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Westmeath county football team

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Westmeath
Westmeath GAA crest.jpg
Sport:Football
Irish:An Iarmhí
Nickname(s):The Lake County
County board:Westmeath GAA
Manager:Jack Cooney
Captain:Kieran Martin
Home venue(s):Cusack Park, Mullingar
Recent competitive record
Current All-Ireland status:Leinster (QF) in 2020
Last championship title:None
Current NFL Division:2 (4th in 2020)
Last league title:None
First colours
Second colours

The Westmeath county football team represents Westmeath in men's Gaelic football and is governed by Westmeath GAA, the county board of the Gaelic Athletic Association. The team competes in the three major annual inter-county competitions; the All-Ireland Senior Football Championship, the Leinster Senior Football Championship and the National Football League.

Westmeath's home ground is Cusack Park, Mullingar. The team's manager is Jack Cooney.

The team last won the Leinster Senior Championship in 2004, but has never won the All-Ireland Senior Championship or the National League.

History

Westmeath's history is that of a minor county which only recently rose to the higher ranks of football. Its 2004 Leinster provincial title was presaged by a 1995 All-Ireland Minor title and victory in the 1999 All-Ireland Under-21 Football Championship.

Another generation of Westmeath players took part in the first week-night fixture in the GAA championship: on 20 June 1935 they played Meath in Kells and lost by 2-7 to 0-9. The footballers won the 1929 junior championship, lost to Dublin by ten points in 1960 and then defeated Dublin to reach the 1931 Leinster final. They defeated Carlow, Laois and Offaly to go into a 1949 final against Meath, but were well beaten on both occasions. Twenty years later they reached the National Football League semi-final. Westmeath defeated Dublin again in the 1967 Championship and the 1984 Centenary Cup campaign and qualified for their second League semi-final in 1994.

In 2001, the team went on an All-Ireland journey through an unprecedented nine games including an extra-time win over Mayo in Roscommon. Notable players in this campaign were Ger Heavin, Dessie Dolan, Rory O'Connell, Damien Healy and David Mitchell, with other players to star occasionally, including Martin Flanaghan, Fergal Wilson, Paul Conway, David O'Shaughnessy and Fergal Murray. Westmeath lost out to Meath in a quarter-final replay. Disappointing 2002 and 2003 seasons followed and Westmeath parted terms with its then manager, Luke Dempsey.

Kerry footballing legend Páidí Ó Sé was brought in to manage the senior team some months later, after he had been removed from the Kerry Senior team management. The following year, Westmeath progressed to the 2004 Leinster Senior Football Championship Final and won their first ever Leinster senior football title with a replayed victory over Laois (having previously beaten Wexford, Dublin and Offaly).[1] However the team tamely exited their second All-Ireland Quarter Final - losing to Derry. The documentary Marooned followed Westmeath during their 2004 season.

Ó Sé quit Westmeath at the end of a very poor 2005 season and was replaced by his assistant Tomás Ó Flatharta. After a poor league campaign, in which they were nevertheless promoted from Division 2, the team was knocked out of the Leinster Senior Football Championship in the first round by Offaly. However wins over London, Limerick, Sligo and then a historic defeat of Galway in Pearse Park in Salthill set up a third All-Ireland Quarter Final for the team in six years - this time against Dublin. Westmeath did not live up to expectations in the Quarter Final meeting against Dublin and lost by 10 points.

Westmeath staged a strong second half display to capture the 2008 Division 2 National Football League title for the third time, and the first since 2003 following a five-point win over Dublin at Páirc Tailteann, Navan. The score line was Westmeath 0-15, Dublin 0-10.

In the Quarter-Finals of the Leinster Championship in 2009 they were beaten by Dublin by 27 points. Ó Flatharta resigned as Westmeath manager after their defeat to neighbours Meath on 11 July 2009.

The county board, searching for a manager after the resignation of Ó Flatharta, appointed Brendan Hackett as manager in September 2009, with the choice of someone who had not managed at that level for many years seen as unexpected.[2][3] Hackett included Michael Carruth as a masseur and Eoin Rheinisch as part of "physical preparations" on his backroom team.[4] Westmeath embarked on a second successive league campaign without winning a game and were relegated to Division 3 of the National Football League.[5] Hackett resigned in April 2010.[6] He did not contest a single championship match.[3]

Results have improved in recent years and they have reached consecutive Leinster Finals in 2015 and 2016.

Current squad

Team as per Westmeath vs Dublin in the Leinster SFC quarter-final, 7 November 2020[contradictory]

No. Player Position Club
1 Jason Daly Goalkeeper St Loman's Mullingar
2 Jack Smith Right Corner Back Skerries Harps
3 Kevin Maguire Full Back Caulry
4 Boidu Sayeh Left Corner Back Rosemount
5 Jamie Gonoud Right Half Back Tyrrellspass
6 Ronan Wallace Centre Back Multyfarnham
7 James Dolan Left Half Back Garrycastle
8 Ray Connellan Midfield Athlone
9 Sam Duncan Midfield Milltownpass
10 David Lynch Right Half Forward St Malachy's
11 Ronan O'Toole Centre Forward St Loman's Mullingar
12 Killian Daly Left Half Forward Mullingar Shamrocks
13 Luke Loughlin Right Corner Forward The Downs
14 John Heslin Full Forward St Loman's Mullingar
15 Kieran MartinINJ[7] (c) Left Corner Forward Maryland
No. Player Position Club
16 Eoin Carberry Substitute Rosemount
17 Anthony McGivney Substitute Multyfarnham
18 Callum McCormack Substitute Maryland
19 Lorcan Dolan Substitute Castledaly
20 Tommy McDaniel Substitute Castleknock
21 Conor Slevin Substitute Tyrrellspass
22 Conor McCormack Substitute Caulry
23 Brandon Kelly Substitute Milltownpass
24 Darren Giles Substitute Coralstown Kinnegad
25 Noel O'Reilly Substitute Milltownpass
26 Alex Gardiner Substitute Garrycastle

RET Player has since retired from the county team.
INJ Player has had an injury which has affected recent involvement with the county team.
WD Player has since withdrawn from the county team due to a non-injury issue.

Current management team

Updated to include changes made ahead of 2021 season:[8]

Players

Notable players

All Stars

Winners in bold. Nominations in plain text.

Honours

References

  1. ^ O'Rourke, Colm (25 July 2004). "Páidí guides midlands army to glory". Sunday Independent. Independent News & Media. Retrieved 25 July 2004.
  2. ^ "Hackett surprise choice in Westmeath". Irish Examiner. 9 September 2009.
  3. ^ a b "Hackett in shock exit". Independent.ie. 15 April 2010.
  4. ^ "Carruth and Rheinisch boost Westmeath". Irish Independent. 16 October 2009.
  5. ^ "Hackett resigns as Westmeath manager". Irish Examiner. 17 April 2010.
  6. ^ "Westmeath manager Hackett steps down". The Irish Times. 17 April 2010.
  7. ^ "Martin vows to fight on after season-ending Achilles injury". Irish Independent. 5 June 2021.
  8. ^ "Cooney announces changes to backroom team for 2021". Westmeath Examiner. 30 December 2020.
  9. ^ a b "Former Dublin ladies coach Robinson joins Westmeath backroom team". Hogan Stand. 29 December 2020. Former Dublin ladies football, Ballymun and Dublin hurling coach Ken Robinson has joined the Westmeath senior football management team. Ex Garrycastle and Westmeath 'keeper Cathal Mullen also part of Jack Cooney's setup for 2021.

External links

This page was last edited on 29 August 2021, at 14:41
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