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Colm Bonnar Named New Tipperary Senior Hurling Boss.

Tipperary native and former county player Colm Bonnar has been officially named as the new Tipperary senior hurling manager. This confirmation, identifying a suitable replacement for outgoing manager Mr Liam Sheedy, follows a meeting of the Tipperary’s County management committee on last night.

Previous successes:
Bonnar oversaw Carlow’s progression to the Leinster SHC for two seasons; winning the McDonagh Cup, Christy Ring Cup and Division 2A league crown during his successful incumbency.

The Cashel native, together with former Tipperary and Waterford hurler Andy Moloney, Bonnar also guided Ballyhale to All-Ireland honours in 2015.

Having served three years as “Yellow Bellies” (Wexford) manager, Bonner has previously also been involved in management teams in his native county and Co. Waterford.

Playing Career:
As a player on the field, Bonnar won a minor All-Ireland in 1982; an under-21 title in 1985; and senior All-Ireland titles in both 1989 and 1991, with his brothers Cormac and Conal with Tipperary.

In 1991 he captained the Cashel team which won Tipperary and Munster club honours.

We wish Colm every success in his future roll.

Other Sports News:
We also wish success to five-time ‘All-Star’ Brendan Cummins who has been appointed as the under-20 manager for a three-year term.


September 2021 Is ‘Heart Month’.

September is Heart Month and this year the Irish Heart Foundation is all about men’s health!

RPI Ambassadors Peter Stringer and Malcolm O’Kelly are helping us Reboot this September.

Ms Janis Morrissey, (Director of Health Promotion, Irish Heart Foundation), reports.

Did you know that 1 in 4 men will die from heart disease and stroke? And men are nearly three times more likely than women to die young from heart disease and stroke?

But the good news is that 80% of these deaths are preventable with lifestyle changes.

That’s why we in the Irish Heart Foundation  have teamed up with  Rugby Players Ireland to get men all over Ireland to Reboot their life.
Supported by the HSE, we are here to help men to challenge themselves to make some positive lifestyle changes for their heart health.

Head over to irishheart.ie to find out how you or the men in your life can Reboot and  make small changes for a healthier heart  and future.

You’ll find plenty of tips and Reboot stories from our Rugby Players Ireland Ambassadors Tommy Bowe, Paul Wallace, Malcom O’Kelly and Peter Stringer as well as the inspiring stories of our Irish Heart Foundation Ambassadors Don O’Sullivan and Niall Nugent.

It’s never too late to choose to Reboot.” Signed Janis Morrissey.


Report Highlights Importance Of Greyhound Racing Industry To Tipperary Economy.

The significant contribution made by the greyhound racing industry to the Irish exchequer and rural employment is highlighted in a new report published today by Greyhound Racing Ireland (GRI).

The report, compiled by consultant economist Jim Power, contains a county-by-county breakdown of the 6,211 active owners across the island of Ireland with Cork leading the way, accounting for 890 or 15% of the overall number followed by Tipperary (669, 11.3%), Kerry (599, 10.1%), Limerick (540, 9.1%), Wexford (314, 5.3%) and Kilkenny (286, 4.8%.). Tipperary accounts for 12.5% (50) of the 400 active trainers in Ireland followed by Cork (38, 9.5%), Kerry (34, 8.5%), Limerick (30, 7.5%), Wexford (21, 5.25%) and Tyrone (19, 4.75%).

The report shows the industry made a net contribution to the Irish economy of €132.3 million in 2019 and supported 4,150 full-time and part-time jobs. An additional 6,211 active greyhound owners derived economic benefit from the industry in 2019, the last full year of activity before the pandemic. An investment of a further €117.8 million was made by greyhound owners in 2019 in preparing and racing greyhounds.

While Covid-19 restrictions have resulted in a significant decrease in activity and revenue during 2020 and 2021, GRI expects to return to pre-pandemic activity and attendances in 2023.

The report also contains details on the care and welfare initiatives progressed by GRI during the past two years, including the provision of care and foster care centres, the introduction of an expanded inspection programme for greyhound establishments, the operation of a Greyhound Injuries Support Scheme, and the commissioning of the Rásaíocht Con Éireann Traceability System. 3,995 greyhounds also have been rehomed (2019 – 974; 2020 – 1,775; 2021 to 30 June – 1,246) with the support of GRI and the Irish Retired Greyhound Trust.

Frank Nyhan, (Chairman of Greyhound Racing Ireland), commented, “The greyhound industry is going through a very challenging period, but the economic, financial, and employment contribution remains significant.”

“The challenges experienced in recent years by the industry include declining attendances, the closure of some tracks for economic reasons, Brexit and adverse publicity in relation to welfare and other practices within the industry,” added Mr. Nyhan.
“The ongoing challenge for GRI is to continue the development of a commercial greyhound racing industry built on a consumer-focused, and high-quality entertainment product, which meets the highest possible international regulatory and welfare standards.”

Mr. Nyhan says COVID-19 has represented a significant challenge for the industry, but as restrictions are eased, activity levels are expected to recover.

“In 2019, 462,709 patrons attended race meetings, and it is difficult to see that total being surpassed in 2022. However, provided the public and private greyhound stadia are put on a sound commercial footing, and there is a continuance of the aggressive approach to regulating the sector it is anticipated that attendance levels will reach or exceed pre-pandemic levels in 2023,” he explained.

Gerard Dollard, CEO of Greyhound Racing Ireland, says government support for the sector is “very important”, and in the absence of such support, there would be “considerable implications” for rural employment and economic activity.

In 2019 and 2020, the Department of Agriculture, Fund and the Marine paid €16.8 million to the greyhound industry through the Horse and Greyhound Racing Fund, and it increased the allocation to €19.2 million in 2021 to provide general support to the industry and to enable it deal with Covid.

“The greyhound industry is an important part of the social and economic fabric of rural Ireland. It supports considerable employment directly and indirectly down through the supply chain, and it is an important way of life for greyhound owners around the country. For stakeholders in the sector, it is an important economic and social activity,” explained Mr. Dollard.

Highlights from the Greyhound Racing Ireland report:

  • The total cost to greyhound owners each year of keeping the ‘greyhound pipeline’ in operation is around €117.79 million. This is a significant amount of expenditure, and much of it is injected into local economies and supports thousands of local jobs.
  • Wagering activity on greyhounds contributes to the overall betting levy collected by the Exchequer. This levy was increased from 1% to 2% in 2019 resulting in a return to the Exchequer of €95 million in 2019.
  • In 2019, the total prize money granted was €9.58 million, of which GRI contributed 82.4 per cent, which works out at €7.89 million. The remainder came from race entry fees and sponsorship contributions. In 2020, the total prize money granted was €6.11 million, of which GRI contributed 81 per cent, which works out at €4.95 million. Between 2006 and 2020, prize money totalling €129.9 million was paid out, with GRI contributing 74.4 per cent, which works out at €96.6 million.
  • An estimated €8 million per year was raised at greyhound meetings for worthy causes. In a post-Covid world, greyhound racing will re-establish itself as a significant vehicle for fundraising for sporting organisations such as GAA clubs and charitable causes.
  • While much has been made in media reports of withdrawal of sponsors from support of greyhound racing, this is not borne out in reality. Three sponsors withdrew from sponsorship due to targeted and significant campaigns from those opposed to greyhound racing. GRI has seen some new sponsors emerge and other sponsors are willing to continue to support the industry but have asked for a lesser public profile than heretofore.
  • An area of growth for GRI has been the sale of media rights for its greyhound racing activities. An agreement has been entered into with Sports Information Services (SIS) who transmit Irish greyhound racing to UK bookmaker outlets and international markets. The 8 meetings incorporate 2 early morning meetings (Waterford and Kilkenny) which are aimed towards the international wagering market. Total income from SIS in 2019 was €2.1M.

Semple Stadium – Fields of Legends.

‘Semple Stadium – Fields of Legends’ – by Author Liam Ó Donnchú.

Semple Stadium, Thurles, Co Tipperary, is truly “the home of hurling”.

This illustrated history of Semple Stadium begins in 1884, when the GAA was founded in Thurles and chronicles the story of ‘Thurles Sportsfield’, from its purchase in 1910, right up to the present day.

This truly major publication features all its great days; from the development of the stadium; major games that were played there; significant players and managers; broadcasting from the grounds; the work of the groundsmen, Féile-The Trip to Tipp and other events held at the stadium over the years.

It also contains personal recollections and accounts of this place where legends are made. The publication is also richly illustrated by archive photographs and ephemera.

The Author.

Liam Ó Donnchú is a native of Hollyford, County Tipperary and now resides at Ballymoreen, near Thurles.

Having spent over four decades as a primary school teacher; Liam, now retired, is director of Lár na Páirce, the museum of Gaelic Games in Thurles and for many years, PRO of Semple Stadium. He is a former player, secretary and chairman of Thurles Sarsfields GAA club and at present its vice-president.

Liam is author of such publications as: Thurles Sarsfields GAA Story Vol 1&2, Tom Semple and The Thurles Blues, Pouldine School-Inné agus Inniu, co-author of Tipperary’s GAA Ballads, Horse and Jockey- a pictorial record and has written numerous articles on Gaelic games.

His latest book, ‘Semple Stadium – Fields of Legends’ will be published this September by the O’Brien Press and is available to pre-order online at Eason [ Link https://bit.ly/3ztEhGL ]

The book, which we highly recommend to lovers of Gaelic sports, is published in hardback; contains 384 pages and costs €24.99.


Tipperary Hurling Sponsor Declan Kelly Accused Of Drunken Antics At Charity Event.

Mr D. Kelly (Teneo)

According to Independent.ie, multi-millionaire PR mogul and Tipperary senior hurling sponsor Mr Declan Kelly, brother of Labour Leader and TD Mr Alan Kelly, has temporally stepped aside from some of his responsibilities as the CEO and chairperson of Teneo; latter, the strategy firm he co-founded. This follows accusations of drunkenly misbehaving at a charity event last month.

A statement made by a spokesperson for the chief executive said, Mr Kelly became inebriated and behaved inappropriately towards women and men at a cocktail party for a fundraising concert hosted by Global Citizen on May 2nd last, which was chaired by Prince Harry and Meghan Markle and featured performances by Jennifer Lopez, Foo Fighters and Selena Gomez, as well as appearances from President Joe Biden and Pope Francis.

Global Citizen, headquartered in New York, with offices in Canada, South Africa, Australia, Germany and the United Kingdom, is a movement of engaged citizens who are using their collective voice to end extreme poverty by 2030.

Tipperary-born Mr Kelly is understood to have been asked for his resignation the day after the event, and resigned his board seat at Global Citizen, latter an anti-poverty charity, chaired by Mr Chris Stadler, the managing partner of CVC Capital Partners, the majority shareholder in Teneo.

The spokesperson’s statement further confirmed that Mr Kelly regretted his actions and had apologised to those he had offended. Mr Kelly had also “temporarily reduced his work responsibilities”, was now “committed to sobriety” and was “undertaking ongoing counselling from healthcare professionals”.