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Armagh county hurling team

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Armagh county hurling team represents Armagh GAA, the county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association, in the Gaelic sport of hurling. The team competes in the Nicky Rackard Cup and the National Hurling League.

Armagh's home ground is Athletic Grounds, Armagh. The team's manager is Padraig O'Connor.

The team has never won the Ulster Senior Championship, the All-Ireland Senior Championship or the National League.

The team is nicknamed the Orchard men.[1]


Like most counties outside of the game's heartland of Munster and south Leinster, hurling has tended to live in the shadow cast by Gaelic football in Armagh, with the exception of border areas such as Keady, Middletown and Armagh City.

In 2006, Armagh won the NHL Division 3 championship, winning all its games in the group stages before defeating Louth by a scoreline of 3–10 to 1–11 in the final at Breffni Park in Cavan. The step up to Division 2 proved to be a difficult one for the men from the Orchard County. While the team failed to win any of its group games, it was unfortunate to lose to Meath and also managed to come within a point of 2006 Christy Ring Cup finalists Carlow. Heavier defeats were suffered at the hands of more established counties such as Derry and Laois.

Armagh returned to the Ulster Senior Hurling Championship in May 2007 for the first time in almost 60 years with a match against Derry. Despite a strong performance, the team lost out on a semi-final encounter with neighbouring team Down due to an injury-time score.

The advances made in the county over the previous two years placed it as the favourite in the 2007 Nicky Rackard Cup Final against Roscommon on 12 August; however, Armagh lost this game by two points.[2]

Armagh won the 2010 Nicky Rackard Cup, defeating London by a scoreline of 3–15 to 3–14 at Croke Park on 3 July. The county's minor team won the Ulster Minor Hurling League Division One title and reached the final of the Ulster Minor Hurling Championship. The county's under-21 team also reached the final of the Ulster Under-21 Hurling Championship.

In 2011, Armagh reached the Ulster Senior Hurling Championship final for the first time since 1946 and advanced to the Ulster Under-21 Hurling Championship final for a second consecutive year, the first time in team history.

Armagh won the 2012 Nicky Rackard Cup, its second time to lift the trophy, defeating Louth by a scoreline of 3–20 to 1–15 at Croke Park on 9 June.[3][4]

Armagh lost the 2015 Nicky Rackard Cup final to Roscommon by a scoreline of 2–12 to 1–14, even though Roscommon had one less player due to a straight red card and the team was behind for the entire second-half until scoring a goal from a 20-metre free at the end.[5]

Armagh won Division 2B in 2016, earning promotion to Division 2A. But it was then relegated.

Armagh defeated Down in the 2016 Ulster Senior Hurling Championship semi-final, giving them a place in the final, where Antrim prevailed.[6][7] Armagh also lost to Antrim in the 2017 Ulster Senior Hurling Championship final.[8]

Armagh lost the 2016 Nicky Rackard Cup final to Mayo by a scoreline of 2–16 to 1–15, giving Mayo a first Nicky Rackard trophy.[9]

Armagh lost the 2017 Nicky Rackard Cup final to Derry by a scoreline of 3–23 to 2–15.[10]

Armagh lost the 2019 Nicky Rackard Cup final to Sligo by a scoreline of 2–14 to 2–13; though the team was four points ahead of Sligo as the game reached its conclusion, Sligo scored two late points and a goal to secure a one-point victory.[11]

Managerial history

Sylvester McConnell?

P. Kelly, the former Meath hurler, 2017–[12]

Kelly took charge of Armagh for the 2018 National Hurling League.[13]

Kelly stood aside upon Armagh's relegation to Division 3A of the National Hurling League,[14] replaced by interim manager Padraig O'Connor,[15] O'Connor then being reappointed in 2019[16]


All-Irelands (5)

Provincials (8)

Leagues (3)


  1. ^ "Toal goal keeps Orchard men in total control". Irish Independent. 26 October 2020.
  2. ^ "Roscommon celebrate". The Irish Times. 13 August 2007.
  3. ^ "Tyrone & Armagh earn Nicky Rackard and Lory Meagher Cup titles". BBC Sport. 9 June 2012.
  4. ^ "Nicky Rackard final: Orchard blooms against Louth". Hogan Stand. 9 June 2012.
  5. ^ "Michael Kelly delivers killer blow for Roscommon". Irish Examiner. 8 June 2015.
  6. ^ "Ulster Hurling semi-finals: Antrim and Armagh clinch places in decider". BBC Sport. 19 June 2016.
  7. ^ "Antrim claim goalfest to retain Ulster hurling title". Irish Examiner. 10 July 2016.
  8. ^ "Conor Johnston stars as goal crazy Antrim ease to Ulster title". RTÉ. 16 April 2017.
  9. ^ "Feeney hits 1–9 as Mayo secure Nicky Rackard Cup". Irish Independent. 4 June 2016.
  10. ^ "Derry power to Nicky Rackard Cup final win at Croke Park". Irish Independent. 10 June 2017.
  11. ^ "Sligo hurlers continue meteoric rise with late show". RTÉ. 22 June 2019.
  12. ^ "Meath native Paddy Kelly the new Armagh hurling manager". The Irish News. 12 December 2017.
  13. ^ "Armagh Hurlers open up NHL v Wicklow". Armagh GAA. 26 January 2018. The management of Paddy Kelly (ex Meath and Leinster player who coached St. Judes in Dublin last yr) James Doyle (Wexford) and Ruairi McGrattan (former Portaferry and Down player) have led a very intense training programme in which McGrattan has commented that 'the players have exceeded our expectations'... Armagh hurling backroom team :- Paddy Kelly, James Doyle, Ruairi McGrattan, Kieran Nugent, David O'Brien and Sean O'Maoilste.
  14. ^ "Armagh out to continue rebuilding process by winning promotion showdown with Roscommon". The Irish News. 9 March 2019. O'Connor, who had been involved under former Orchard boss Sylvester McConnell, came in when Paddy Kelly decided to step away following Armagh's relegation to Division 3A.
  15. ^ "Derry to heap more misery on Armagh". The Irish News. 19 May 2018.
  16. ^ "County Senior Hurling Manager". Armagh GAA. 6 August 2019.
This page was last edited on 30 July 2021, at 13:36
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