Fom Club History Bride Rovers Abú written by John Arnold
At a club meeting in Bartlemy on February 20th 1976 it was decided to write to CIE about getting an old railway carriage for a dressing-room similar to what was in use in Conna for years. On March 8th the secretary was instructed to write to the bus station about getting an old bus. Things rested so for the remainder of 1976. At the next AGM on Sunday January 2nd 1977, Fr. Seanie Barry stressed that some form of dressing-room was vital. A sub committee of Tony Walsh, Pat Hoskins and trainer Tom Barry was appointed with power to spend £100. At the first meeting of the year on January 20th it was reported that a bus had been purchased for £80 and John Meade said he had arranged for the bus to be brought to the pitch at a cost of £15. It was agreed to commence work on the bus on April 22nd. This was later deferred to Saturday 19th May at 1.30 when chipboard supplied by Mick Barry was to be bolted on the sides. This work was done and the roof was also made waterproof. This bus served as a dressing-room for the next 6 years until playing activities moved to Pairc Na Bride. When the old pitch was being vacated the bus had to be disposed of and this proved another major problem as by now it was little more than a shell and could not be towed. Eventually it went for scrap - but it cost more to get rid of it than it did to purchase
Hard to Keep a Secret
The first round of the Junior
'A' hurling championship 1979 was fixed for Watergrasshill on Sunday June 24th 2.45 followed by Erin's Own and Glanmire in the Junior 'A' football
championship. Carrignavar, having been heavily defeated by Cloyne in 1978,
weren't expected to be too strong. On the day however, Carrig played very well
with Sean Walsh and Sean O'Riordan causing the Rovers fierce problems. In the
end a draw, Bride Rovers 0-11 to Carrignavar 1-8, was the result. At the East
Cork Board meeting on the following Wednesday night, the replay of the game was
fixed for the following Saturday week July 7th, at Watergrasshill again. While
the Board meeting was in session in Midleton, the Bride Rovers hurling team was
playing Kilworth in a tournament game in Ballyduff, Co. Waterford. The Rovers
won the game but the referee ordered a Bride Rovers player off the field. On
Thursday morning when the replay date was made known, there was consternation.
Even if the player sent off received the minimum two week suspension, he would
miss the replay. The club officers had a consultation and it was decided to
contact the referee in question and ask him to "forget" about sending
the player off. In fairness, the referee agreed to this strategy. Then all the
Rovers supporters who had been at the game - about 15 in all - had to be spoken
to and the situation explained to them. This was done and it was expected no
one would ever know the player had been sent off and he would be available for
the replay. The whole plan came unstuck however, as within a few days the word
came back from the Carrignavar camp that they knew exactly what had happened.
The player in question couldn't take part in the replay which Carrignavar won
Moving the Goalposts
At a tournament game in
Ballincurrig in the early 1950's the term "moving the goalposts" took
on a new meaning. The playing field at Ballincurrig belonged to local publican
Charlie Smart and was behind the "Barracks".This field was mainly
used for tournaments which might be only for a few weeks in any year. Smarts'
cows obviously had access to the field - indeed, livestock had "grazing
rights" in most pitches at the time. Cattle and cows especially love
"scratching" and of course the goalpost uprights were very suitable
for this purpose. Constant scratching by cows meant that goalposts became quite
loose in the ground and would sway from side to side easily. At this particular
tournament match the home team, Lisgoold, were ahead by a point with time
almost up. Bride Rovers were awarded a free from a fairly scoreable position.
The free taker may have been Michael O'Riordan. He bent, he lifted, and he
struck a fairly good shot which seemed like an_equaliser. The local umpire,
however, sensing a possible draw put his shoulder against the loose goalpost
and it duly moved. A movement of 6 inches at the base of the post of course
resulted in a move of maybe 3 or 4 feet at the top of the post. By the quick
thinking of the umpire what would have been an equaliser sailed narrowly wide
and ensured a home victory!
"Watch Out For the Bull!"
During late April and the month of May 1971
the Junior hurlers played 6 tournament games. The first of these was on April
25th against Whites Cross in the Whites Cross Tournament. The pitch, like most
club pitches at the time, was a field rented from a local farmer and before the
game began, a herd of cows and a bull were herded to the bottom of the field
away from the playing pitch. The match was going ahead and was a close affair.
Near the end Whites Cross were ahead by two points. The Rovers were attacking
in search of a winning score. Dave Ryan was standing close to the Whites Cross
goal and as the Rovers forwards attacked, Dave shouted "Hi, look at the
bull, mind the bull!" (or words to that effect). Naturally the Whites
Cross goalkeeper fearing for his safety looked around, neglecting his duties
and in a flash, the sliothar was in the net. Shortly afterwards the final
whistle went and the Rovers were winners -mainly thanks to Dave Ryan's timely
vocal intervention ! It was a few years later before this tournament was
finalised and for the final there was no bovine presence and Erin's Own won.