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Posts Tagged ‘ Galway ’

European Rugby – Three From Four Ain’t Bad

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Mixed, is there any other word for that opening weekend? A classic Munster performance, from a new Munster side. A near all time best from Connacht. Gusto without result from Ulster. And such muddling from Leinster. Yep, it’s gonna be a long season.

Munster got the ball rolling early on Sunday with their clash against Sale. Nobody could really call what shape Sale would show up in but in a pool including Clermont and Saracens they should not be classed as the top tier opposition for the Reds. Still an away trip to any English side can be tricky and yet another last minute get out of jail moment from Munster proved that to be the case once more. Continue reading

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Pro 12 – Testing Times Ahead Of Europe

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Clean sweep it may have been, but perfect it was anything but. This most recent weekend of Pro 12 rugby has shown just how much the Irish provinces, Ulster aside, may be clinging on by their fingernails in European competitions this season, a shame when the new iteration could do with some input from nations outside of France and England to solidify it somewhat. That’s not to say that things are in dire straits and we would be lucky to see even one Irish side make the knock outs, but several kicks up several behinds are required in order for all four provinces to be competitive.  Continue reading

Pro 12 – Green Glory For Pat Lam’s Connacht

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Well, that was somewhat unexpected. Not entirely, which is good. But once more Connacht have found themselves on the right end of a game that previously would have been a heroic defeat. Not this Connacht, not Pat Lam’s Connacht 2.0. It’s hard to pinpoint what exactly has changed, seeing as how the new wonder signings have, for the most part, not joined the squad yet. But Conancht are growing, and with a lot of homegrown talent still stoking the fires I should add. Wins like last Friday’s over Leinster just keep the train going and they now sit in the top 4 of the table, whilst Leinster lick the wounds of two close defeats. Continue reading

Pro 12 – Big Guns Returning For The Provinces

Felix Jones returns to 15 for Munster tonight

Felix Jones returns to 15 for Munster tonight

Firstly, apologies. Yes there was no preview/review of the opening weekend of the Guinness Pro 12 last week, lack of planning and timekeeping are at fault for that one. For what it’s worth, I would’ve predicted every game entirely wrong so that’s something! Normal service can now resume however and we can now look ahead to this weekend’s upcoming fixtures. Continue reading

Rent-a-Room: The Solution To Student Housing In Galway?

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With the ever-rising costs of living and the high rates for rent in Galway, students are struggling to find affordable accommodation for the new term. The Rent-a-Room tax relief scheme allows a homeowner to accrue a tax free income of up to €10,000 per annum. Aidan Clifford, technical director of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants promotes the idea, citing that “The Rent-A- Room relief is a good option for Galway home owners with a spare room located near good transport routes”. But is this what is best for both the homeowners and the students? On the surface this wonderful scheme seems ideal, with the homeowners able to earn potentially tax free earnings and students being able to find affordable accommodation, yet there seems little structure or security for the tenant and the homeowner seems to hold all the power unmonitored.

The intrusion of opening your home to a total stranger is daunting at best, especially if that person is a lively, energetic teenager free from the shackles of his/her parents for the first time. Homeowners have earned the right to enjoy the privacy and safety they have worked so hard for and giving that up will not be an easy decision for anyone. The cold hard fact that the cost of living is higher than ever, and that jobs are sparse could cause many who are not prepared for such responsibility to do so out of necessity as opposed to choice. The elderly people touted as ideal for the programme may not be able to cope with the arrival of a young person in their living space. Students are notoriously loud, disruptive and often seen as a nuisance in big college or university towns. How would an elderly person cope with a nineteen year old man bringing home his drunken classmate for a roll in the hay at 3am? They won’t, they can’t. It is as simple as that. The risk to some potential “landlords” in this case seem to be vastly under examined, as are the dangers to the students in question. Continue reading

GAA: Mayo Hold Off Cork As Monaghan Scrape Past Lilywhites

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All-Ireland Quarter Finals

Mayo 1-19 Cork 2-15

Mayo held off a resilient Cork side to secure a semi final date with Kerry following a narrow one point win at Croke Park.

The first half started at a slow pace with Mayo wasting a lot of opportunities, as Cork began to settle down more quickly. Cork took the lead with some excellent scores from Brian Hurley in the opening part of the first half. Mayo took longer to find their shooting boots, but when they did get going they got right back into the game. The game was point for point for most of the rest of the first half with a tense atmosphere developing between both sides.

The second half saw Mayo exert some control over the game and they looked like pulling away as they built up some a big lead with great points from Alan Dillon and Andy Moran. Mayo stepped off the gas which allowed the rebels back into the game and the reliable Donnacha O’Connor notched up 1-3 for his side with a superbly well taken goal to reel back the westerners. Mayo remained composed and their patience paid off when Aidan O’Shea rounded the Cork goalie Ken O’Halloran to give Mayo a much needed boost. It was to be tense once more as straight after this Brian Hurley cut through the Mayo cover to blast his shot to the Mayo net to keep the rebels within the game. Mayo seemed a little nerve wrecked after conceding this goal, but they stuck to their task and added some late points to ensure their victory despite some late pressure from Cork. Continue reading

GAA: Mayo Battle Rebels As Kerry Face Tribesmen

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All Ireland Football Quarter Finals

Cork v Mayo

This will be by far the game of the weekend with Mayo having failed to win an All-Ireland in recent times and this Cork side are looking for some redemption to overcome their poor showing so far in this championship.  Getting badly beaten by Kerry in the Munster final and their near miss against Tipperary will give them all the motivation they need to spark an upturn in fortune. Cork may have made into the All-Ireland quarter final stage but they have been far from impressive so far in this year’s championship.  Mayo will certain fancy their chances against the rebels this weekend as they have been far more impressive as the championship has progressed.  Mayo have been doing what is required of them to get to this stage of the championship and have shown some weaknesses in their play particularly in defence and midfield as they haven’t been as prominent as last year. Cork will need to use Paul Kerrigan’s influence once again to link up play between defence and attack and this could result in some problems for the Connacht champions.

Cork have been poor so far in this championship and this is the game that they will judge their championship on. Mayo will likely need to improve around midfield and more so around defence. Cork’s poor showing in the championship and Mayo’s need to perform to the same heights as last year makes this game a hard one to call. Continue reading

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