Cork Polocrosse Tournament at Ballindenisk The fourth annual Cork Polocrosse Tournament at Ballindenisk, Watergrasshill, Co. Cork, stood out from all other polocrosse tournaments this year for one very special reason: Sunshine! Players were blessed with sunshine all day on Saturday, July 21, however cloud and misty rain returned for Sunday’s play. This was no bad thing as the horses performed better in the cooler weather. Clubs from seven counties (Limerick, Tipperary, Offaly, Wicklow , Wexford, Down and Dublin) travelled to the well known equestrian venue to play this exciting sport, which is known in Ireland as hurling on horseback. Cork chairperson Amanda Cody says everything went off without a hitch: “The tournament was a huge success, it was great to see so many competitors, we had close to 90 players. Thanks to the Fell family for the use of the fabulous grounds at Ballindenisk and of course we would be lost without our prize sponsors: Gain feeds, Pet Health Ireland, O’Brien’s Saddlery, EquusPix, Orchard Equestrian, Ryall O’Mahony’s, The Kilkenny Shop and Midleton Distillery. I suppose from our own club’s point of view, we are just so proud of our players who not only competed at almost every level, but helped with running the event as well.”
Rebecca Mackay from Co. Down relaxing with her horse after a hard game
Wicklow Bay’s Clive Nuzum with the ball and Brendan Liddy from Dublin in an A/B game. Photo: equusPix
Amy O’Connor from Cork and Isabelle Aiken from Dublin in a Junior A game. Photo: EquusPix
Joanne O’Flynn passes the ball to Laura Carey while John Condren attempts to intercept it in a C grade game. Photo: EquusPix
Mike Murphy from Cork and Niall Holohan from Wicklow Bay in a C grade game In Junior B grade, first place went to the Wicklow Bay team of Emma O’Hagan, Zoe Nuzum, Caroline Bradshaw. Second place went to Caoimhleann O’Leary from Cork, Jack
Holohan from Wicklow Bay and Emma Beausang from Cork. The best horse award in Junior B went to Zoe Nuzum’s horse Jet. Zoe also won the best rider award.
Dublin’s Gokmen Altinkulp tries to stop Stephen Nuzum from Wicklow Bay in an A/B grade match.. Photo: EquusPix In Junior A grade, the Dublin team of Isabelle Aiken, Luke Brandon and Daniel Keogh came first after some very strong games, second place with to Wicklow Bay team Ellie Walters, Abbey Hamill, Laura Bradshaw and third place went to Cork’sAmy O’Connor, Katie Conway and Karla Butler. Isabelle’s horse Daisy was named best horse in Junior A, while Daniel Keogh was named best rider. In D grade, the Limerick team were favourites from the start and won each game easily to come out on top. Well done to John Hanrahan, Natasha Hanrahan and Ian Morrissey. Second place went to the Cork team: Jill Murphy from Douglas, Liam Guilfoyle from Rochestown and Amanda Cody from Midleton. The Horetown team from Co. Wexford came third: John Byrne, Liam McKelvie and Karen Whitney. John Hanrahan won best rider in D grade, while Amanda Cody’s horse Dell won best horse. C grade, which is often the most competitive grade, was won by a mixed team who called themselves the Mavericks. Well done to Cork’s Mike Murphy and Joanne O’Flynn, Limerick’s Laura Carey, Offaly’s Tadhg O’Leary and Paddy O’Brien, and Tipperary’s Bill Lalor on a well deserved win. Second place went to the Wicklow Bay team: John Condren, Niall Holohan, Rita O’Hagan, Holly Nuzum, Myles Nolan, Harry Nuzum. Third place went
to another mixed team: Nicky Wall from Limerick, Elise Beausang from Cork, Conner English from Tipperary, Rebecca Mackay from Tyrella, Co. Down, Fergie Cahill from Cork, and Emily Collins from Limerick. The best horse award went to Holly Nuzum’s horse Ferrari, while Cork’s Joanne O’Flynn was named best rider. In the highest grade – A/B – first place went to a mixed team called the Reapers. It was the first time in the history of the Cork Polocrosse Club that Cork players won at this level. Congratulations to Cork’s Padraig Edwards, Wexford’s Aiden McDonagh, Limerick’s Mick Collins, Cork’s Richie Crockett and Tipperary’s Shane Harris and Moss Foley. Second place went to the Wexford team: Conor Doyle, Sharon Kennedy, Karl Hearne, Dayna Moran, Shannen Furlong, BJ Byrne. Third place went to the Dublin team: Tom O’Malley, Richard Donnelly, Brendan Liddy, Siobhan Hanley, Gokmen Altinkulp, Paul O’Leary. Best horse award went to Tom O’Malley’s horse Amarillo and Karl Hearne was named best rider at that grade. Naomi Crowley from Dublin was named best turned out played of the weekend. For more information on polocrosse, visit www.polocrosse.ie
For more information, contact: Cork Polocrosse Club Chairperson: Amanda Cody 087-2663889 Cork Polocrosse Club PRO: Joanne O’Flynn 086-0414354 Footnote Polocrosse is known as “hurling on horseback” due to its extremely fast pace, quick ball passing and also because it’s enjoyed by many who have played hurling at some point! At 160 yards in length and 60 yards wide, the polocrosse field is close to a GAA-sized pitch. Teams score points by throwing the ball through their opponent’s goal posts using racquets. All players can catch, carry and throw the ball with their racquets. However, only the player at the number 1 position is allowed to score. The rules are designed with one primary concern, safety for player and horse. Teams are comprised of two sections with three players in each. The player who wears number 1 is the primary offensive player and scores the goals. The number 2 is the “swing” player, playing both offense and defense in the middle of the field. The number 3′s job is to defend the goal. The two sections alternate players in six or eight-minute periods or “chukkas.” A typical match consists of four or six chukkas.