Sligo U15 Football squad visit to Kerry
Sligo U15 Football squad visit to Kerry

During the mid term break the Sligo U15 Development squad travelled to the Kingdom of Kerry for a three day coaching camp. It involved attending a number of different coaching sessions with GAA personalities from Kerry, motivational talks and challenge games. This trip was to recognise and build upon the commitment shown by the U15 squad in 2017. It was also an educational experience for each player both on and off the pitch. In total, 43  players travelled. Here is how the few days unfolded.

The squad left on Thursday and made the 4.5 hour journey to the Banna Beach Resort (our base for the four days). Here we were greeted and made at home by William Murphy, who manages this excellent facility. The squad had access to the Swimming pool, games room, astro pitch and catering facilities. Big thank you to Peadar Niland for arranging this for the squad.

Each morning, all of the squad were up early to cook their own breakfast and keep their residences clean and tidy. On Friday morning, we travelled to Caherslee GAA pitch, where they had both a training and a Q&A session with twice All Ireland winning Kerry Minor Football manager, Peter Keane. The lads picked up some quality information from Peter and we were grateful for lending us his expertise and time. After the session the squad had lunch before they departed for John Mitchells GAA pitch for a game with Mounthawk secondary school. The lads won the game with 21 players all taking part. We are indebted to the Kerry Games Manager, Donal Daly, who organised opposition and pitches for us over the weekend. When the game was over we travelled back to Banna for a recovery session, dinner and a memorable and very entertaining quiz night. 

On Saturday morning the squad had an inspiring Q&A session with Kieran Donaghy from the Kerry Senior team. He was both generous and engaging with his insights. The lads got to ask him loads of questions. He was superb with the whole group and was unfussed when there was a big demand for selfie photos. We really appreciate the time Kieran invested with our squad. Afterwards the squad travelled to Fossa GAA Grounds to play St Brendans Secondary school. The other members of the squad all took part in this game and recorded another victory. Once again it was back to Banna for a recovery session and dinner. In the evening we travelled into Tralee to watch Kieran Donaghy and his Tralee Warriors teams mates play UCD in the National Basketball League. This rounded off a fantastic few days, with everyone up early on Sunday morning to return home.

A number of people made this trip possible and it's important that they are acknowledged and thanked.
- Peadar Niland for organising and arranging Banna Holiday resort
- Sligo GAA County board for supporting the trip 
- Padraig Clancy for arranging sponsorship and background work in making it happen
- Aurivo Co-operative for generous sponsorship of breakfast food 
- Gerry Mullen for sponsoring milk 
- Gabriel Kelly, John Gorman and Johnson,Mooney and O'Brien for sponsoring bread and cookies
- Ger Canning of Cannings Sligo for sponsoring pizzas.
- Des Henry for putting together a superb quiz 
- Damien Eames for his kind donation
- The coaches involved with squad for giving up there precious time to travel with squad and mind them.
- Every single parent and guardian who supported the trip. Without it the trip would not have been possible. 

Thank you all for giving these lads this fantastic opportunity.

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