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Cork Independent

Sport

Game On

Wednesday, 13th December, 2017 5:05pm

2017 is a year the Kanturk club will never forget. They won the County Premier Intermediate Hurling Championship, they added the Munster title, and then for good measure, they completed a Cork double by winning the Intermediate Football Championship.

In all, they played 14 championship games and Darren Browne played in every one of them, making him a worthy recipient of the 96FM/C103 GAA Sports Star of the Month for November in association with the Rochestown Park Hotel.

Darren was presented with the award on Friday last and said: “It’s been an unbelievable season for us and I am only here today because of the hard work of my team mates and management, while I would also like to thank my parents for their continued support.”

County Board Chairman Ger Lane, attending his last function, was fulsome in his praise for Darren and Kanturk. “It’s been a fairytale year for the club and Darren has been a key figure and hopefully the club can continue and with an All-Ireland semi-final to look forward to, Croke Park is only 60 minutes away.”

“These awards are the most prestigious in the county and I wish to thank both sponsors for their support and promotion of our games.”

Diarmuid Vaughan of Rochestown Park Hotel and Kieran McGeary, 96FM, were also fulsome in their praise and wished the best of luck to Kanturk in the All-Ireland semi-final against Ulster champions Middletown in January.

Darren, a student in Mary Immaculate College, also played with Cork in the senior and under 21 setups this year and has a busy few months ahead with the Fitzgibbon Cup also to come. He is the fourth Kanturk player to win a monthly award as Lorcan McLoughlin, Anthony Nash and Aidan Walsh were previous winners, the latter two were also overall winners.

In attendance were County Board Officers Tracey Kennedy, Donal Leahy, Jerry Walsh and Richard Murphy. Kanturk officials in attendance included Chairman Tom O’Callaghan, Runai Francis Kennelley, hurling coach Jim McCarthy and among a large group of players present were Aidan Walsh, and Darren’s brother John, along with his parents.

At the conclusion of the event both Kieran McGeary and Diarmuid Vaughan made presentations to Ger Lane in acknowledgement of his outstanding support for the awards.

County Convention

A low key but historic one as Tracey Kennedy became the first female to hold the position of Chairperson and her opening speech received a wonderful reaction from the delegates.

Heartiest congratulations on her election and best wishes for the three year term, and of course the same goes to the other officers elected: Kevin O’Donovan, Vice-Chairman; Pat Horgan, Development Officer; Diarmuid Gowen, Treasurer; Des Cullinane, Children’s Officer and Coaching Officer Ronan Dwane.

The draws for the county championships were also held and of course threw up some interesting pairings.

In senior hurling champions Imokilly begin the defence of their title with a knockout clash with Muskerry; runners-up Blackrock meet Carrigtwohill; Kanturk's first senior encounter pits them against Newtownshandrum, while Douglas renew rivalry against Killeagh. Then it’s Glen Rovers vs Ballymartle, St Finbarrs vs Newcestown, Na Piarsaigh vs Bandon and Bishopstown vs Midleton.

Cork and Munster football champions Nemo Rangers face Carrigaline in senior football; the ‘Barrs, beaten after a replay in a cracking final, meet Carrigaline; St Nick’s play Kiskeam and there's an all city clash of Douglas and Bishopstown while new senior side Mallow play Valley Rovers.

Next week in my final column for 2017 I will look back on the highs and lows of the season.

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