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The Irish Emigrant - March 4, 1990 | Print |  Email
Thursday, 24 February 2005
Hurricane force winds and torrential rain led to fallen trees, power blackouts and extensive flooding but snow was also a problem; new restrictions on smokers were meant to put an end to smoking on buses, trains, schools, third-level colleges and a number of other places; most asylum-seekers arrived in Shannon via Aeroflot but few were interested in remaining in Ireland; 460 people died on the roads in 1989. Tony O'Reilly invested in Waterford-Wedgwood; and Ireland and Wales were the only two teams to have lost their opening three games in the Five Nations' Championship.

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March 4, 1990 THE IRISH EMIGRANT Issue No.161

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Editor: Liam Ferrie Circulation: 683

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The week started quietly enough with the Irish Times not appearing to know what to make the lead story in Monday's paper. Six different stories were scattered around the front page surrounding a large photograph of the Taoiseach among a group of women. The women were not overawed by his presence and all concentrated on what was being said by a speaker at the Fianna Fail National Women's conference. Tuesday's headline read "Ortega pledges to respect election" so there was still little happening here.

I hope at least US readers were aware that Mr Haughey met with President Bush in Washington. As you would expect, it did not go unnoticed here and was the top story on Wednesday morning. A possible rise in interest rates later in the year created the headlines on Thursday.

The two McGimpsey brothers who tried to get the Anglo-Irish Agreement declared unconstitutional lost their case in the Supreme Court and made the lead on Friday. Disagreements between the Northern Secretary and the Minister for Foreign Affairs about the role of the UDR brought the week to a close.

THREE DIE IN TRAIN CRASH

The evening train from Belfast to Derry ran into a car on an automatic level-crossing outside Ballymena on Thursday. Two occupants of the car and one rail passenger died instantly and another 23 were injured in the accident. The dead were named as Kevin and Marion Fowler, both aged 34, and 17-year-old student Julie Rock. All were from Ballymena. The Fowlers' two children, boys aged seven and nine, were injured. One is described as being in a serious condition, as is one of the five rail passengers who were still in hospital on Saturday evening.

Two of the train's three carriages were derailed and one rolled down a 25-foot embankment. Firemen and railway workers spent the night at the scene trying to free trapped passengers.

An official inquiry is to take place into the cause of the accident. At this stage there is no indication as to whether the car had stalled on the line or if the crossing gates were faulty. Conditions at the time of the accident were poor, with snow on the ground and temperatures below freezing.

THERE'S NO END TO IT

It was Colmcille, I think, who prophesied that Ireland would be completely flooded seven years before the end of the world. His reasoning was that we are too good to be subject to the terrors of Armageddon. With the weather we have been having recently there must be a few people wondering if our time has come. My advice to you is, don't be rushing home to go down with us just yet. Flooding in England is even more serious than here, and there could be no question of the people of that country qualifying for the same privileges as ourselves!

The storm which was forecast for early in the week arrived with a vengeance. Monday morning's news bulletins carried reports of roads throughout the country being blocked with fallen trees and of disrupted ferry services. The North-west took the brunt of the storm with hurricane force 12 winds recorded at Malin Head. About 50,000 homes lost their electricity supply but ESB crews quickly reconnected most of them. That was of little consolation to the 4,000 or people who were still without a supply 24 hours later. An electricity cable fell on a row of terrace houses in the village of Ballymagorry, Co.Tyrone and some of the houses caught fire. The Foyle bridge in Derry was closed due to the high winds.

Other areas had their share of problems and a gust of 100mph was recorded at Baldonell. Derelict houses crashed on to roads in both Belfast and Dublin but fortunately no one was injured. With the wind came heavy rain and even more flooding. Television news carried film of roads under feet of water in Mayo and Limerick City. In Limerick the Shannon overflowed and many houses were flooded. However, similar scenes could have been recorded in many different places. Children near Athenry have to be taken to school by tractor and even then have to take a long detour. A school in Ardrahan has been closed for three weeks as all approach roads are under water. A similar situation exists for a group of householders outside Gort. Only tractors can traverse the roads leading to them. Flying over Athlone last week it appeared that many houses to the south of the town had been built in the middle of a lake.

The wind continued with a few breaks until Wednesday. By lunch time that day it was snowing and for a while here in Galway we had the best part of an inch on the ground. However it stopped after about an hour and quickly melted. Similar weather caused the abandonment of a race meeting in Leopardstown. All parts north seem to have had a substantial fall of snow with counties Monaghan and Cavan having their heaviest fall in years. Hail and sleet took us into Thursday and that night temperatures fell to well below freezing.

Weatherwise this was probably the worst February on record. All parts of the country had gale force gusts on twenty or more days with some exposed parts of the north-west experiencing gales every day. Everywhere had at least twice the normal February rainfall and places in the West, like Galway, experienced three times the average. Claremorris was the wettest getting a total of ten inches. Sunshine was rare, with the people of Belmullet only seeing the sun for a total of 40 hours during the entire month. Rosslare was the sunniest but even there they only had 75 hours. Despite this it was quite mild with temperatures 1 to 2 degrees Celsius above normal. On the 22nd Dublin had its warmest February day since 1945.

HISTORIC MEETING

The British-Irish Parliamentary Group held its first session this week. On Monday, twenty-five TDs and Senators from Dublin joined up with twenty-five British parliamentarians for a three day meeting. Among those on the Irish side were Peter Barry, Garret FitzGerald, Dick Spring, Proinsias de Rossa and David Andrews. There was some criticism that there were no prominent members of the governing party on the British side. The better known names were all members of the Labour Party such as Merlyn Rees and Stanley Orme. Mind you, I don't think there were any senior Fianna Fail or PD members there either. The Unionist Parties declined to be represented and for this were criticised by all sides.

The idea of this forum is simply to shares ideas and concerns. It has no power of any description. A discussion on the Birmingham Six was held behind closed doors. Cameras and microphones were allowed in later and we saw Garret FitzGerald create a little bit of a stir when he suggested that the Irish Government could more effectively represent the North on some European forums.

The next meeting will take place in six months time.

A NEW KIND OF HERO

District Justice Hubert Wine of Dun Laoghaire has come in for praise from practically all sections. Some time ago a 15-year-old girl appeared in court on an assault charge and was remanded until a later date. At a subsequent court appearance the Director of Public Prosecutions asked that the charges be dropped. The District Justice sensed that this was because the State had no place in which to detain the girl if she was found guilty. He refused to drop the case until he was given an assurance that the girl would be taken into care. Initially this assurance was not forthcoming. The whole affair received more and more publicity until last weekend the Departments of Justice, Education and Health were each busy denying that it was their responsibility.

However the publicity eventually had its effect. When the girl again appeared in Court the Eastern Health Board offered to look after her. On Tuesday the Minister for Justice announced that a detention centre for girls in need of care was to be built as a matter of urgency.

I said at the beginning that "practically" everyone had a word of praise for District Justice Wine's humanity. I did not hear that any member of the Governing parties associated themselves with this. But, on the other hand, they had the good sense not to offer any criticism.

A DYING BREED!

Ash Wednesday has become a traditional no-smoking day (for some!) but as if to increase the penance the Minister for Health announced dramatic new restrictions on smokers in time to have the details announced in Wednesday morning's news bulletins. From May 1, smoking will be prohibited in all buses (whether private or run by CIE companies), trains, schools, schoolyards, third level colleges, waiting rooms in bus and railway stations and public access areas in State and semi-State buildings. There are a few exceptions; teachers can have a special room for a quick private smoke, university students (and staff) can indulge their habit in a specially designated area of the canteen or in the bar or private offices, and where there is a bar or a self-contained area on a train smoking will be permitted. In addition to all this, air and ferryports will have to set aside part of the concourse area as a no-smoking zone.

> > > > > > > > > BITS AND PIECES < < < < < < < < <

- Two people died in a five-car pile-up on the Limerick to Ennis road last Sunday night. Those who died were Daisy Gallagher (76) of Newmarket-on-Fergus and Thomas Tuttle (25) of Ennis.

- At the height of last Monday's storm a British Sea King helicopter lifted an injured crewman from a Norwegian fishing vessel 60 miles off the West coast. He was taken to University College Hospital, Galway.

- An Air Corps plane was used to fly a 26-year-old Sligo man to hospital in England were he underwent a heart transplant operation.

- Des O'Malley again called for the release of Limerick man, Martin Foran, from prison in England. Foran was convicted of armed robbery in 1985 but has consistently proclaimed his innocence. He was arrested and questioned by the now disbanded West Midland Special Crime Squad.

- Dublin Corporation is considering a report which calls for the demolition of the gasometer, a well-known landmark in the city for many decades.

- It is becoming quite fashionable to step off Aeroflot planes at Shannon and ask for political asylum. Last weekend there were 28 people staying at the Red Cross centre in Ennis, all claiming refugee status. These included four Sri Lankans who arrived on Sunday. They were taking the place of ten Bulgarians who arrived the previous day and were by then on their way to Gander. For some reason or other few if any ask to stay in this country.

- Garda Laurence Cooleen (39) appeared in court on charges of demanding money with menaces from the managing director of the pharmaceutical company Sterling Winthrop (Ireland). From details of the evidence given we are left to assume that he is being accused of threatening to interfere with some of the company's products. The defendant was remanded on bail.

- A painting, valued at £2m, which was stolen from the home of Sir Alfred Beit in 1986, has been recovered in Turkey. A man, thought to be Scottish, was arrested by the Turkish police.

- In London a Dublin man, John Naughton formerly of Templeogue, was sentenced to two years in prison when he pleaded guilty to handling part of the stolen Beit art collection. This was unrelated to the above story from Turkey.

- The Central Bank warned us that we should not expect any early fall in interest rates and in fact we may see them going up instead of down. At the same time the Building Societies were sending out notification of increases in mortgage repayments. These relate to the last rise in interest rates a month or two ago.

- Fears about interest rates were heightened later in the week when it was revealed that external reserves fell by a further £300m in January. Our reserves have been showing a fairly steady decline in the past year, having dropped 30% or almost £1bn.

- Marahishi Mahesh Yogi took a have a half-page advertisement in the Irish Times to tell us, and in particular the Government, about how he could "create heaven on earth".

- A story which received a fair deal of publicity concerned a 15-

year-old girl who was supposed to have been bundled into the boot of a car in Clane, Co.Kildare and kidnapped by four youths. The background to this was that the girl, from Dublin, was forbidden by her mother from meeting her 19-year-old boy friend. She was sent to stay with another sister, out of harms way in Kildare. The boy friend was said to be among the four youths who carried out the kidnapping. About 48 hours later the girl phoned the Gardai from Scotland. She is now home again and the story of the kidnapping appears not be taken too seriously at this stage.

- On Thursday next An Post issues a series of stamps featuring archaeological treasures including the Ardagh chalice.

- The Irish Times has decided that it needs a full-time correspondent in Germany. Northern editor, Fergus Pyle is moving out there in the coming week. He will spend most of his time between Bonn and Berlin but will also cover developments in Eastern Europe.

- A single-engined Cessna aircraft belonging to the Air Corp got into trouble when its engine failed on Friday. The two pilots brought the plane down in shallow water in the sea at Gormanston, Co.Meath, and were able to wade ashore.

- Three men from Portadown have been charged in connection with an armed bank raid at the AIB Branch at St Stephen's Green on Thursday.

- Repair work to the damaged cargo vessel Tribulus was due to start this weekend. First, the 127,000 ship had to be towed to a safe anchorage at Bere Island.

- 460 people died on the roads here last year. That was three down on the previous year. We never seem to get comparative figures to show how we compare to other countries. The last time I saw such statistics was in an old issue of the Economist and related to 1979. At the time we were at the top of the table with only Austria and Belgium anywhere near us. Road deaths per 100,000 cars in Ireland were more than twice that of the UK, Italy and the US and three times that of Japan.

- The Third World charity Goal organised a 160-mile run from Cork to Dublin this weekend and expected to raise £20,000. There were only twelve entrants in the race which was won by an Iranian in 24 hours 25 minutes. Doina Nugent from Galway was third in a time of about 35 hours. The race favourite, Eleanor Adams from Nottingham in England, had to pull out after 14 miles when she was attacked by a dog. Five runners finished.

- Two women died after being hit by a car while out walking in Carrigtwohill on Saturday night. They were named as Mary Dwyer (66) and Frances Dunlea (70).

> > > > > > > > > NORTHERN NEWS < < < < < < < < <

- A British soldier shot and wounded a joyrider who ran off when challenged. The incident occurred on Monday evening in Lenadoon Avenue, Belfast and came in for severe criticism from an SDLP councillor.

- Two years ago, the leaders of the two main Unionist parties submitted a proposal to the British Government in which they agreed that the Irish Government should have an office in Belfast. The condition was that the territorial claim to the North be dropped from the constitution of the Republic.

- The two unionist brothers, Michael and Christopher McGimpsey, had their case against the Anglo-Irish Agreement dismissed by the Supreme Court. The court decided that the agreement was compatible with the Constitution. According to the Irish Times an appeal to the European Court is now being considered.

- An RPG-7 rocket launcher, a warhead and an automatic rifle were found in a stolen car in Derry. A number of men were arrested.

- A Birmingham publican is now claiming that a policeman, involved in the Birmingham Six case, told him that the Birmingham Six had been beaten and that a gun had been put in the mouth of one of them.

- This year's first full meeting of the Anglo-Irish Inter-

Governmental Conference took place in London on Friday. Minister for Foreign Affairs Gerry Collins had found his way back safely from Lusaka in time to lead the Irish Delegation. There appears to be a significant disagreement between himself and the Northern Secretary, Peter Brook, over the pace of change. What appears to divide them most is the role of the UDR. Mr Brooke was expected to chide Mr Collins over he remarks he made about the regiment on the recent Panorama programme. He believes that such remarks, if they have to be made, should be kept for private meetings between the two men. Afterwards, an unrepentant Mr Collins was still saying that there were "very great" differences between them about the UDR.

- A former member of the UDR was convicted of manufacturing machine-guns for loyalist paramilitaries and will be convicted next week. Another member of the regiment was charged within the last day or two of murdering his father.

> > > > > EMPLOYMENT AND INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS < < < < <

- One hundred jobs have been saved with the take-over of the construction division of Mahon and McPhillips. The receiver for the Kilkenny-based group has sold the division to M.F. Kent of Clonmel. Buyers have expressed interest in other parts of the group.

- Telecom Eireann has 1,500 staff for whom it has no work. This has been brought about by changes in technology. At the moment 500 of its employees are contracted to British Telecom which is currently upgrading its equipment. I reported previously on a plan to cut the work force by 700 through voluntary redundancy and early retirement.

- The Minister for Finance, Albert Reynolds gave details of a further 24 projects at the International Financial Services Centre at Dublin Docks. These are expected to create 300 new jobs. The total number of projects at the Centre now stands at 98 and the jobs total is 1,600. About 400 people are already employed in these projects at temporary locations.

- The plan to create 600 jobs in meat processing at the former Polaroid plant in Newbridge has been abandoned. The promoters say that more detailed market research indicated that the project would not be viable.

- The number out of work fell in February but the seasonally adjusted figure was up by 100. The drop in the number unemployed was down by 2,268 to 231,198. The Government attributed the disappointing figures to the bad weather we had in February and reminded us that the number was 9,000 down on February last year. All the opposition spokespersons attributed it to the total failure of the Government's policies.

> > > > > > > > > POLITICS & POLITICIANS < < < < < < < < <

- Apart from the weather I can give you some more news which will make you happy to be abroad. It is Party Conference time again. This weekend it is Fine Gael which is hogging the airwaves but I have no doubt we will have to endure similar boredom in the weeks to come.

- The Taoiseach availed of last weekend's Fianna Fail Women's Conference in Kilkenny to announce the formation of a second Commission on the Status of Women. The first commission issued its report back in 1972 and had a considerable influence on attitudes in this country.

- Mr Haughey returned from his talks with President Bush expressing satisfaction with the outcome. The two leaders agreed that formal political structures will be established to strengthen the linkages between the US and the EC. This story was well-covered by all sections of the media but it was the Irish Press which carried a story about the Taoiseach being overheard asking for an invitation to Camp David.

- Minister for Foreign Affairs Gerry Collins met with Nelson Mandela in Lusaka on Wednesday. Mr Collins was fulsome in his praise for the part Mr Mandela has played in fighting apartheid. In return Mr Mandela thanked Mr Collins "for the sustained support of the Irish people...".

- Fianna Fail TD, Ned O'Keeffe claims that he was kicked by Joe Sherlock TD of the Workers' Party. Mr Sherlock denies this. What is not in dispute is that there was a heated argument between the two over their respective attempts to be associated with a campaign to have Mallow General Hospital retained.

- Turnover at the National Lottery increased by 27% to £140.4m in 1989. Prize money totalling £68.9 was paid out during the year.

> > > > > > > > > TRAVEL AND TOURISM < < < < < < < < <

- I hope you are all saving up to come home soon. Bord Failte needs you badly as it is forecasting that we will have a total of 3.2 million tourists this year. Some of you had better come back twice in 1992 as the target for that year is 4.2 million.

> > > > > > > > > THE IRISH ABROAD < < < < < < < < <

- RTE radio is bombarding us with the news that we can have requests for friends played on radio in Sydney on St.Patrick's Day. Treasa Davidson will be appearing on a local radio station on that day. We are also told that the programme will NOT be heard here in Ireland.

- Adelaide's leading newspaper, The Advertiser, has awarded a "five star" rating to the Abbey Theatre's production of "The Shadow of a Gunman". The O'Casey play is being staged as part of the 30th Adelaide International Festival.

> > > > > > > > > PROPERTY < < < < < < < < <

- I am sure many of you desperately need a pied-de-terre near Shannon where you could fly in for a restful weekend. Your prayers are answered. For just £168,000 you can own a new two-

bedroom cottage in the grounds of Dromoland Castle. If you think that too cramped, how about a three-bedroomed version for £180,000 or even one with four bedrooms for a mere £200,000?

- For those who want something completely different, I recommend a luxury thatched cottage with a heated swimming pool. This can be found near Lismore in Co. Waterford and because it is not in the grounds of a castle can be had for the bargain price of £110,000. For that you get three bedrooms, three bathrooms, a thatched garage, a tennis court and five acres of lawns.

> > > > > > > > > GALWAY NEWS < < < < < < < < <

- Tarmacadam was being laid on the large complex roundabout under construction at Ballybane this week.

- What I thought was a multi-storey car park on Merchant's Road is in fact a four-storey block which will contain offices, shops and apartments.

- Maybe it was only a joke! The contraption which was passed off as piece of sculpture on the approach road to Quincentennial Bridge has disappeared. There could of course be a number of other reasons for this. It could have been stolen but that is unlikely; the scrap metal value is minimal and no self-respecting art thief would have given it a second glance. It could have been removed for the tourist season; the timing is right and the importance of not offending the tourist widely accepted. If I hear the real reason I will let you know.

- The City Tribune leads with a story of two pubs being closed by the taxman. The Clubhouse in Eyre Square and the Stroll Inn of Salthill have been leased by a company called Flepview Ltd since 1987. The Revenue Commissioners applied for a winding up order for the company and the liquidator moved in on Monday.

- I suppose as the City Tribune has supplied me with many news items over the last three years a bit of free advertising would not be out of place. If you really want to know about what is happening in the city you can now get a copy of the paper at the usual Irish outlets in Boston and New York. It should also be available in Toronto. That is not much use if you are reading this in Sydney, Valbonne or Tokyo.

> > > > > > > > > DEATHS < < < < < < < < <

- The noted historian, author and public servant, Dr Leon O Broin died on Monday at the age of 89. Dr O Broin was a prolific writer whose books primarily dealt with Irish History and in particular the biography of figures like Emmet, Gavan Duffy, Parnell and Collins.

- The French Ambassador to Ireland died on Saturday while riding with the Bray Harriers. It is thought that he suffered a heart attack.

> > > > > > > > > DIGITAL NEWS < < < < < < < < <

- I am sure that the many of you who know him will join me in offering sympathy to George Hewitt on the death of his wife Kate. After many years of serious illness she was again taken into hospital during the week and died on Friday. Her remains were removed to Claregalway Church on Saturday evening and burial took place today at the New Cemetery. Among those who attended the funeral were the many colleagues and friends which George and Kate had made in his sixteen years with company. My sympathy also goes to the couple's son Paul.

- Colm Ruane has been appointed to the position of Ireland Accounting Manager within the Ireland Fiscal Services Group. In his new role Colm will manage accounting groups in both Ballybrit and Clonmel. Colm's most recent position was that of Treasury Operations Manager.

> > > > > > > > > BUSINESS NEWS < < < < < < < < <

EXCHANGE RATES:

IRISH POUND Mar 2 Feb 23

Sterling 0.9393 0.9280

US Dollar 1.5579 1.5845

Deutschmark 2.6640 2.6563

French franc 9.0015 8.9944

Dutch guilder 2.9990 2.9915

Belgian franc 55.32 55.35

Italian lira 1964.98 1964.56

Spanish peseta 170.59 171.17

Japanese yen 233.006 233.02

Swiss franc 2.3446 2.3356

Canadian dollar 1.8600 1.9001

Australian dollar 2.0480 2.0742

- Ray McLoughlin, the chief executive of James Crean, has been appointed to the board of the AIB group.

- Printech International announced a net loss of £3.7m for 1989. The company had a trading profit of £1.8m but there was an extraordinary provision of £5.5m to cover losses in the disposal of its former US subsidiary, Kenmore Press. Turnover was up 26% at almost £16m. Profit for 1988 was £2m on a turnover of £12.5m.

- Ivernia West, an exploration company, acquired a company called Talc Technology for an effective price of £265,000. A day later it learned that Talc's planning application for a quarry and processing plant one mile from Westport had been refused. An appeal to An Bord Pleanala is expected.

- Tony French, the managing director of Wang International Financial in Dublin, said that the new owners of the company, GE Capital, will shortly visit Ireland to announce plans for the Irish operation.

- The long awaited involvement of Tony O'Reilly in the Waterford Wedgewood Group has finally come to pass. On Thursday it was announced that an investment group headed by him is taking a 29.9% stake in the company at a cost of £80m. Half of this comes from the Morgan Stanley investment bank, 9.3% from O'Reilly's own Fitzwilton company and the remainder from other investors said to be "close to Dr O'Reilly".

- Telecom Eireann is to take a 60% stake in Cablelink, the RTE subsidiary which controls most of the cable television systems in the country. RTE is retaining 40% and selling 40% to Telecom for £27m. The remaining 20% is being purchased from an AIB subsidiary.

> > > > > > > > > WEATHER < < < < < < < < <

You must be fed up hearing about the weather this week.

Latest Temperatures: Night 6C............Day 9C

> > > > > > > > > S P O R T < < < < < < < < <

> > > > > > > > > G.A.A. < < < < < < < < <

National Football League - Division I:

Cavan 0-9 Down 2-13

Donegal 1-10 Dublin 0-9

Armagh 1-9 Derry 1-11

Cork 1-15 Kerry 1-10

National Football League - Division II:

Wexford 0-11 Mayo 1-9

Roscommon 0-13 Tyrone 1-10

Antrim 4-8 Meath 1-7

Monaghan 2-10 Louth 1-12

National Hurling League - Division I:

P W D L Pts

Cork 7 5 1 1 11

Donegal 7 5 0 2 10

Down 7 5 0 2 10

Armagh 7 3 2 2 8

Dublin 7 4 0 3 8

Kerry 7 2 0 5 4

Cavan 7 1 1 5 3

Derry 7 1 0 6 2

National Football League - Division II:

P W D L Pts

Roscommon 7 5 1 1 11

Meath 7 4 0 3 8

Tyrone 7 3 2 2 8

Antrim 7 4 0 3 8

Mayo 7 4 0 3 8

Monaghan 7 2 1 4 5

Louth 7 2 0 5 4

Wexford 7 2 0 5 4

Oireachtas Hurling Final:

Galway 1-19 Tipperary 0-8

- Longford stayed at the top of Division II by defeating Galway by 2-8 to 1-8

- Some students involved with the GAA excelled themselves once again. Celebrations after last weekend's Sigerson Cup competition got out of hand and the club house belonging to the Trinity College boat club was seriously damaged. The cost of repairing the premises is estimated at £5,000 but some mementoes were also damaged. A similar incident occurred after the same competition in Cork about five years ago and, as a result, college premises have not been made available to the competitors since. The club house does not belong to the College and the students who run it were not aware of the previous problems.

- Just over a week ago the powers that be in the GAA met and decided to lift the suspensions from all those players who had been banned for taking part in competitions overseas. The two most prominent players to be affected were Tony Keady and Eoin Liston. Keady was selected to turn out for Galway in last Sunday's game against Antrim but failed to turn up.

> > > > > > > > > SOCCER < < < < < < < < <

Premier League:

Limerick 1 Drogheda 1

Bohemians 1 Athlone 0

Derry 3 Galway 0

Drogheda 2 Shelbourne 2

Limerick 1 Cork City 3

St Patricks Ath 3 Shamrock Rovers 1

UCD 0 Dundalk 3

First Division:

Cobh 3 Newcastlewest 0

Home Farm 0 Finn Harps 1

Longford 0 Monaghan 2

Sligo 1 Kilkenny 1

Waterford 2 Bray 1

P W D L F A Pts

Waterford 27 16 5 6 58 28 37

Sligo 27 13 11 3 30 12 37

Kilkenny 27 14 7 6 40 24 35

Bray 26 14 5 7 39 23 33

Home Farm 27 12 5 10 25 17 29

Cobh 27 10 5 12 33 30 25

Finn Harps 26 10 5 11 30 30 25

Longford 26 4 9 13 15 44 17

Newcastlewest 26 5 4 17 23 48 14

Monaghan 27 5 4 18 22 61 14

- For the top teams in Division One the league season has ended. Waterford and Sligo are promoted but have to play off to see which teams wins the title.

Irish League:

Ballymena 5 Linfield 1

Carrick 2 Ards 0

Cliftonville 1 Bangor 2

Coleraine 0 Distillery 3

Crusaders 1 Portadown 2

Glenavon 2 Newry 1

Glentoran 2 Larne 1

P W D L F A Pts

Portadown 19 10 7 2 28 14 37

Glenavon 19 10 5 4 34 24 34

Ballymena 19 10 4 5 32 20 34

Glentoran 19 9 7 3 27 14 34

Linfield 19 10 2 7 40 29 32

Coleraine 19 8 6 5 31 24 30

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- The following are Ireland's fixtures in the qualifying rounds for the 1992 European Cup

October 17, 1990 v. Turkey (h)

November 14, 1990 v. England (h)

March 27, 1991 v. England (a)

May 1, 1991 v. Poland (h)

October 16, 1991 v. Poland (a)

November 13, 1991 v. Turkey (a)

- Manchester United has offered £1m for Alan McLoughlin of Swindon Town. McLoughlin, who has yet to receive a full cap for Ireland, was previously on United's books but was released.

- It is unlikely that John Aldridge will be available for the game against Russia on April 25. His club Real Sociedad has an important game that day.

- Bernie Slevin, the man who has also attracted the attention of the Scottish manager, has opted to play for Ireland.

- Liam Coyle, who quickly became a star for Derry City last season, has had to give up the game through injury.

> > > > > > > > > RUGBY < < < < < < < < <

FRANCE Vs. IRELAND

Parc Des Princes, Paris - Saturday, March 3rd 1990

Reporter: Mike Hughes

Ireland had one thing in common with the French for this encounter, - losing. The Gallic flair had deserted the French, and the little general Fouroux was facing intense criticism from his own people over it. Ireland had rung the changes for this match but the injury to Philip Matthews causing his late withdrawal was a major cause for concern. Ireland had not won a rugby match in France since 1972 and it was 20 years before that that they had recorded their previous victory. Slim pickings indeed and it was 10 years since Ireland had scored a try in Paris, Freddie McLennan holding that dubious honour from the 1980 encounter.

There had been some big changes in the back line with Philip Danagher coming in into the centre position, and Ken Hooks on the wing. Serge Blanco was back in the French fullback slot but rumoured to be a bit out of sorts, but then 50% of Blanco is worth 100% of most other players. The French three-quarter line of Sella, Camberabero, Mesnel, Lagisquet & Co. can be one of the most flamboyant of all lines.

There was no wind worth mentioning and the man in the middle was Mr. McCartney of Scotland. The day was dry and conditions were perfect. Perfect conditions of course were tipped to suit the Frenchmen. The atmosphere was muted somewhat due no doubt to the two French defeats suffered at the hands of the English and the Scottish. Ireland could expect the backlash.

The kick off was taken long and Ireland started with a 22 drop out. Murphy was tested very quickly by the Garryowen but he rose magnificently to the occasion. Ireland cleared but were rapidly returned to their own 22 zone by the boot of Blanco. France opened it up and but for a bit of bad luck in the final pass going forward the Irish line would have been breached. Ireland began to settle but France were winning good lineout possession in an area where Ireland were supposed to be superior. Ireland tried to break a couple of times but poor judgement and handling going forward ended up with France regaining possession and countering dangerously. As the game approached the tenth minute a stupid error by O'Hara, in going over the top in a ruck, gave Mr. Camberabero his chance from 30 metres and he popped it over.

Ireland too tried the long kick off but play was brought back into the centre of the field where this time the French conceded the penalty for an infringement in a ruck situation. Kiernan elected to kick and with a remarkable stroke of the boot put it neatly dead-centre from sixty yards. With this score he was knocking on the door of the record for kicks scored in five-nations championships. It was the eighteenth minute and France were determined to avenge this score. They attacked straight from the kick off and went up into the Irish 22 zone, where Referee McCartney pointed at Mick Kiernan for offside as a ruck developed. This second technical infringement gave a gift opportunity to Didier Camberabero to send France back into the lead. Lhermet the flanker was injured in that ruck but he continued to play for another minute before it became obvious that he was unfit to continue. He left the field to be replace by Eric Melville of Toulon who made history by being the first non-French national to line out for France. Melville had recently become a naturalised French citizen and thus was eligible. His country of origin was South Africa and thus a piece of rugby history was created. Ireland were becoming a bit more creative but cumbersome too, nevertheless. A long pass out the line was grub-kicked by Crossan but it went straight to Blanco. Serge turned to step back into his 22 zone and in the simple turn pulled a muscle and barely got the kick into touch. The great Serge Blanco had to be carried from the field and one had to speculate that this may well be the last time we will see this graceful gazelle on the field of battle. Perhaps another piece of rugby history. This left France with huge problems. Andrieu came into the side at centre with Phillipe Sella taking Blanco's position at full-back.

At this time Ireland were putting a lot of pressure on the French and eventually were awarded a free-kick in a scrum. From the kick Brian Smith tried a drop at goal but it was blocked down. Again Ireland tried to break through but Ahearn knocked on in the tackle to bring it all to naught. Then Ireland surged down the side line and fed the ball out the line to Danagher who tried a totally ridiculous manoeuvre of a drop at goal with a free man to his outside. France raised the siege and brought play down into the Irish half. From a scrum Camberabero made a very exciting and incisive break through to the Irish line and when tackled he fed out to Mesnel who had a simple task to score a brilliant try. The speed of the break left the Irish bewildered and rocked them back into the reality of the situation they were facing. Camberabero added the two points and the score was 12 - 3 with 29 minutes gone.

Ireland applied the pressure and spread the ball wide along the line to Murphy who grub-kicked to the corner behind the backs of the French defenders. Crossan hared down the line dived on the ball with a defender in close attention. The referee did not allow the try but instead awarded Ireland a penalty for an earlier off-side by the French. The TV action replay showed Crossan clearly making the try but it was split second stuff and the ref. was possible unsighted. Kiernan entered the history books after the kick and the score was 12-6 with 34 minutes elapsed.

The French went for the long kick off and Brian Smith replied with a magnificent return. Ireland worked their way back up towards the French 22 zone and were awarded a penalty for elbow work in the ruck by Rodriguez. It was an easy one for Kiernan but on his weak side and he botched it. Ireland still kept up good pressure and once when Smith sent a crossfield kick to the Irish winger it was Hontas the French defender who knocked on a simple catch. From the scrum Mannion broke with the ball but again knocked on going forward. The ref. had had enough and blew it up.

First off Ireland should have been at least on level terms and had done enough to earn it. It was stupid technical errors that schoolboys don't make that caused the deficit, but it was appalling butterfingers and wrong options going forward that had cost the most. I must question the attacking approach of some of the players in particular Ahearn and Danagher. Ireland had not had the lineout domination that was expected. Neil Francis was playing quite well on his return to the colours but the backrow bereft of Matthews was definitely off-colour. O'Hara tried hard however. I felt that Ireland were in with a chance of taking this one if they could maintain their momentum and avoid their last quarter wilt. France had gone through terrible trauma with the almost complete disruption of their threequarters line. Yet they had managed to hold out the Irish and score a truly brilliant try of their own.

Ireland kicked off the second half and from the ruck just inside the French half they gave away a penalty. It was more angled than Kiernan's first half effort but Camberabero had a go and when the juices are flowing everything goes right. It was 15-6 and the half had hardly started. France then ran Ireland ragged up to the Irish line almost but a determined defence forced the roosters back up to half-way. In the ninth minute Ireland were penalised for lineout obstruction and Camberabero had a skew shot that hit the post and went in, it was that kind of a day. He could get the ball over the cross bar no matter what went wrong. 18-6 then and it was all uphill for the Irish.

Ireland kept trying and again they were awarded a penalty on the 35 metre line but again Kiernan missed the opportunity. Good Irish pressure was almost rewarded when Smith executed a nice looping movement and sent Danagher away. At a vital moment Danagher hesitated and took the wrong option but fed Ahearn who then linked with Crossan whose grub-kick brought play up to 10 yards from the French line. Again it was pure lack of directness in approach going forward by Danagher that cost the try scoring opportunity. Irish pressure was rewarded by another penalty in the 18th minute on the 10-yard-line in the centre of the park. This time Kiernan connected and raised the flags to make it 18-9.

Shortly after this Ireland gave away another penalty about 30 metres out which Camperabero elected to kick to the utter disgust of the French crowd. He was soundly booed and hooted at by his own supporters as he took the kick but it went straight and true. Further pressure brought Ireland right up to the French line and Brian Smith was unlucky in the final pass going forward that would have sent Hooks in for a fine try. This Irish movement was roundly applauded by the whole stadium. Shortly after this Ireland were awarded a penalty for an infringement close to the French line and Kiernan couldn't miss from the range. 21-12 then with 14 minutes left.

There was still a lot to play for and the Irish had done well but the French were in determined mood and went on a fierce raid on the Irish line. A ruck developed on the Irish five yard line and before the Irish could settle the ball was fed out to the Biaritz Express, one Lagisquet, who glided through for a simple and graceful try. For once Camperabero got it wrong and missed the added points to leave the score 25 - 12 with ten minutes left in the game. The game was now out of reach of the Irish and with two minutes remaining Mesnel put the icing on the French cake with a try under the posts which Camperabero converted. The final score was 31-12.

The Irish woes continue with a a whitewash contest between the two three-time losers Ireland and Wales looming at Landsdowne Road in three weeks. It was a better performance from the Irish with at least some creativity in evidence from behind the scrum. I have no doubt that Matthews was sorely missed. The "novelty" of going forward with the ball will have to be overcome. Ahearn was caught out time and again in this mode. Danagher lacks the guile for this level in the centre position. The better points were Brian Smith kicking extraordinarily well, Neil Francis going forward but not in his lineout display, O'Hara in the loose was tireless. The scrum was steadier making the second phase easier for the first time this season. All that is left now is to close the loop on the season that looks like marking the nadir of the fortunes of the game in Ireland. I'll be back in three weeks to report on the final game of the season.

Five Nation Championship:

Wales 9 Scotland 13

France 31 Ireland 12

Table: P W D L F A Pts

England 3 3 0 0 83 13 6

Scotland 3 3 0 0 47 19 6

France 4 2 0 2 67 78 4

Ireland 3 0 0 3 22 67 0

Wales 3 0 0 3 28 76 0

League games: Ballina 13 Creggs 12

Club Games:

St.Mary's 13 NIFC 12

DLSP 4 Corinthians 13

Blackrock 9 Shannon 20

Old Belvedere 31 Old Crescent 17

Old Wesley 16 Garryowen 14

CIYMS 10 Bective Rangers 24

Dungannon 6 Ards 28

Bangor 4 Wanderers 12

Ballynahinch 12 Collegians 20

Instonians 12 Malone 23

Omagh 12 City of Derry 23

Waterpark 19 Portadown 10

Dolphin 16 Galwegians 16

Young Munster 3 Ballymena 10

Terenure 11 Clontarf 28

Skerries 0 Lansdowne 22

- Last week saw Constitution and Shannon qualify for the first division of the new National League. One other Munster club, probably Garryowen will join them. The two Munster clubs to join the second division have still to be decided.

> > > > > > > > > SPORTS SHORTS < < < < < < < < <

- SNOOKER: Alex Higgins reached the final of he British Open but went down 10-8 to Canadian Robert Chaperon. He still collected Stg£45,000 for his trouble.

- GOLF: Christy O'Connor, jnr, came fourth in the Mediterranean Open and won Stg£20,000 in the process. He was three strokes behind the winner, Ian Woosnam. At one stage O'Connor was within a stroke of the lead but three-putted the last hole. The tournament was cut to 54 holes when rain and wind forced the third round to be called off.

> > > > > > > > > SAILING < < < < < < < < <

The Whitbread Round the World Race

Reporter: Tom Foote @ILO

On Thursday another seven yachts, including NCB Ireland, crossed the finishing line in Punta del Este, Uruguay. Of the two other yachts in maxi Class A, Liverpool Enterprise was expected to finish late yesterday and Martela was still floating upside-down off the coast of Argentina after capsizing on Monday last.

Three of the most recent arrivals finished late on Wednesday: Gatorade, The Card and NCB Ireland. They were followed in the early hours of yesterday morning by Belmont Finland, Fortuna, British Defender, and Fazisi. There were only 42 minutes between NCB, Belmont Finland, Fortuna and British Defender, after these four yachts had a highly competitive last day at sea.

Joe English reported that the last leg was not as heavy as expected, but was tiring nonetheless because of the high proportion of reaching. "Even the notorious Cape Horn was like a summer's day in Ireland," he said. At the time they rounded NCB was only 10 boats lengths behind Fazisi, with The Card four miles ahead and Belmont 15 miles ahead. Fazisi and Belmont were subsequently overtaken after a spell of heavy weather reaching in 54 knots of breeze, conditions which seem to suit the Irish yacht.

English also reported that repairs to the boom which broke earlier on this leg were successful and were becoming routine. By finishing in ninth place NCB has improved her performance considerably in spite of further difficulties with the boom. Harry Harkimo of Belmont Finland said that the Southern Ocean this time was "nothing like the travel brochures", and in mainly light reaching winds he had hardly used a spinnaker. ( Judging conditions over the past few weeks all the Southern Ocean gales are right here on the west coast of Ireland!!!) On reflection, Harkimo said that although this was his third time around the Horn, it was the worst Southern Ocean leg he had ever had. He summed up his feelings by saying, "I hope that I never have to go back there again." He thought that the biggest mistake they had made aboard Belmont was off the Falkland Islands, when they were beating in light airs in close company with Gatorade and NCB and The Card. Faced with a situation in which they were making only 0.2 knots towards the finish, they tacked in order to make their SMG 4 knots. This meant splitting away from the others, and unfortunately for them, the others got a new wind first and Belmont was left well behind.

ARGOS POSITIONS @1457 GMT 1 MARCH

1. STEINLAGER

2. F & P

3. ROTHMANS . . .

9. NCB IRELAND

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* This newsletter has been prepared primarily from *

* press and radio reports. It should not be taken *

* as representing the views of my employer or those *

* of other companies within the group. *

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