1892 The Beginning

The oldest report on record relating to Barryroe GAA Club dates back to 1892 when the newly formed team played in a Timoleague football tournament. The following article from the Southern Star between a game between Barryroe and Clonakilty is simply remarkable:

Match Report Southern Star 8th October 1892

A Sunday was allowed to lapse since the matches played between Barryroe (seconds), and Timoleague (seconds) and Ardfield and Timoleague, at the above Tournament. It will be re-membered by those who were present to witness the above encounters that the weather interfered materially with the progress of the play. Indeed, I think the fact is sufficiently impressed on their memories. The wind that blew that day and the rain that fell that day, were simply astonishing. Sunday last, to which the Tournament was postponed, was beautifully fine. The sun shone, " the gentle zephyr was there in all its play-fulness, and the change was much commented on by lovers of Gaelic sports and pastimes, each of whom undertook to act the part of a prophet in his own land, and declared that the following Sunday would be wet. It is agreeable sometimes to be dismal, but I am glad to be able to record that the wet blanket meteorological prophets were not verified. The weather was idealic. Only once during the day did some rain fall, but it was only a momentary shower - generally speaking tbe sun and the zephyr held undisputed sway, and they were much appreciated by the large number of spectators who lined the field of play. Has it been mentioned that the " fair 6" were there? Let it be mentioned now. They were, and whether it be believed or not, it may be stated that the beauty and style of their costumes formed a moving rainbow on the field. What would Gaelic football be without the presence of the ladies? Now with regard to the programme of the day's proceedings. There was only the one match played, and that began at three o'clock. Consequently the visitors had plenty of time on hands. On next Sunday, and until the Tournament is concluded, the Committee intend to have two matches. This will be a decided improvement, and it while it hastens the termination of the Tournament, will add to the interest of the people attending. The match between Clonakilty and Barryroe was deemed a foregone conclusion. And so it proved not alone in the first, but also in the second half. Clon gave ample indications that they are worthy of the title of the Champion Football club of West Cork. A word as to Barryroe. They are in the popular phrase, " good men." This is true. They play with foroe and determination, but not with " skill". Herein is the weakness of the team. But they have never before played Gaelic, and lovers of the Association ought to be obliged to them for their courage in organizing a club in their district, and secondly, coming fearlessly (untrained as they are) to face such a splendid team as Clonakilty. If the same spirit and love of Gaelic, pastimes prevailed in other-districts of the West of the County, the fame of West Cork as a Gaelic centre would be widely known. That, however, is somewhat outside the present subject matter. Barryroe were defeated - yes, but Barryroe need not be, and I am sure, are not disheartened, It would be a pity that such a fine body of men, and who only require practice to pave the way to victory, should fall cut of the Gaelic ranks. This, I hope, will not occur, and whenever they do friendly battle again may I, be there - to see, and may victory crown their efforts. Of course, Clon may wonder why some favourable comments are not bestowed on them. Well, to praise " Clon" would be like painting the lily." They do not need praise.  I will only say, that the team which wrests the championship, from them will need to be a skilful one, indeed. Let me here remark that the general good will which has prevailed during the continuance of the Tournament is the best proof of how the Association has promoted, the object for which it was organized.

Clon were so fortunate as to win the toss and had auxiliary aids in the shape of the wind and the incline in the ground. When the leather was skied, a rapid tussle took place, and then the men from Clon waltzed away with the globe of leather, and the ball went into touch near the sides, from whence when thrown out, Barryroe got it back to the centre, where it again went into touch. From the throw out Clon put it down to the enemies posts, and a flying kick saw a point scored - a feat which was greeted with cheers. The kick out from the posts put the leather sideways, and into that safeguard touch but when once in play Clon were well on it, and made a claim for a 41 yard kick, which was disallowed. From the play which followed, Barryroe worked with a will, to place as great a distance as possible between the Clon posts and the ball, and did succeed so far as the centre, where a dispute arose over an alleged foul by Clonakilty, but it turned out to be a trifle light as air and passed over. Clon then became active, put the ball into the enemies territory and in what appeared to be a very easy manner put in a goal, thereafter play was in the vicinity of the Barryroe posts and then in the centre where some long distance kicks by Clonakilty gave them the upper hand, but Barryroe gallantly responded and made matters lively. A fine tussle took place in front of the Barryroe posts, in which both sides made some fearful misses and then a box from a Clon man nearly got a point, the ball just passing the outside of the post. Soon after this, Clonakilty got a foul and put in a point from the free kick, making it two points and a goal to the present. The utmost efforts of Barryroe seemed to render them unable to get the ball beyond the half line. Every time it reached the centre their opponents responded with vigour and put Barryroe on a defence. Then came a change. Barryroe sailed in, and the ball sailed off beyond the centre, and for a time it really seemed as if some good would come to Barryroe, but such did not prove to be the case, and once more they were hard beset in their own half. A rush, a strong no-get-over rush, saw the leather bounding in from the Barryroe posts, and how a score was averted, the writer-cannot say, but it was. and the play diverged to the sides. For some time following nothing was done of particular note. The next worthy event was a long kick, and a point was marked up against Barryroe, but the referee said a Barryroe man had put in the ball, and awarded a forty yards kick to Clon. Away flew the leather through the air, straight for the goal posts, and only for a grand defence by Barryroe, a goal would have been scored. As it was, no score was made. Barryroe then relieved themselves by a dushing piece of play. Up the field went the ball, and nearer to Clon posts, but, as usual, Clon came off best, and when half time was called the ball was in Barryroe half. Half time Clonakilty 1-01 Barryroe 0-00.

When the fun began in the second half the wind was very slight. Barryroe began well by getting the ball into the Clon half, and showing every inclination to keep it there. After a little it went into touch, and a small dispute arose. When play was renewed Clon put on forcing tactics, and very quickly laid seige to the Barryroe posts, and after a tussle of short duration, put in a point, apparently over which a verbal dispute arose immediately after, and the score was not recorded. The ball was soon after in Barryroe ground, a foul claimed, and a forty yards kick was demanded, but not allowed. The terrific onslaught of Clon were not to be withstood, and again and again only a hair's breadth prevented a score. P Sutton, Captain of the Clon team did wonders, and he was ably seconded, but Barryroe seemed charm proof against every attempt at scoring, and eventually put the leather into Clonakilty ground. A loose combination on the part of Barryroe made their repelling actions ineffective. Clonakilty again made headway, and after a give and take combat, put in a point. The kick out saw a general engagement in front of the goal, one repelling, the other attacking till a kick saw the ball sail apparently over the point posts, but the referee decided it was no score. Clon made another desperate attack, and this is what occurred. The ball would have gone through the points post but for a bystander, who stopped it, then it seemed to go through. A Barryroe man kept in the play, and the result was the ball went between the goal posts, A point was given to Clonakilty, the referee deciding that after the point had been put in the play had ceased for the time, and the goal could not be, therefore, recorded. With great vigour and determination, Barryroe now worked together and "cleared all before them" Clon were put on the defensive, and a magnificent piece of play was witnessed abroad Clon posts, but, the veterans in charge proved they were worthy of the trust reposed in them, and amid enthusiastic cheering staved off the leather without allowing a score. This was not the only grand attempt of Barryroe to score. They were at it again in a few moments, but only to find themselves again driven away. To both sides the highest commendation must be given, and it was certainly worth coming a distance to see this part of the play. Decidedly Barryroe vastly improved on their display in the first half, and had they a less skilful team than Clonakilty to contend with, might have made some score, and so gained a little encourgement, but, indeed, it must be said this quality did not desert them throughout the whole time of the play. To say the combat, let it be so called, was now fast and furious is applying a mild term. Both teams were in the highest state of excitement, and to add to this, the crowd encroached, and a foul occurred, but time passed before attention was played to the whistle of the referee. When the teams were "called to order" it was found that the time was up and the match ended. Final score Clonakilty 1-04 Barryroe 0-00.

Barryroe: M.Collins (Captain), W.Flynn, J.Farrissey, P.O'Brien, D.Donovan, J.Sexton, J.Cummins, P.Flynn, E.Mccarthy, J.O'Brien, W.White, M.Slattery, C.Driscoll, W.Barry, J.Twohig, M.O'Regan, M.O'Neill.

Clonakilty: P.Sutton (Captain), P.Santry (Vice-Captain), W.Santry, W.Deasy, M.Hurley, J.Mccarthy, F.Brien, M.Sullivan, F.Sullivan, M.Santry, P.Reilly, R.Perrott, J.Cash, J.Brosnan, D.Fitzpatrick, D.Donovan, P.Burke, S.Field.

Umpire: J.Wycherley.

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