The Roscommon County Board of the Gaelic Athletic Association (GAA) (Irish: Cumann Lúthchleas Gael, Coiste Chontae Ros Comáin) or Roscommon GAA is one of the 32 county boards of the GAA in Ireland, and is responsible for Gaelic games in County Roscommon.
|Irish:||CLG Ros Comáin|
|Dominant sport:||Gaelic football|
|Ground(s):||Dr Hyde Park, Roscommon|
|County colours:||Primrose and royal blue |
(black and green until 1935)
|Football Championship:||Sam Maguire Cup|
|Hurling Championship:||Nicky Rackard Cup|
|Ladies' Gaelic football:||Brendan Martin Cup|
|Camogie:||Kay Mills Cup|
The county board is also responsible for the Roscommon county teams.
The county football team was the third from the province of Connacht to win an All-Ireland Senior Football Championship (SFC), following Galway and Mayo. It competes in the Connacht Senior Football Championship, which it has won 23 times. The team won back-to-back All-Ireland SFC titles in 1943 and 1944.
Roscommon were a glamour team of the 1940s, winning back to back All Irelands, and have contributed some of the great personalities to GAA history including 2 Presidents - Dan O'Rourke (1946–49) and Dr Donal Keenan (1973–76).
Roscommon's rise from Junior status to Senior All-Ireland champions in the four years leading up to 1943 was one of the great romances of its time. In the All Ireland final they drew with Cavan, before winning the replay with two quick goals from Frankie Kinlough and Jack McQuillan. Kinlough scored the goal and Donal Keenan the points the following year when Roscommon beat Kerry. Roscommon were captained by Jamesie Murray from Knockcroghery.
Legend tells how Roscommon lost a six-point lead in the final three minutes of the 1946 All-Ireland Senior Football Championship final against Kerry, Tom O'Connor and Paddy Kennedy scoring the goals. Roscommon were beaten in the replay (Gerry Dolan made one of the greatest saves in Croke Park history against Laois in that year's semi-final). The injured team-captain, Jimmy Murray, was having blood wiped from his face to "look right" for the presentation when Kerry struck for two late equalising goals. Defeats in 1947, 1952 and 1953 semi-finals ended the party.
The 1940s successes were the pinnacle of Roscommon's achievements. They also reached the final in 1962. That year was memorable for they were losing the Connacht final to Galway by 5 points when Roscommon keeper Aidan Brady swung on the crossbar, breaking it in two. During the 15-minute wait to get it replaced, Roscommon moved the great Gerry O'Malley to midfield in a re-organisation and he inspired their comeback to enable them to win the Connacht Championship. However, Kerry, once again, led by the great Mick O'Connell defeated them in the All-Ireland final thanks in no small way to an off-the-ball incident which led to O'Malley being stretchered off very early in the game. Roscommon's next period of success came in the late 1970s when they won 4 Connacht titles on the trot from 77-80. they reached the final in 1980 against Kerry. They looked like causing an upset when John "Jigger" O'Connor's 35th-second goal helped them to an early 1-2 to 0-0 lead, but this was the Kerry team regarded as the greatest in history, and they eventually won by 1-9 to 1-6. A series of minor championships (1981, 1984, 1989 and 1992), and an All-Ireland Under-21 final in 1982, showed the impact of that success and in 1990 and 1991 Roscommon emerged from Connacht again, succumbing to Meath by a single point in the 1991 All Ireland semi-final.
Nine unsuccessful seasons followed before, in 2001, Roscommon regained the Connacht title following a brilliant win and performance over eventual All-Ireland champions Galway and a very dramatic end-of-match victory over Mayo. However, they failed to make any further progress in the 2001 All Ireland Championship and the decade that followed was amongst the least successful in the team's history.
On the field, outside of a very exciting run in 2003, the senior team failed to record any notable successes since their 2001 Connacht Championship title win until 2010. The success of the county's Minor team in winning the All-Ireland title in 2006 offered hope, however.
In 2010 Roscommon captured their 20th Senior Connacht football title. In the first round they defeated London in Ruislip 0-14 to 0-6. In the semi final played in Dr Hyde Park Roscommon beat Leitrim 1-13 to 0-11. In the final played in McHale Park, Roscommon overcame favourites Sligo on a scoreline of 0-14 to 0-13. Roscommon were subsequently beaten in the All-Ireland Quarter Final in Croke Park by Cork 1-16 to 0-10.
On 5 September 2018, after 3 years in charge Kevin McStay stepped down as Roscommon manager, "I feel I have brought the team as far as I can at this stage and a new voice and direction is now required" he said on his departure. Anthony Cunningham, former Galway hurler and hurling manager took over from McStay. Roscommon won the Connacht title in Cunningham's maiden year at the helm, defeating Galway in Salthill to claim their 23rd JJ Nestor Cup.
Roscommon's sole appearance in an All-Ireland Senior Hurling Championship (SHC) semi-final occurred in 1910. Tipperary defeated the county by a scoreline of 10 goals to one point. The county defeated Wexford in the 1984 Centenary Cup. Roscommon won an All-Ireland Senior B Hurling Championship in 1994 and an All-Ireland Intermediate Hurling Championship in 1999. The county competed in the newly formed Christy Ring Cup in 2005 and 2006 but was relegated to the Nicky Rackard Cup after poor performances. Roscommon won the 2007 Nicky Rackard Cup Final, defeating Armagh by a scoreline of 1–12 to 0–13. Roscommon won the 2015 Nicky Rackard Cup, again defeating Armagh in the final. Both games occurred at Croke Park.
The Roscommon county ladies' football team once managed to give away a goal to their opponents in a home game in Kiltoom when their players were off the pitch.
Roscommon have the following achievements in ladies' football.
Roscommon won the Nancy Murray Cup in 2009. Four Roads reached the 2004 All Ireland junior club final, and again in 2005. Oran won the Caithlín Ní Thoimín Shield at Féile na nGael in 1980 and 1982, the Division 3 shield in 1989 and 1992 and the Coiste Chontae an Chláir Shield in 2004. Four Roads went on to win the All Ireland junior club final in 2010 beating Corofin of Clare 1-09 to 0-06 and competed in the 2012 All Ireland junior club final.
- "Roscommon celebrate". The Irish Times. 13 August 2007.
- "Michael Kelly delivers killer blow for Roscommon". Irish Examiner. 8 June 2015.
- "'It was very bizarre' - Roscommon recover after conceding goal with players not on pitch". Irish Independent. 31 May 2021.
- 2009 Jun A Roscommon 2-8 Armagh 3-5 report on Camogie.ie
- 2004 Junior club final Leitrim 4-13 Four Roads 0-8 Four Roads report in Irish Independent
- 2005 junior club final Leitrim 1-8 Four Roads 1-4 report in Irish Independent and Irish Times
- All-stars on camogie.ie
- "Final goal for camogie". Irish Independent. Independent News & Media. 29 March 2010. Retrieved 29 March 2010.
- National Development Plan 2010-2015, Our Game, Our Passion information page on camogie.ie, pdf download (778k) from Camogie.ie download site
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