan, Aidan Quinn, Paudie Harper, Mrs Cousins (School Principal), Front row (l to r): Joey O'Hare, Ellen Shields, Jamie McDonald

Many congratulations to the boys of St Patrick's Primary School who collected a massive four county primary schools titles at Saval on Saturday 1st February.
U11 Singles - Patrick Cowan
U11 Doubles - Shane Close & Joey O'Hare
U13 Singles - Padraig Clancy 
U13 Doubles - Jayme McDonald & Aidan Quinn
Congratulations to everybody - the new Handball Wall is beginning to pay dividends with Des' Thursday afternoon coaching sessions as well as the hard work in the Handball Alley. 

Young Ellen Shields (P5) was the only St Pat's girl to compete in the Schools Co Handball Championships. She reached the Semi Final of U 11 Singles which she lost on an aggregate of 2 points. This was no mean feat as she was playing much older girls and will be eligible for this age group again for the next two years.
Two girls were also entered for the Doubles but as they were awaiting Transfer Test results were unable to attend.
The Down Champions will compete in Ulster Schools competition in Donegal in two weeks time! Great achievement!

 

FOUR COUNTY HANDBALL TITLES FOR CLONDUFF YOUNGSTERS!

(L to R) Lyndon, Lee, Clonduff Chairman Brendan Murray, Erin, Clara, Patrick

This has to be one of the best ever County Championships for Clonduff Juveniles - three for the boys and one for the girls!

U12 Boys Singles - Patrick Cowan

U15 Boys Singles - Lyndon Brown

U16 Boys Singles - Lee Murnin

U14 Girls Doubles - Clara Cowan and Erin Rafferty

What a wonderful achievement! Clara and Erin have made Handball History in Clonduff by becoming the first females ever to win a Handball County title!

Hard work does pay! Well done everybody including the mentors! These young people now progress to represent Down in the Ulster Championships in two week's time! Good Luck and keep up the hard work!

History Makers Clara & Erin U14 Doubles Champions

Singles Champions Lee (U16), Patrick (U12, Lyndon (U15)

 
 

County Handball Championships 2014

The Boys

Above, left and below - the Clonduff boys who took part in the County Juvenile Handball Championships in RGU, Downpatrick on Wednesday :

Above left: Patrick Cowan (U12)

Above right: Conor Millilgan U14 Singles and Doubles

Left: Tom Close U13

Bottom left: Rory McKernan & Charlie Kerr (U13 Doubles)

Bottom right: Paudie Clancy & Jayme McDonald (U12 Doubles)

 

The Girls

Cara Doran (Downpatrick) and Eve Matthews who competed in the U12 Singles Ella McCumiskey and Ellen Shields with Cara McKervey and Eilish Murphy Downpatrick - U12 Doubles
 
 

U10 Handballers in Co Blitz

These young girls represented Clonduff Club in the U10 Handball Blitz in Saval on Saturday 27th July - (l to r) Blaithin Shields, Ellen Shields, Ella McCumiskey. Well done girls, pictured here with their handballs received for taking part!

 

New Handball Wall Nears Completion

(Left to right) Patrick Gribben, Sean Cowan and Sean Gribben put the final touches to the plastering of the gable wall at St Patrick's Primary School which will become the new outdoor Handball Wall on Monday 1st July. The marking-out will be done by Clonduff player and County Handball Chairperson Sean McNally when he returns from the All Ireland One Wall Handball Championships!  The wall will be available for the Boley Fair Tournament - hope we get the weather! Great job boys!

 

Great Night for Clonduff Handballers at County Awards

On Saturday 8th June 2013 a great crowd of Clonduff Handballers and their families gathered in Saval Sports and Leisure Centre for the Annual Presentation of awards by the Handball  County Board.

World Champion handballer Michael Finnegan (back right) presented medals to all our Juvenile winners and gave a great insight into the preparation required by any sports person to reach the top in their sport. Our Senior team also received numerous awards and the Chairman's award went to our own Colin Shields for the the work he carries out as Co PRO.

Clonduff was also highly commended and encouraged on the proposed one-wall outdoor court which they are providing at St Patrick's Primary School for the joint use by the school and club.

Above - the Clonduff juvenile medalists with Sean McNally (back left) Co Handball Chairperson who also happens to be a Clonduff Handballer, Club Juvenile coaches Sean Cowan and Colin Shields, Club Chairman Brendan Murray and Guest of Honour Michael Finnegan.

Below left are the Clonduff history-making girls team that took part in Feile for first time in 2013; Below right Colin receives his award from Sean; Michael was also presented with a gift.

Many congratulations to all our medalists – especially our juvenile boys and girls – well done.

 

Feile Skills Competitors 2013

The competitors in the Down Feils Skills Competition 2013. On the left is Tom Close (Clonduff) who came close in the final (beaten 42/37). In the centre is Down County Handball Chairperson, Sean McNally who is himself an All Ireland Handball winner representing the Clonduff Club

 

Clonduff Girls in First Ever Handball Feile Final

Clonduff Girls Handball U14 Feile Team that were runners up to Downpatrick in the 2013 Feile Final held in Clonduff Handball Court on Wednesday 8th May. The girls only started playing Handball before Christmas 2012 and this is the first time ever that there has been a girls Handball team in Feile. The team (l to r):  Clara Cowan, Erin Rafferty, Molly Brown and Cara Boden with Feile Committee member Michael Keenan who gave the girls a great commendation when presenting the medals. Well done girls!

Clonduff sent two Boys' Teams to Saval also on Wednesday night to compete in the Down U-14 Feile na nOg Handball Competitions.
Team 1 – Tom Close, Charlie Kerr, Patrick Cowan and Shay Fitzpatrick
Team 2 – Darragh Fitzpatrick, Conor Milligan, Rory McKernan and Shane Close below with Michael Keenan
Both teams played their hearts out and were very unfortunate not to have any winners on the night.
Team 1 were beaten by Downpatrick but came back strongly to beat Saval
Team 2 got to their Final and beat Warrenpoint 15/7 in game 1 but were beaten 15/4 in game 2 to lose narrowly on aggregate scores.
Tom Close came very close to winning the skills competition – 37/42. Hard luck, Tom.
Clonduff boys were the youngest teams on the night and have to be in with great chances of winning next time. Well done lads!

 

End of Season for U10 Handballers

The 'oldies' are convinced Cups ,Shields and a plethora of medals are what will trigger the desired responce and bring the best performance out in our

juveniles. Not so.    

 Maybe its the fact that Easter is just round the corner and the lure of chocolate awaits. But when Easter Eggs were up for grabs in this final session of winter handball activities the mood among these usually happy go lucky bunch of lads changed to a very mean-focused group of fiercely combative individuals. Suffice to say Game on!

With top-drawer performances from Aidan Quinn, Shane Close, Ben Magee and Ronan Mathews in the early rounds and steady assured play from Jamie McDonald, Joey O'Hare, Darragh Lavery, and the much younger Dan Rafferty questions were being ask of seasoned players like of Charlie Brown, Patrick Cowan and the oldest boy on show Oran Wilson. Great rallies and nail-biting finishes were the order of the night where most of the challenges went down to the wire.

Ultimately Handball was the winner on the night and credit goes to all the boys who displayed patience, discipline and above all a great healthy competitiveness and friendly rivalry.

All the children gratefully received Easter Eggs and were wished the best of luck with the U10s Football and Hurling season which now takes over from the winter handball practice.

Ps. Any parent wanting to continue with handball practice for their child just contact a coach for key and ball. (Report and Photo Sean Cowan)

 

Girls Handball End of Season Tournament

It was thought that the usual Wednesday night slot for the girls would be sufficient to have an informal handball competition. However, when it was announced that a very large Easter Egg was the 1st prize for the winner suddenly a very serious and determined mentality ensued. With each game going right to the wire and long rallies to determine each point, the girls really showed that the winter training had brought them on a great deal.

Eventually a winner emerged and it came from a very traditional Clonduff Family name (but perhaps not in handball). This year's Champion was none other than Molly Brown and she accepted her prize with mouth watering glee. All girls received Easter Eggs for all their efforts on the night and throughout the year (see picture below).

The games were played with a great spirit indicative of their off-court  friendships.

Well done to all the girl participating and for their commitment throughout the year. 

This was their last session until the Autumn  unless some progress can be made with the outdoor one-wall court. Until then good luck with your respective Camogie and Football season which you all are about to embark upon. The handball exercise will hopefully have kept you all in good shape for the other codes within the Clonduff Club.    

The U12 Girls are pictured above with supervisor Marie Cowan and some youthful supporters. Carol Curran and Bronagh O'Reilly also helped out with supervisory duties. The girls were expertly coached by Colin Shields assisted by Sean Cowan - thanks to everybody who has made a massive effort to bring Handball to the females of Clonduff and the young people in particular.  

 

Cumann Na Bunscoil (Primary Schools) Handball Saval Saturday 16th February 2013

Pictured above is Eamon Brown (right) who reached the Primary Schools U13 Handball Final on Saturday 16th February. Eamon was eventually defeated by Philip Doran St Patrick's Saul. The two finalists are pictured with their medals following the presentation ceremony


A big well done to all the boys and girls from St Patrick's Primary School, Hilltown (above) who played so well in the Primary Schools Handball Competition in Saval on Saturday 16th February 2013. They were a credit to themselves, their school, their parents and their coaches. The five young ladies in the group who created history by becoming the first girls from the school to participate in the Schools' Handball/

The children taking part were: Eamon Brown (U13 Singles); Patrick Cowan, Jamie McDonald, Charlie Brown (U11 Singles),  Shane Close & Joey O'Hare, Aidan Quinn & Ben Magee, Darragh Lavery & Ronan Matthews (U11 Doubles). There was no Doubles competition for the girls - all of them (some very young) competed in the U11 Singles: Ella McCumiskey, Eve Matthews, Ellen Shields, Erin Lively, Blaithin Shields 

It was a great day's competition and a wonderful experience. A lot of them will be eligible again next year.

 

Clonduff's First County Title Winner 2013

Heartiest congratulations to 16 year old Shane Milligan on once again claiming Clonduff's first title of the new year in any discipline. Shane secured the U17 Handball title in Downpatrick on Friday 18th January 2013 making this his 5th age title in a row, having won each year from U13. This is no mean feat. Shane represented Down in the Ulster Competition.

 

Clonduff Juvenile Handballers in Action

Our Juvenile Handballers gave a good account of themselves in the recent underage County Finals held in Saval Sports and Leisure Centre (January 2013).

The girls, pictured above made history for Clonduff by becoming the first females from the Club to participate competitively in Handball (l to r) Niamh Fitzpatrick and Erin Rafferty (U12 Doubles) and Clara Cowan (U12 Singles). The boys are: left: Connor Milligan (U13 Singles) and below Patrick Cowan (U12 Singles).

Photos courtesy of The Outlook Newspaper

 

 

 

JUVENILE HANDBALL FINALS 2013

The young lads, (left), represented Clonduff Handball Club in the County Competitions in Saval on Sunday 13th January 2013 are: back: Patrick Cowan and Joey O'Hare; front Conor Milligan and Darragh Lavery. Conor (U13) and Patrick (U12) won their Singles semi finals 15/2, 15/4 and 15/0, 15/2 respectively and played Downpatrick opponents in the County Final on Wednesday 16th January again in Saval Sports and Leisure Complex (See below). Joey and Darragh encountered very strong opposition in their semi final which they lost but gave a great account of themselves. Patrick, Joey and Darragh just started playing Handball back in November 2012.

 

The U12 Girls singles and Doubles Finals were also played in Saval on Wednesday night - Clara Cowan (Singles), Erin Rafferty and Niamh Fitzpatrick (Doubles) - These are Clonduff History-makers - the first ever females to participate in Handball competitions having just started training in November 2012.

 

"A great experience was had by all involved at the County Juvenile Handball Finals in Saval on Wednesday night. Alas, for the Clonduff finalists the greater experience of the opposition won through . However, the fledgling boys and girls from Clonduff will have learned from this contest.
To all who know the game of handball 'service' is key to winning especially at under age level, and the more game time one has the better one becomes at this particular skill. Service apart, much of the rallies were fairly evenly z contested and so gives the Clonduffians encouragement for future challenges. Indeed,friendships were made with the Downpatrick/Saval players and challenge matches are now being arranged. All very positive going forward.


Well done all involved and keep up that Monday and Wednesday night practice. More matches for all in near future." (Sean Cowan)

 

Photograph courtesy of 'The Outlook'

 

Heartiest Congratulations to Colin Shields and Eddie Clancy who won the Down County Intermediate Handball Doubles Final beating Ciarán Cunningham and Daniel Connolly in a close final on Saturday 15th December 2012. Final score 5/21, 21/19, 11/6 in the tiebreaker.

And then on Christmas Eve there were three very exciting Down Singles Handball Finals played in Saval with Clonduff players in two of the three finals.

In the Junior Final RGU's John Burns defeated Saval's Jarlath McCarthy 21/10, 21.19. Clonduff's Colin Shields beat Lorraine Havern 21/20, 21/10 in the Intermediate Final. Sean Digney (Saval took the Senior honours beating Clonduff's Paul Shields in a tiebreak.

Well done to the players who served up some really good handball. Many thanks also the the host club Saval and to the referees on the day.

Pictured below are the Shields Brothers - Colin extreme left and Paul extreme right with their respective opponents.

 
 

U12 Girls Handball Trail Blasers - Wednesday Nights 7-9pm

Colin Shields dropped in at the beginning of the night and gave a demonstration to both parents and children on the three main handball strokes.It then was handed over to the supervisors to take the remaining sessions and arrange practice games.

From next week onwards the girls will be divided into small groups for ease of management and to allow for adequate supervised practice sessions. Each small group will have 40 mins on court. The groups are listed below.  More parents - Mothers or Fathers or Both - are needed to help with this age group so come along on the time which best suits please.

7:00-7:40 Supervisors: Carol Magee and A.N. Other   

Ally Magee, Beth Fitzpatrick, Caitlin Harper, Ellen Lively

7:40-8:20 Supervisors: Marie Cowan and A. N. Other 

Cara Boden, Molly Brown, Clara Cowan, Niamh Fitzpatrick

8:20-9:00 Supervisors: Bronagh O'Reilly and A.N. Other

Niamh Fearon, Tiarna Mullin, Shannon O'Reilly, Erin Rafferty, Amy Lowry

Clonduff Girls take up the Handball Challenge

On Monday 12th November 2012 this group of young girls and James turned up for Handball Training. This is the U8/U10 group and their session is 6.30-7.30pm. Well done girls and James. The group includes Orla and Rosie McCann, Ella McComiskey, Eveagh and Clodagh Kelly, Ellen and Blaithin Shields. The mentors for this group are Colin Shields and Des McNeill. Parents supervision: Gavin McCann, Patrick McCumisky, Kieran kelly. 

On Wednesday 7th November Twelve U12 girls became the 'Trail Blazers' for females and Handball in the Clonduff Club. Their training continues every Wednesday from 7-9pm. U10 boys train on Monday nights from 7.30-9pm.

Below is the 7.30 to 8.15 Boys' group. Mentor Colin Shields/Des McNeill. Parents supervision: Paul Fearon, Berniece McQuaid. The children are: Rian Quinn, Enda Maginn, Shea Lowry, Sean Harper, Darragh Lavery, Lee Fearon and Aidan Quinn

This is the 8:15 to 9pm  group:

Will Kelly, Patrick Cowan, Shane Close, Joey O'Hare, Dan Rafferty, Ronan Mathews, Ben Magee. 

A good first night was had by all the handballers. Des and Colin illustrated the various techniques and had all the children attempting to strike the ball correctly. Well done everybody.

 

Clonduff Handballers in Action

Sean McNally (above with Lorraine Havern, Saval) displaying their Silver Medals won at the World Handball Championships in city West Hotel in October 2012. Below, Conor Brown and Colin Shields pictured at the County Doubles Final v Jim Cunningham and Niall McManus (Downpatrick)

 

Ellen in 'Great' Company at World Handball Championships

Young Ellen Shields, daughter of Colin and Deirdre, with Tyrone Great, Peter Canavan at the World Handball Championships last week. 

 

County Handball Awards 2012

Clonduff Handballers were well represented at the County Handball Awards Ceremony held in Downpatrick GAA Clubrooms on Friday 8th June. The awards picked up were:

Senior Singles Winner – Paul Shields                                       Runner Up – Sean McNally

Intermediate Singles Runner Up – Eddie Clancy

Senior Doubles Winners- Paul Shields and Sean McNally

U-17 Singles Winner – Rory McQuaid                                      U-16 Singles Winner – Shane Milligan

U-13 Singles Runner up – Christopher McAleavey                U-12 Singles Runner Up – Eamon Brown

U-12 Doubles Runner Up – Charlie Kerr and Jude Campbell.

The Senior Team also received their Ulster Club medals and Down League medals and Sean McNally was presented with an individual award for winning the Nationals and One Wall Silver Masters.

Well done to all concerned!

Sean McNally (and Lorraine Havern, Saval) receive their awards. Sean is Co Handball Chairperson with Fiona Shannon and Seamus Walsh - Down Co Board Chairperson Eddie Clancy receiving his award from Seamus Walsh with Fiona Shannon and other Clonduff Handballers - Sean McNally, Colin Shields and Des McNeill
 

 GAA Handball O’NEILLS All Ireland 40x20 Championships 2012

Clonduff's Sean McNally (left) played in the All Ireland Silver Masters Handball Final on Saturday 24th March against Tipperary’s Jim O’Brien.

 

It certainly has been a great twelve months for the Rostrevor native who had hoped to add the 40x20 Title to his All Ireland One Wall Championship won earlier in the year. Sean, who represents Clonduff in handball is very committed to his sport and has travelled all over Ireland and the World to represent his County.

 

Sean has recently been elected as Down GAA Handball Chairman and is very keen to promote the sport to GAA Clubs in Down. Indeed it is a tribute to the hard work being done in the County that there was a representative in the Finals this year.

 

Alas it was not to be - Sean was narrowly defeated 21-18, 21-17. But as always, Sean - there is always next year!

 

Congratulations to  Clonduff’s Sean McNally (and Saval’s Lorraine Havern) on winning Ulster Handball Awards this week.

 

Here is a list of Sean's achievements in 2011:

 

MASTERS PLAYER OF THE YEAR...   

One Wall Nationals Silver Masters Champion

Ulster 60x30 Silver Masters Champion

Ulster 40x20 Silver Masters Champion

Captain of Clonduff's Ulster Junior 40x20 Club Championship winning team

County Handball Chairperson 2011/2012

 

Clonduff Host Down Handball Awards 2011 Click to view my photos(Click photo right to view slideshow)

The Down Handball Awards for the season just ended were presented at a function in the Clonduff GAA Clubrooms on Friday night last with Martin Murphy Chairman of the down Handball committee and county Board chairman Seamus Walsh in attendance.

Other guest present included, Chris Curran GAA Handball Ireland, Charlie Shanks Irish Handball champion, Brendan Murray chairman Clonduff GAA club, Adrian Savage chairman Saval GA Club, Tom Trainor Chairman RGU, Dermot Russell Newry and Mourne Sports Development Officer Pat Power Sports Development Officer Down District Council.

Seamus Walsh congratulated the Down Handball committee on the efficient manner in which they organise their competitions, he paid tribute to the three clubs Clonduff, Downpatrick and Saval who through their efforts keep the ancient game alive. The county chairman noted the recent developments in Clonduff expressed the hope that another phase of the club development would include  Handball Courts. Mr. Murphy in his address reiterated the sentiments and suggested that given the popularity of the One Wall game the club should at least consider the provision of this facility.

This has been an eventful and successful year for Handball in the county, honours achieved were;

Special achievements;

Lorraine Havern (Saval) Provincial Junior Girl all star and US National U 19 champion.

All Ireland winners;

Lorraine Havern Ladies senior One Wall.

Provincial winners;

Anne Madine (Saval) Ladies Junior Singles, Sean McNally Clonduff Silver Masters Singles,

Ulster Club champions Clonduff, Paul Shields Colin Shields, Sean McNally Eddie Clancey Des McNeill

Ulster Div 4 Winners Saval.

Down Under Age winners;

U 12 Singles Eoin McMullen RGU Runner up Christopher McAleavey Clonduff.

U12 Doubles Ryan Sterrit Ronan Murphy RGU r- up, Conor Milligan and Jude Campbell Clonduff.

U 13 Singles, Ciarán Bagnall Saval, r-up Rian Doran RGU.

U 13 Doubles Sean Fallon Michael Havern Saval r-up Ciaran Hampton Taylor Loudan RGU.

U 14 singles John Madine Saval, r-up Michael McMahon RGU.

U 14 Doubles, Kevin Polly Hugh Dornan RGU r-up Colm McEvoy Chris McEvoy Saval.

U15 Singles Shane Milligan Clonduff r-up Daire Lacken RGU.

U 15v Doubles Ciaran Downey Rory McEvoy Saval, r-up Tom Burns Declan Fitzsimons RGU.

U 16 Singles Rory McQuaid Clonduff.

U 16 Doubles, Pat Havern Stephen Digney Saval, r-up Tiernan Curran Joe Hayes RGU.

U 17 singles Keelan Rice Saval r-up Liam Quinn RGU

U 17 Doubles Sam Burns Niall Quinn RGU r-up John Brown Eamon Grant Clonduff.

Down County winners;

Senior Singles Paul Shiels (Clonduff ) r-up Sean McNally (do)

Senior doubles, Sean Digney Marty Turley Saval, r-up Paul Shields Sean McNally.

Intermediate singles Sean McNally r-up Marty Turley.

Intermediate Doubles, Niall McManus Daniel Connolly RGU  r-up Tony O’Connor Blain Lennon RGU.

Junior Doubles; Des McNeill Eddie Clancey Clonduff., r-up, Eamon Savage Gareth Brown RGU.

Down League winners Clonduff

 

 

Clonduff Juvenile Handball Tournament Results - Finals played Monday 23rd May 2011 in Handball AlleyClick to view my photos

In May over 20 young boys, who have been training throughout the Spring took part in Clonduff's internal Tournaments for U8s, U10s and U12s. The youngsters were coached by Senior players Des McNeill and Eddie Clancy. The final results were as follows:

U - 8 Cup.     Winner - Patrick Cowan.    Runner-up - Padraig Clancy

U - 8 Plate.    Winner - Shay Morgan.     Runner-up - Shane Close

U - 10 Cup.     Winner - Tom Close.     Runner-up - Eamon Brown

U - 10 Plate.     Winner - Charlie Kerr.     Runner-up - Rory Mc Kernan

U - 12 Cup.     Winner - Lyndon Brown.     Runner-up - Conor Milligan

U -12 Plate.     Winner - Jude Campbell.     Runner-up - Lee Murnin

Click on the image (above right) to view a slideshow of the participants in the tournament and the coaches

 

Clonduff Youngsters in Primary Schools Handball Initiative

Saval Handball Club was awash with children from right across the county on Saturday past (15th January 2011), as the annual Cumann na mBunscoil county finals took place. Before Christmas the County Handball Committee decided to make the promotion of this competition there number one priority. Working closely with Cumann na mBunscoil and the three powerhouses of handball within the county, Downpatrick, Saval and Clonduff, a team set about promoting the event. These structures seemed to have worked a treat, as 41 children turned out, including twelve from Clonduff, fourteen different schools.

The Clonduff lads, pictured above with mentors Eddie Clancy and Paul Shields are: Conor Milligan, Jake Morgan, Padraig Clancy, Eamon Brown, Charlie Brown, Christopher McAleavey, Rory McKernan, Charlie Kerr, Tom Close, Jude Campbell, Shane Close and Shea Morgan.

 

Paul Brady, three times World Champion at County Handball Awards 2010

A crowd of up on one hundred people attended the County Handball Awards presentation in Saval Sports and Leisure Complex on Friday 26th February when the Achievements of the County’s three Handball Clubs – Saval, Downpatrick, and Clonduff – in 2009/10 season were marked. Clonduff had plenty to celebrate!

Shane Milligan U14 Singles Champion

Rían Branagan and Conor Brown U16 Doubles Champions

Paul Shields County Senior Champion

Paul Shields and Sean McNally Down Senior Doubles Champions

Des McNeill and Eddie Clancy Down Junior Doubles Handball Champions

Clonduff team of Paul Shields, Colin Shields, Eddie Clancy, Sean McNally and Des McNeill County Division 1 Champions

Sean McNally selected to play for Ireland at World Championships in Portland, Oregon in Silver Masters grade and selected as Ulster’s Silver Masters  
 Player of the Year and nominated for National All Star

Des, Sean and Colin were all on the County Handball Committee

Sean won Ulster 60x30 Silver Singles title

Des Won Ulster Ruby Master title

Guests of honour at the event included three-times World Senior Champion Paul Brady from Cavan, newly crowned World U17 Champion Lorraine Havern from Saval and newly elected Chairperson of County GAA Board, Seamus Walsh, Chris Curran, National Manager Irish Handball Council, Mickey Quinn, Chairperson, Ulster Council Handball, Down Handball officials, the Down players, their families and friends. A great night, which started with a buffet supper (provided by Downshire Arms Hilltown) was had by all.

Down Senior League Champions, with Paul Brady (back left) and Martin Murphy (front right) - Eddie, Sean, Paul Shields; Des, Colin, Down Senior Handball Champion Paul Shields receives his trophy from County Handball Chairman Martin Murphy

The Clonduff Juvenile and Senior Handballers who received awards at the County Handball function with World Champion Paul Brady County Junior Handball Champion Eddie Clancy with County Handball Chairman Martin Murphy and Collie Turley, Saval (left) Runner Up
 

Juvenile Co Handball Championships 2010

Clonduff competitors looking resplendent in their new strip who participated in the County Handball Finals on Sunday 24th January 2010. Clonduff collected two County titles - Shane Milligan (U14 Singles) and Conall Brown and Rian Branagan (U16 Doubles). Clonduff were unlucky in not collecting a hat trick of titles when Rory McQuaid was narrowly beaten in a tie breaker for the U15 title. Other competitors for Clonduff were Eamonn Grant (U16 Singles) and Packie O'Hagan and Conall Brown.(U-15 Doubles). This is a tremendous achievement for these young lads - last year they collected one title - Shane Milligan (U13) the first Juvenile Handball title winner for 17 years. Well done boys for the dedication to training and to your coaches, of course.
Back row (l to r) Conall Brown, Eamonn Grant, Connor Brown; Front row (l to r) Shane Milligan, Patrick O'Hagan, Rory McQuaid and Rian Branagan

 

Clonduff Handballer on Ireland Team at World Championships

Sean McNally (above) a stalwart of Clonduff Handball was selected, along with Brian Havern of Saval, for the Ireland team competing at the World Handball Championships being held in Portland, Oregon during October 2009. Sean and Brian are competing in the Silver Masters Doubles. Sean is pictured above with his Down and Ulster Silver Masters medals. (Sean and Paul Shields won 2009 Down Senior Doubles title)
After returning home Sean helped the Clonduff team win the Down County League!
 

12-year-old Shane Milligan became the first juvenile handball player to win a County Handball title in 17 years - he secured the U13 title. He is pictured left receiving his medal from Jim Cunningham (RGU Downpartick), a member of the Down Handball Board and above Shane proudly displays it for the camera.
 

This group of Clonduff Handballers won Div II of the Ulster League in 2008. The same group took the Div 1 title in the Down League in 2009. They are left to right back row: Paul Shields, Eddie Clancy, Sean McNally; front row: Des McNeill and Colin Shields.
 
Click to view my photos

Clonduff held their second annual Boley Fair Juvenile Handball Tournament on Saturday 12th July. Competitions were held for U13, U15 and U17 age groups. Competition was keen and of a very high standard, testimony to the hard work the boys have put in during the winter months and during the course of the Newry and Mourne sponsored summer camp held in the Clonduff Alley in the week prior to the the Tournament. Ten boys and three girls (unfortunately not Clonduff girls) took part in the Tournament - Clonduff lassies the Handball is open to you too! Why not give it a go!

To view a slideshow of the Tournament click on the image on the right!

 
TClick to view my photoshe North Ulster League season came to an end on Monday 15th April 2008 with the final of the Divisional Championships at St. Paul’s Belfast.
Clonduff had already won the Division II League and gained promotion to the elite division for the 2008/2009 season. In the Divisional Championship Final Clonduff played St. Paul’s III and were heavily handicapped to the tune of 30 points for the Belfast team.
Paul Shields played number 1 and was up against Aisling O’Reilly, the Irish Senior Women’s finalist (Aisling is probably the best Women's player in World Handball today). The young Belfast lady played well in the first game and Paul only pulled away to win 21-16 late on. However it was a different story in the second game when Paul played some brilliant handball and he won easily 21-3. Colin Shields and Eddie Clancy played the doubles and never really got going on their service games. The Clonduff pair went down by 21-15 and 21-15. This meant that Clonduff had to win the last singles game  by 24 points overall to take the title. Sean McNally was in very determined form and played a great passing and kill game to easily defeat his opponent 21-3, 21-3 and give the title to the Clonduff men. This rounds off a very successful year in the Ulster League for Clonduff. A big thanks to all the players above and to Des McNeill and John McAleavey who also played in the League this year. (Click on image above to view slideshow in following order - 1 Paul Shields on court, 2 Sean McNally after his title winning match, 3 Doubles pair Eddie Clancy and Colin Shields with their opponents, 4 Aisling O'Reilly and Paul Shields.
 
Clonduff Handball Club staged its first ever Tournament in conjunction with The Boley Fair on Saturday 30th June 2007. The tournament was administered by Colin Shields and Des McNeill.
Results in the finals were as follows: U12: Rory McQuaid beat John Brown; U14: Conor Brown beat Eamon Grant; U16: Patrick Matthews beat Rory McGreevy
Click here to view a slideshow of this historic occasion!
 
Clonduff will play in Div. 1 of the North Ulster League in 2005 after winning Division 2 in 2004. They eventually finished five points ahead of Belfast outfit Gort Na Mona. The Clonduff team (pictured above) was Colin Shields, Sean McNally, Paul Shields and Eddie Clancy (inset)
It is no mean achievement to gain promotion in their first season playing in this league!
   
Des McNeill and Dan McCartan, who won the 2004 All Ireland Diamond Masters 40 X 20 Doubles Final accepting new tracksuits from Eilish McParland, Canal Court Hotel, Newry prior to setting off for the Finals in Mullingar. They are pictured with Down County Chairman, Eamon O'Toole. They beat the Galway pair (Seamus O'Fatharta and Peter Mulryan - they won the first game at 18 and then demolished their opponents 21-1 in the second game.
Both men transferred to the Clonduff Club when their own club in Carryduff folded.
Des has been living in the Parish for a number of years and (with Paul Shields) has been involved in reviving the juvenile game in Clonduff - upwards on 30 youngsters, up to U16 level train at least one evening per week.
 
Winning Handballers 2001! Jerry Quinn, (County Vice Chairman and Clonduff PRO) presenting the county trophies to the County Winners. L-R Kit Finnegan (Ulster Handball Council), Paul Girvan, Jim Harland, Jerry Quinn, Gerry McEntee, Tony Wilson
 
1999 County title winners! Peter Carter (centre front) All Ireland Handball President was at the County handball presentations in Saval. Clonduff players had won their share of silverware. Front (l-r) Tony Wilson (Novic), Peter Carter, Gerry McEntee (Doubles). Back (l-r) Des McNeill (Diamond Masters), Gary Morgan (Div 2 Champion), Jim Harland (Doubles)
 
1999 - Clonduff Handball pair in All Ireland Final! Tony Wilson and Paul Girvan, the Down Champions won the Ulster title with victories over Monaghan, Derry and Antrim.  Then they beat Mayo to set up Final against the winners of Clare v Wexford.  This is groundbreaking stuff for Clonduff.  Unfortunately they lost out in Final!  They are pictured lright at a special presentation celebration in Clonduff Clubrooms - Left to Right: John McPolin (Vice Chairman) Tony, Paul and Peter McSherry (Down Handball)
 
juv handball 92.JPG (37789 bytes)

These young Clonduff lads lifted the Feile na nGael Handball Title in 1992.  They are (left to right) Damian Smith, Tom Grant, Paul Shields and Paudie Matthews.  Included in the picture are Tony Wilson (Coach), Martin Murphy (Down Handball) and Bernard McGrattan (Chairman Down Feile Committee)

 
Right - A group of winning Handballers in 1988 Front (l to r) Lorcan Mussen, Conor Donna, Conal Gribben, Gary Smyth, Damian Smyth. Back (l to r) Paul McAlinden, Seamus Morgan, Paul Shields, Maurice Quail and Eugene O'Hagan
 
Senior Handballers later 80s - Paul McGreevy, Gerard Brown, Adrian Travers and Tony Wilson
   
Mark Matthews receiving a trophy from Dan McCartan (mid 80s) - Dan later won an All Ireland Diamond Masters Doubles title for Clonduff in 2004 with Des McNeill Clonduff Handballers about 1986. Front (l-r) Tony Wilson, Andrew Carr, Adrian Travers. Back (l-r) Mark Matthews, Paul McGreevy
 

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