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Remember the Game: Hurling heavyweights battle in 2001 football final

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Camross who defeated Clough-Ballacolla in the ACFL Division 5 in 2001

There’s nothing like Division 5 of the Laois All County Football League to throw up some random and novel fixtures.

It’s not a competition that features high on anyone’s radar but it has seen plenty of fine players over the years – some on the way up in their career and others in the latter stages of their playing days.

In the last six years alone, former Laois players Denis Lalor, Michael Lawlor and Derek Conroy have captained their respective clubs The Heath, Emo and The Rock to success in it.

It’s also a place where hurling clubs prosper and Camross have essentially dominated the competition, winning it seven times since it started in 1991.

Back at the turn of the century they were the kingpins altogether, although promotion obviously didn’t exist, seeing as they won the competition four years in a row – from 1999 to 2002.

We dug out photos from the 2001 final – when they played hurling rivals Clough-Ballacolla in the final.

Camross, captained by Paul Kavanagh, won 1-5 to 0-5 in Abbeyleix, this weekend 16 years ago.

There’s some fresh looking faces there. From the Camross team Niall Holmes and Tadhg Doran would play in this year’s Laois senior hurling final against the same opposition while Michael McEvoy, Canice Coonan and Danny Hanlon were all involved then in the football and now in the hurling.

Alf Harvey’s pictures make for great viewing – and it’s hard to imagine two nicer sets of jerseys!

George Danne, Camross sends this ball in against Clough/Ballacolla in the A.C.F.L. Division 5 final at Abbeyleix on December 3, 2001. Pictures: Alf Harvey
John McEvoy in possession for Clough-Ballacolla in the ACFL Division 5 final in 2001
Clough-Ballacolla who lost to Camross in the ACFL. Division 5 final in 2001

For the record the teams were:

CAMROSS: Colm Gaughan; Ray Cuddy, Pakie Cuddy, Tony Doran; Robert Dooley, Ollie Dowling, Niall Holmes; George Danne, Ken Cuddy; Tadhg Doran, Paul Kavanagh, Padraig Horan; Damien Culleton, John Cuddy, Larry Cuddy: Subs: Joe Dollard, Vinny Palmer, Damien Keenan

CLOUGH-BALLACOLLA: PJ Coffey; Damien Bergin, Kevin Coffey, Seamus Walsh; Pat Whelan, Mick McEvoy, Pat Dunne; Liam Dunne, John McEvoy; Canice Coonan, Declan Coffey, John Rafter; Seamus Brennan, Willie Quigley, Danny Hanlon. Subs: Mick Dunphy

REFEREE: Liam Territt (O’Dempsey’s)

SEE ALSO – Remember the Game: Camross and Ballypickas do battle in 2003 junior hurling final