Ireland impress at Cookstown opening

Ireland built up to next weekend’s Celtic Cup in Le Touquet, France with an impressive 7-1 win over Cookstown at the official opening of the new Coolnafranky complex in Co Tyrone on Friday.

The panel featured 17 of the Irish panel who will travel to France in the green jersey. Jason Lynch stepped in to complete the 18 for Ireland with David Ames playing for Cookstown in the fixture and getting the reds only goal of the night.

Speaking about the pitch opening, meanwhile, Irish coach Paul Revington praised the setup where his side were based for a training camp in April: “Having traveled around the world and experienced many different elite hockey environments, I am pleased to say that this new Cookstown facility stands firmly at the top of the list of hockey training environments.

“The detail that has gone into designing this facility is fantastic and represents what is required at a High Performance level in sport.

“This new facility and pitch is also just reward for a really good youth program that is in operation between Cookstown High School and Cookstown Hockey Club and will no doubt serve as added motivation for youngsters in the area to play hockey.

“Ireland Hockey benefits immensely from the work being done developing hockey players in Cookstown and we are pleased to bring our Senior Squad back to Coolnafranky for this showcase event.”

The evening commenced with the Cookstown Ladies’ First XI vs Jennifer Patterson’s President’s Ulster XI, a tight encounter with the visitors edging victory 2-1.

Ireland (pictured): Iain Walker, Dave Fitzgerald, Michael Maguire, Alan Giles, Conor Harte, Bruce McCandless, Chris Cargo, Phelie Maguire, Joe Brennan, Ronan Gormley, John Jackson, Jason Lynch, Eugene Magee, Timmy Cockram, Mitch Darling, Andy McConnell, Alan Sothern, Peter Caruth

Cookstown panel: Ian Hughes, Brian Hall, Stephen Cuddy, Godfrey Irwin, Gareth Cuddy (c), Simon Todd (Guest), Philip Barbour, Ian Sloan, Ewan Butler, Peter Cunningham, Andrew Barbour, Ivan Steen, Mark Crooks, David Best, Colin Donaldson, David Ames, Greg Allen, Stuart Smyth, Keith Black, Stephen Sloan, Matthew Rollins

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