My Favourite 15’ – Tir na nOg’ by Nicky Bones

Today we look at Nicky Bonnes, favourite 15 Tír na nÓg hurlers. Nicky is an active member of the club and current senior Camogie manager.

Nicky made his debut for Tír na nÓg Seniors as a 17 year old against Glenarm in 1992 who were then a very strong Intermediate side. 

If your club has not submitted a ‘Favourite 15’ hurlers we would appeal to you to appoint someone to select their ‘Favourite 15’ and send it to or to

Nicky Bonnes Favourite 15 hurlers

“The following favourite 15 player should probably have more players from the 1985 Junior championship winning team but I didn’t play with them, so all the players (apart from Colm Martin) have played senior hurling from 1992 to the present day. During that time the team went from playing in the lower leagues against Mitchel’s in Poleglass to the highly competitive Division 2 against the likes of Rossa and Portaferry. The team also played in three Junior championship finals, winning one, won an Ulster League championship and also lost one. They were promoted three times due to winning the league or a league restructure.”

My favourite 15 from 1992- present (Nicky Bonnes)

1- Rudi Graham- very dependable goalkeeper who had great hands and pin point accuracy with puck outs. His ability to pull off unbelievable saves always lifted the team and the crowd. Just keeps out Johnny McGuckian and Leo Heatley. 

2- Colm Martin- lots of defenders to choose from but ‘Sam’ gets the nod for his unswerving commitment to promoting the game at the club over the last 30-35 years. He has coached numerous players and always coached the game to be played in the proper manner and correct spirit. Many players owe a great debt to Colm and Jim McNally RIP. 

3- Sean Devlin- (Beamers) mountain of a man at full back who was unbeatable under a high ball. I learned a lot from positioning watching the maestro at play. When he called ‘my ball’ invariably very few stood a chance. 

4- Colm Hassan- teak tough defender who left it all out on the pitch. No nonsense on the pitch, absolute gentleman off it. 

5- Daryl Heatley RIP- Rolls Royce of a player. Had it all, skill, vision and stick work. Impeccable reader of a game. Captained the Junior championship winning team in 2002. 

6- Colm Duffin- Represented the county in various positions and has consistently been one of the top performers over the past 20 years. Can play any position to the highest of standards. Delivered a rousing speech as captain after the Ulster League final win over Lisbellaw in 2013.

7- Caoimhin Duffin- quiet, unassuming player who always does the simple things right. Distribution of the ball is one of the strongest aspects of his game and always had a knack of popping up in the right position to drive another attack. 

8- Phelim McCloskey- definitely the least skilful player of this 15, but what he lacked in skill he made up for in determination and strength. Provided the required ‘steel’ and made no apologies for it. Powerhouse midfield player with great leadership qualities. 

9- Tommy Devlin- could have played in any number of positions. Strong under the high ball and came up with big performances in championship games, hitting vital scores when backs were against the ball. 

10- Vincent Martin- absolute flying machine who would always take the game to the opposition. Blistering pace and unselfish play would prove decisive in many games during his career. 

11- Michael Magill- without a doubt the best player over the last 30 years.  Had it all and would rise to the occasion for club and county. Probably played best out on the wing however this team should be built around him. 

12- Kevin Sheerin- ‘Skimper’ has consistently produced the goods over the past 15 years. Deadly accurate free taker and excellent under the high ball. 

13- Rory Bonnes- deadly forward who will always remembered for scoring a wonder goal to win the last championship final win in 2002. Had broken his ankle earlier in the year and came off the bench to inspire a famous victory over St. Brigid’s, Cloughmills. 

14- Antony Brady- (Gubba) small in stature but big in heart. Low centre of gravity and a quick turn of pace bamboozled many defenders. Knowledge of the game and ability to influence games made him a game changer. 

15- Shane Donnelly- affectionately known as ‘Animal,’ set up countless attacks by dropping the shoulder and could beat any player. One of the best players in the league when he was at his peak.  Unplayable when he was in form. 


No Tír na nÓg hurling team is complete without mentioning the great Vincent Kerr. He would walk into any team however he misses out as he hasn’t played in the last 30 years. Still deserves an honourable mention. 

Brendan ‘Ennie’ Kerr- tenacious defender is unlucky to miss out on the starting 15 but would do a job covering anywhere in defence. 

Mark McConnon- went to Ballycastle and had a successful time there. Briefly returned in 2001 but had retired before the championship win in 2002. Strong player who represented the county. 

Sean Duffin- Sean shows all the promise and definitely has what it takes to be one of the top players for the next generation of players. Has been unlucky with injuries. Currently represents the county at senior level. 

Christy Sheerin – magnificent fielder of the ball. Tactically and technically very gifted. Injuries and the pressures of being a dual player affected the amount of service he could provide.

Croke Park regulation for next week’s restart

Tomás Ó Riain GAA GAA
Ard Stiúrthóir Páirc an Chrócaigh, Croke Park,
Baile Átha Cliath 3 Dublin 3
Guthán +353 1 865 8600 Telephone +353 1 865 8600
10ú Iúil 2020
Maidir Le: Match Regulations

A Chara,
Please find attached an outline of match regulations for Counties ahead of a return to competitive games
on July 17th as approved by An Coiste Bainistíochta on July 9th. These regulations can be used as a basis
for your own Match Regulations; additional regulations can be added if required.
Below is a summary of the proposed changes form the current Inter-County Match Regulations which
most Counties base their regulations on:
• Only a maximum of 24 players (starting 15 and nine-panel members) shall be allowed within the
pitch enclosure during the playing of the game. Panel members can rotate between inside and
outside of the pitch enclosure. As per rule, there is no limit on the size of a club match day panel.
• A maximum of five (football) & seven (hurling) Team Officials shall be allowed within the pitch
enclosure during the playing of our games. It is suggested that these should be:
• One Bainisteoir
• One Maor Fóirne
• Two Medics
• One Club Official
• Two Maor Caman (Hurling Only)
• Subs and Team officials should be positioned on opposite sides of the pitch to allow for
government guidelines around social distancing to be followed.
• The use of Dugouts is discouraged, but they may be used provided the government guidelines
around social distancing are followed (currently 2m between each person)
• Maor Uisce (Water Carriers) are not permitted in either Football or Hurling.
• One water break will take place between the 15th & 20thminute in each half at the referee’s
• Two Maor Caman (Hurley Carriers) are permitted in hurling, but are not allowed to carry water
into the players and may enter the field of play only with a replacement hurley when necessary.
• The referee has the authority during the game to send any person in breach of the regulations to
the stand/outside the pitch enclosure and such person cannot be replaced.
• Covid-19 guidelines issued to players and team officials.
• CCCC will draw up new Inter-County Match Regulations in advance of the Inter-County
Championship based on the latest Covid-19 guidelines – in the interim, the guidelines in the
attached should pertain. Counties should also note that as Covid-19 continues to be a fluid
situation, C.C.C.C may recommend further changes to deal with particular issues in the coming
Is mise le meas,
Tomás O Riain
Ard Stiúrthóir

My favourite 15 – Loughgiel

By PJ O’Mullan

PJ O’Mullan, the man who managed the Shamrocks to their second All Ireland title in 2012, selects his favourite fifteen players from 1990 up to the present day.

This team is picked from 1990 onwards and some players not in the team were finishing their career at this stage. If a team prior to 1990 was picked they would be starting. There are many other great players who have played for Loughgiel and would be worthy of making this team but I can only pick 15. No offence intended on selections.

1 – Damian Quinn – This was an easy pick. DD as he is known is the best keeper I have seen in my time. His leadership was second to none and he was able to organize those in front of him with ease. Fantastic in the air and could pick a pass from his puck puts that started many attacks. Superb shot stopper and his commitment and dedication in training and throughout the playing season was relentless. Could have played in goal for any team in Ireland

2 – Paul Gillan – Ding as he known to everyone is the epiphany of a club hurler. Completely dedicated on and off the pitch and liked things to be done the proper way. Great in the air and very tight marking. Could play anywhere in the defence and has even been known to score against his own team. Tough and uncompromising when needed.

3 – Neilly McGarry – Playing fullback is never easy. Players are often asked to mark the opposition’s marquee players. This is where Neilly excelled. A complete no nonsense player who was able to stop/spoil and frustrate many a good player from playing. Relished all the challenges thrown at him over the years and came out on top of many a battle against various opponents. Good to see him back playing again.

4 – Eoin McCloskey – Teak and tough would describe Roadstone with all the skill on top of that. Great vision and went about his business with little fuss. Did the simple things well. Had some serious injuries over his career but came back stronger. Excellent defender

5 – Johnny Campbell – One of our clubs great leaders and players. Completely focused and had a savage desire to win. Would not have won county final in 2010 without him. Inspired his team mates and put in a fantastic display. Had the honour of captaining Loughgiel for their 4 in a row and all Ireland victory and then in his first year as manager won a county title. Would not have asked his team mates to do anything he would not have done.

6 – Dominic McKinley – A fantastic player and warrior. Woody was at the heart of Loughgiel and Antrims defence through late 80’s and early 90’s. Complete worker and grafter doing a lot of dirty work. Could mix it up when needed and was great at organizing them around him. Won an all Ireland club medal as a forward but played mostly in defence after that

7 – Martin Scullion – Not only an excellent defender but a great man to have about the team. Excellent under the high ball – who will ever forget the two late catches against Cushendall in 2011 final and his performance in all Ireland club final was sensational. Great positional sense and was able to dictate play. Had good vision and set up many attacks.

8 – Barney McAuley – Probably could have selected Barney in several positions but wouldn’t want him over analysing it. Played full of confidence in every game. Ghosted into positions no one else would dream of always available for the pass. Never afraid to shoot and always popped up for scores at vital times in games. Excellent trainer and leader and always tried his best.

9 – Sean Paul McKillop – Again could have picked SP in several positions. Fantastic under the high ball, very strong in the tackle and had skill in abundance. Very versatile and played in every position in the field. Had ability to take many scores.

10 – Aidan McCarry – A real class player. Had loads of skill and was accurate from play and placed balls. Unlucky not to get an all star between 1989 and 1991. Scored many important goals and won an all Ireland club in 1983. Looked after his team mates and was able to mix it when needed. Would make most teams in his time.

11 – Declan Laverty – Could not have picked a team without this man. The link man during my time as manager, Got a bad hit in 2010 county final but recovered enough to come on as second half sub to inspire his team to victory. Was the link man in so many victories. His ability to win dirty ball and lay it off for others to score was unmatched. Unselfish, dogged, skilful and the ultimate team player. Deserves all he gets from the game.

12 – Eddie McCloskey – Played the game with complete freedom and abandonment. His vision and ability to see things on the pitch before they developed enabled him to play like a quarterback – spraying passes everywhere. His pace along with his vision enabled him to open up defences effortlessly – two passes in particular both to Liam Watson – one v Na Pairsaigh where he soloed out of defence and sprayed a 60 yard pass and the other in all Ireland club final that took out Coolderry’s whole defence that led to a goal. As well as all the above regularly chipped in with 5/6 scores in most games. Totally perfectionist – hence can be moody if things didn’t go as he visioned them.

13 – Benny McCarry – Again another player who played with great freedom and flair. Had wonderful vision and skill and a fantastic first touch. Was aware of players running of the ball and was able to pluck the ball from places he shouldn’t have been. Knew where the goalposts were and had often tried things not in the coaching manual. Great team player

14 – Liam Watson – In my opinion the best of them all. Liam had everything. If you needed a goal just get the ball to him. Even on days when the ball was not running his way he still had the confidence and ability to stand up when needed – two in particular times 2011 Antrim final v Cdall penalty and V St Thomas with last puck of ball beating 12 players. Wonderful free taker and his performances in all Ireland campaign of 2011/2012 were simply stunning. Would have made any team in Ireland. Excellent trainer…when there and just simply a fantastic hurler/player.

15 – Brendan McGarry – Chopper was unlucky not to be around in a different era. Played through a barren spell in terms of winning championships but carried our forward line through this period. Top scored in many championships in that period and was equally accurate from play and placed balls. Was not scared to shoot and could score from anywhere.

My subs can count themselves very unlucky and would make most teams
Nial Patterson
Declan McKillop
Joey Quinn
Joey Scullion
Shay Casey
Brendan Laverty
Dominic McMullan

My favourite 15 – Naomh Pol

Naomh Pol by Damian Murray.

I have played, coached and watched Naomh Pol hurl over many decades. Selecting this team has been equally full of joy and torture as every one of those 40 plus years. I am aware many people will have conflicting views but just remember for every name you want added you have to take one of these great men out. The best hurlers let their hurls do the talking. No need for flowery language, every man summed up in 5 words or less.

1 – Paul Burns. Could play anywhere, and did.

2 – Bobby Hamill. Thou shalt not pass.

3 – Micky Glover. Much more than his strike.

4 – Declan Gamble. Skill and brain. Mr Dependable.

5 – Stevie Rooney. 3 A’s. Ability.Attitude. Application.

6 – Ciaran Killaleagh. Man of steel.

7 – Stephen Ramsey. Style and toughness. Class act.

8 – Micky Sullivan. Skill and speed to burn.

Jim Nelson lifts the Intermediate Cup after St Paul’s victory in 1978

9 – Jim Nelson. Hurling God. Enough said.

10 – Barry Burns. Scoring machine. Quiet and understated?

11 – John Crossey. Skill and grit personified.

12 – Paul Donnelly. A defender’s nightmare. Never stopped.

13 – Jimmy O Neill. Master of the breaking ball.

14 – Aidan Gallagher. Simply give him the ball.

15 – Paul McStravick. Catch. Break the tackle. Goal!

Subs. Everyone else who has lifted a hurl and entered the field in Red and White hoops.

My favourite 15 – Carey Faughs

by PJ Hill

Carey’s favourite 15 is chosen by a man who has seen a lot of Faughs teams down the years. PJ Hill includes players that span almost 60 years of hurling in the parish.

1 – Chris McCormick

A very good shot stopper and his puck-outs were lengthy and well directed

2 – Danny McKinley (RIP)

A very hard tackler and a player who led by example, and a very talented hurler

3 – Alex McVeigh

A solid man of the position who shielded his goalie at a time when they could be tackled

4 – Sean McCambridge

Another who was sure and steady in his back position and always a good man to clear the danger

5 – James McCouaige

Of a more recent generation of hurlers. A man who could be slotted into many positions

6 – Joe Butler (RIP)

He always impressed with his excellent reading of the game and his ability to stop man good forwards

7 – Hugh Osborne

A solid defender who always came out on top. He left the game earlier after he emigrated as a young man

Carey 1980s

8 – James McVeigh

A player who was famous for getting ‘stuck in’. He was a great team leader and one of the club’s longest serving players who also represented his county.

9 – Liam McLoughlin

A very skilful player who was also full of running, and a man who always kept himself in great shape

10 – John McVeigh

A player whose talent shone through and one who impressed all who saw him play. He was once voted North Antrim Player of the Year

11 – Des McNeill

Probably one of the club’s best ever players, he represented his county for a number of years. He moved away to foreign shores to work but was often called back to play in big Championship games

12 – Vinnie McCaughan

Described as a very crafty player who gave many defenders a hard time. He was a great free taker who served the club well over the years

13 – James ‘Rocket’ Black

One of a number of very talented young players coming through in the club. A good leader and a top class free taker.

14 – Cahal McAuley

A strong physical player who was always a handful for the opposing defence. Also capable of grabbing the vital scores when required.

15 – Conor McBride

One of the youngest crop of present day players who is blessed with great skill and pace and one who can take vital scores, like in last year’s Intermediate Championship semi-final when his two goals sealed the win over Sarsfields.

The Carey team who played Glenarm in the 1984 Feis in Glenariffe