Hanoi Youth Cup 2015

A skillful HIS Seniors with coaches Leo Dyar and Mike Clifford

A very skillful HIS Seniors with coaches Leo Dyar and Mike Clifford

The 5th edition of the Hanoi Youth Cup took place in My Dinh on 5th December. VAS Hanoi, hosted a very enjoyable event in conjunction with the Viet Celts Gaelic Football Club whose club members had put in a lot of work over the proceeding months in the various schools and Blue Dragon Children’s Foundation GFC. This foundation takes care of disadvantaged children.

Rohan Savage helping set up- An absolute gem of an Australian.

Rohan Savage helping set up – An absolute gem of an Australian.

Atrocious weather conditions in the days around the tournament affected the build-up but thankfully the heavy rains held off long enough on the day to get all of the games finished.

Vietnamese + Irish flags. DFA/GAA + Education in Ireland banners

Vietnamese + Irish flags. DFA/GAA + Education in Ireland banners

 

U18 Boys Competition (Senior)

Hanoi International School      8.10   (34pts)

VAS Hanoi                                              3.05   (14pts)

Hanoi International School proved too classy an outfit for VAS Hanoi with a number of tall athletic players who were all comfortable on the ball. Jamie Martin made the step up from intermediate level to senior in seamless fashion and won the Jack Kiernan Award for overall Player of the Tournament on the back of his displays.

Player of the Tournament award

Player of the Tournament Award

The award was presented by Jack Kiernan’s grandson and namesake, Jack Kiernan aged 2, who spent a good part of the tournament issuing strict instructions to the players from the sideline.

Jack Kiernan dropped in to do a spot of coaching and present his grandfather's award

Jack Kiernan dropped in to do a spot of coaching and present his grandfather’s award

Do Thanh Tung had a fine game for VAS Hanoi thanks to a hawkish eye for goal and some intelligent play.

Hanoi International School    4.9 (21pts)

Blue Dragon                                        5.2 (17pts)

HIS Seniors with coach Leo Dyar

HIS Seniors with Coach, Leo Dyar

Hanoi International School (HIS) won the series with a hard fought battle against Blue Dragon. With an ounce of good fortune, Blue Dragon might well have taken the spoils. However a strong Hanoi International School prevailed in what turned out to be the deciding game in this competition.

Jeong, Woochan of HIS with the - Hanoi Senior Cup

Jeong Woochan of HIS with the Hanoi Senior Cup

HIS coaches, Leo ‘Wiley Fox’ Dyar and Mike Clifford were calmness personified on the sideline over the series as their charges put into practice their winning strategy.

Coach Mark Horkan, never far from a little notebook

Coach Mark Horkan, never far from a little notebook

Although it did not result in victory, Blue Dragon coaches on duty, Mark Horkan , Nguyen Dong Viet and Rob Lee were pleased with the standard of the performance.

Blue Dragon U18 MVP

Blue Dragon U18 MVP

 

Blue Dragon   8.6 (30pts)

VAS Hanoi      2.4 (10pts)

This was a niggling affair with a tempestuous bite to it in a game where Blue Dragon was clearly the superior team. The skills and verve on display from the Blue Dragon Children’s Foundation GFC were a testament to the excellent work by their Viet Celts coaches. This was the culmination of twelve months training by one of the most dedicated coaching panels put together in Vietnamese Gaelic Football history.

VAS Hanoi U18 MVP, Do Thanh Tung with Jim Kiernan and Ann Brown

VAS Hanoi U18 MVP, Do Thanh Tung with Jim Kiernan and Ann Brown

Over the year, those coaches have been Mark Horkan, John Shoulders , Nguyen Dong Viet , Le Thi Thu, Dave Cunningham,  Nguyen Ngoc Quynh, Brian McNulty, Tho Nguyen, Jim Kiernan, Joe Cashell, Nguyen Van Lan, Rob Lee, Dau Phuong Linh, Will Langslet, Claire Sauvage,  Chiara Popplewell, Amy Cowan, Luke Kenny, Joe Vile, Grant Keys, Kim Miller, Brian Lavan, Siobhan Kiernan and Nguyen Thai Thanh.

Champions: Hanoi International School

 

U13 Boys Competition (Junior)

SIS Gamuda          4.10 (22pts)

Blue Dragon        4.09 (21pts)

The U13 final saw Blue Dragon Children’s Foundation GFC, coached by Nguyen Thi Thanh and Le Thi Thu, take on SIS Gamuda mentored by James Lally and the omnipresent John Shoulders.  The match started a little slowly as both teams took time to find their rhythm but began to pick up near the end of the first half. Blue Dragon forced some brave saves out of the SIS goalkeeper and the sides went into half-time level at 1.2 (5pts) to 5pts.

Blue Dragon U13 MVP

Blue Dragon U13 MVP

Picking up from where they left off at the end of the first, both teams came out confident and firing in the second half, with SIS, led by Ji Woo, scoring points from all over the attacking half. Undaunted by their larger opponents, however, Blue Dragon was not to be outdone and through a surprising mix of skill, tenacity and unselfish play managed to match their opponents point for point and goal for goal.  After a final flurry where SIS seemed to pull away, Blue Dragon again struck back with a goal and a point in the final minute. All participants converged on referee Jim Kiernan, who counted and recounted the score card in disbelief to reveal yet another tie at 3.7(16pts)  to 3.7 (16pts).

GAA Logo

True to the back and forth nature of the game, both teams again came out blistering in extra-time, with both teams adding yet more fantastic goals and points to their tally.  When the final whistle blew, both teams again surrounded the referee whose final score showed Blue Dragon at 4.09 (21pts) and SIS Gamuda at 4.10 (22pts) with SIS Gamuda taking the match by the narrowest of margins in a game which was truly a pleasure for all who watched and took part.

Champions: SIS Gamuda

Blue Dragon U15 MVP + Coach John Shoulders

Blue Dragon U15 MVP + Coach  John Shoulders

U15 Boys Competition (Intermediate)

Blue Dragon      8.6 (30pts)

VAS Hanoi           4.7 (19pts)

In the U15 match, Blue Dragon with a few older guest players from SIS Gamuda took on the VAS Hanoi side.  Having perhaps a slight advantage in having several players coming in hot from the previous match, Blue Dragon came out impressively, again showing off their fast moving and sharp passing style of play.  With the aid of Khanh An and Ji Woo of SIS, Blue Dragon scored several quick goals and were able to carry their momentum into half time carrying the lead.

 VAS Hanoi U15 MVP, Nguyen Tran Nguyen with Jim Kiernan and Ann Brown with Jim Kiernan

VAS Hanoi U15 MVP, Nguyen Tran Nguyen with Jim Kiernan and Ann Brown

 

Despite missing several of their key players, however, VAS Hanoi was undiscouraged, and the team showed its pride by taking the game back to Blue Dragon in the second half.  With their new found swagger, VAS scored several fine goals and points thanks in part to Tran Nguyen Nhu Toan  and guest player, Farish Sulaiman from Malaysia up front.

Education_in_Ireland_Logo_CMYK-1

They forced several more fine saves out of the Blue Dragon goalkeeper who was a rock on the day.  On a difficult day to be a VAS goalkeeper, Nguyen Tran Nguyen won the VAS Junior Player of the Tournament award due to some magnificent saves.

DFAT_Colour_Detailed_Horizontal (1)

At the end of the match, however, Blue Dragon’s early flurry proved to be the difference as the Children’s Foundation club claimed their second trophy in as many tournaments in a well deserved victory.

Blue Dragon

Champions:Blue Dragon

 

Acknowledgements

Blue Dragon U15, U18 + U13 MVPs

Blue Dragon U15, U18 + U13 MVPs

Special thanks to Rohan Savage who came down on the morning of the games to help set up.  Lana Le organised the medals and trophies. James Lally refereed most of the games and did a fine job together with Mark Horkan and Jim Kiernan. Special mentions to Nguyen Thi Uyen, Nguyen Thi Hong Minh, Dong Vinh Khanh, Ann Brown, Cao Thi Huyen Huong  and Kylie Atkins for help with logistics. All these contributions were greatly appreciated.

Presentations

Presentations

Thanks to Education in Ireland, the Irish Embassy, the Asian County Board, the DFA and the GAA for their vital support of the Viet Celts Schools Gaelic Football Program.

Asian Club of the Year 2010 - Won because of the Viet Celts Schools Program

Asian Club of the Year 2010 – Won due to the Viet Celts Schools Program

 The Viet Celts

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VC Christmas Party and Awards Night 2015

Paddy A, acting the divil

Paddy A, acting the divil

The VC Christmas Party and Awards Night 2015 was held at the Wolfhound on Saturday, 28 November. The speechifying was sharp and most importantly short.

Thanks to Ewan Anderson and the Wolfhound for hosting us, Amy Cowan for putting the night together and Lana Kiernan who went to great trouble to get the awards made.

Kiernans in da Hound

Kiernans in da Hound

The full list of winners of the various awards will be posted below. There are a few awards still to present to people who were out of town on the day in question.

Pham Lan waiting anxiously to hear news of the winners

Pham Lan waiting anxiously to hear news of the winners

The Viet Celts

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Ladies Gaelic Football, Vietnam : November 2015

This is a shadow report. Full report to follow.

The rallying call

The rallying call

Viet Celts Ladies   6.12 (30pts)

Saigon Ladies        5.06 (21pts)

The Viet Celts Ladies had a fantastic victory against the Saigon Ladies on 21 November, 2015 in a most enjoyable game played at UNIS, Ciputra.

Claire Longworth striding away from opponents and the referee

Claire Longworth striding away from opponents, the referee and the world

Saigon Gaels traveled up for the weekend to Hanoi so well done to everybody for their efforts and Amy Cowan and the girls for logistics at the event. The entertainment value was a credit to both sides with the two teams trying to play good, open, attacking Gaelic Football. Cormac Hamill did a solid job with the whistle.

A delighted VC Ladies Captain, Siobhan Kiernan

A clearly delighted VC Ladies Captain, Siobhan Kiernan

VC Ladies Captain, Siobhan Kiernan was delighted with the performance with some great scores created and taken by the VC Ladies.

Justifying her team selection on national television on the morning of the game.

Justifying her team selection on national television on the morning of the game.

 

 

 

 

VAS_Hanoi_LOGO

VAS GAELIC CUP 2015

VAS Senior Girls 6.4 (22pts)

VAS Junior Boys 3.4 (13pts)

On Tuesday, 24th November 2015, the 7th edition of the annual VAS Gaelic Cup was played at the Thanh Long (Ascending Dragon) astroturf pitch in Hanoi. This year there was a novel pairing with the VAS Senior Girls taking on the VAS Junior Boys.

 As is traditional with the VAS Gaelic Cup, there were some guest players from Australia, a tradition started by Mohan Dhall in 2009. This year, the VAS Senior Girls were bolstered by four exchange students from Sydney; Kendall Lane, Madison Lane, Erin Harmer and Sandra Margo who all got involved wholeheartedly with the team. The Lane twins play state level association football in Australia as well as schools’ netball and they took to Gaelic Football like the proverbial ducks to water.

 The VAS Junior Boys had won the South Asian U12 Boys  tournament two years previously when they were that age group so certainly had form but that was not enough to stop the intelligent link up play and free scoring of the Lane sisters and Vu Cong Ngoc Thu.

It was a marvelous game to watch and another fine result for Ladies Gaelic Football in Vietnam.

The Viet Celts

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Hanoi IR Canister 2015

The Canister and the Field

This is a shadow report. Full report to follow.

On a foggy Saturday afternoon in UNIS, Ciptura, Hanoi on 14 November 2015,  representatives of the Vietnam Swans, Viet Celts and Hanoi Dragons met for the 2nd annual “Hanoi International Rules Canister’. The game saw players from three different codes – Australian Rules, Gaelic Football and Rugby Union – playing a fourth one – International Rules. For the purposes of this game the planet was divided in two with the Viet Celts taking control of the Northern Hemisphere and the Vietnam Swans taking control of the Southern Hemisphere.

 

VC Logo NewDue to a Minsk FC game on at the same time, the Viet Celts aka, the Northern Hemisphere were missing a number of key operators and had to gang press in a number of substitutes from either side of the age spectrum.

One of the key battles involved Grant Keys of the South playing full forward  v John O’Shoulders of the North playing full back and it was indeed a treat for the spectators to watch these two tough but honest characters in action.

Vietnam Swans1

Due to the skeletal nature of the Northern side, the Southerners were never in any great trouble but the positive from a Viet Celts point of view was the debut of James Lally from Galway after a long lay off due to serious  injury.

Hanoi Dragons Logo

The field was covered in an  enveloping fog by the last quarter as both teams elected not to rage against the dying of the light but rather let if fade.

The titles now stand at one apiece with the roll of honour as follows:

2014  Northern Hemisphere (Viet Celts + Northern Dragons)

2015 Southern Hemisphere ( Vietnam Swans + Southern Dragons)

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Asian Gaelic Games 2015 – Shanghai

Both VC teams in Shanghai with Andy Cole

Both VC teams in Shanghai with Andy Cole

This is a shadow report. Full report to follow.

At the Asian Gaelic Games in Shanghai on 23-25 October, the Viet Celts Mens’ team lost out to Japan by one point in the Asian Intermediate Plate semi-final. It was level after normal time, level after extra time and then it went to golden point (score) which the opposition put over. Japan got the bounce of the ball from the throw-in. It could have gone either way but didn’t.

Viet Celts Mens’ team before the semi-final

Viet Celts Mens’ team before the semi-final

There are probably worse ways of deciding it. Due to the ebb and flow nature of the game plus the drama at full time, extra time and the finish, some VC Veterans remarked that it was the most exciting tournament game a Viet Celts’  team has been involved in. That’s a debate for a winter’s night in the Wolfhound.

Japan beat Shanghai handily enough in the final so congratulations to them. Overall the Viet Celts Mens’ team had a solid tournament considering it was a fairly make-shift team. There were good wins against Seoul and Suzhou. Viet Celts’ Club Captain, Neil Hiney picked up an Asian All-Star on the back of some outstanding performances throughout the tournament.

Neil Hiney, so good that he doesn't need to look

Neil Hiney, so good that he doesn’t need to look

 

The other main story from a Viet Celts point of view was the VC Ladies winning the Asian Bowl  after a number of consecutive tournaments from 2009-11 as runners-up in both the Asian Bowl and Asian Plate. It was a smashing team performance in the final where everyone went to the well on more than one occasion to put the result in no doubt coming into the last quarter of the game.

VC Ladies: the shapes continue

VC Ladies: the shapes continue

Well done to Shanghai for putting in all the hard work to bring the different aspects of the tournament together.

Jim Kiernan and Wild Bill Langslet with a bit of silverware

Jim Kiernan and Wild Bill Langslet with a bit of silverware

The Viet Celts

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Tom Doer Memorial Cup

Tom Doer2

On Sunday, 11 October 2015, the Tom Doer Memorial Cup was played at the Canister ground in My Dinh. Tom Doer had not left this mortal coil but it was the closest thing we will ever have to an ‘Australian wake’ in these parts. Tom had played an important role for both the Viet Celts and the Vietnam Swans in his time in Hanoi and had represented both clubs with distinction in tournaments and as a consequence had left quite an impression on his fellows.  It was fitting that both teams would come together to organise an International Rules game for him and give him a bit of a farewell.

TD Cup

The man himself was in flying form as a fast running Vietnam Swans ran the Viet Celts ragged to run out comfortable winners. Tom was named as captain of the Vietnam Swans for the encounter and Dave Cunningham captained the Viet Celts whilst on a jaunt from Cambodia visiting his people in Hanoi.

Vietnam Swans President, Grant Keys encapsulated the ethos of the occasion in one brief, forceful, and meaningful quote

“History will record it as a highly entertaining affair played in great spirits”

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Viet Celts Meet-Ups – Summer, Autumn 2015

Off the field, over the summer and early autumn, there were a number of VC meet-ups in Ireland, around the world and back to the mother-ship, Hanoi again. These took place whilst the Viet Celts were flung to the far corners of the globe.

 

Dublin, Ireland – June

The Viet Celts in the bastion of Criketdom, The Pavillion, Trinity College

The Viet Celts in the bastion of Criketdom, The Pavillion, Trinity College

A number of Viet Celts met up in Dublin in June at the Pavillion Bar on the grounds of Trinity College. Dan Coloe flew in from Australia via Turkey, Jamie McGough from Liverpool, Dave Cunningham from Hanoi to join Jim Kiernan, Lana Le and Jack Kiernan who had arrived two weeks earlier from Vietnam. VC Exiles, Shane Toohy, Shaney Moran, Nguyen Thai Thanh and a disguised Professor Pascal made a great effort to attend what turned in a smashing Viet Celts afternoon and evening joined by an assortment of dear friends and family.

 

Galway, Ireland – June

 

The Viet Celts on the beach in beautiful Lettermullen, Connemara

The Viet Celts on the beach in beautiful Lettermullen, Connemara

Dan Coloe, Shaney Moran, Jamie McGough, Jim Kiernan and a random Italian person whose name remains forever forgotten  ended up in Connemara after greatly improving community relations in Tuam and enjoying  a cultural experience in Galway City with Mark McGough.

 

 

 Armagh, Ireland – July

 

Will Galway beat Armagh?

Will Galway beat Armagh?

Shaney Moran and Julianne Goyena traveled up to visit VC goalkeeping legend, Paddy A Quinn in Armagh. A slight difference of opinion with a kind gentleman possessing of a toothy grin was still months away. Mr and Mrs. Quinn were the genial hosts personified.

 

California, USA – July

 Tamey Pyper wed the nubile Nora Miller in California in what many billed as the Viet Celts’ wedding of the century.

The spine of the Viet Celts

The spine of the Viet Celts

A solid crew of Viet Celts flew stateside to be in attendance in what promised to be one of the most jolly social gatherings of the summer. The gentlemen concerned are in the photograph below; John Shoulders, Shane Culbertson, Dougie Pyper, Tamey Pyper,  Wild Bill Langslet and Don Pyper.

The Lads in 'Merica

The Lads in ‘Merica

 

Viet Celts wedding of the century

Viet Celts wedding of the century

 

Shane Culbertson officiated at the ceremony with the power invested in him by the Viet Celts.

By the power vested in Shane Culbertson from the Viet Celts

By the power vested in Shane Culbertson from the Viet Celts as he marries the happy couple, Tamey and Nora

The groom, Tamey Pyper and the lovely Pim Culbertson

The groom, Tamey Pyper and the lovely Pim Culbertson

 

Hanoi, Vietnam – August

Before or after, who knows

Before or after, who knows

The Viet Celts Ladies organised a very enjoyable night at CAMA ATK to raise funds to send a Vietnamese player to the Asian Gaelic Games in Shanghai. Thanks to Dan Dockery for facilitating the night and Amy Cowan, Siobhan Kiernan, Chiara Poppelwell and the rest of the girls who put in a lot of hard work.

 

Hanoi, Vietnam, September

 

Brian McNulty

Viet Celts goalkeeping feline, Paddy A Quinn, Jim Kiernan, Mark Wilde, Siobhan Kiernan and a good number of the VC Ladies got together in Sidewalk, Xuan Dieu to bid farewell to Brian McNulty. In two separate stints in 2015, Brian made a knowledgeable contribution to the Blue Dragon GFC project as well as helping out with our senior club training in 2014.

Hanoi, Vietnam – October

Happy Birthday Andy

Happy Birthday Andy

A number of Viet Celts got together in Hanoi in October for the 6th birthday of junior Viet Celt, Andy Culbertson. Those in attendance were Ewan Anderson, Fregus Broderick, John Shoulders, Colm and Liam Ross, Jim, Lana and Jack Kiernan, Shane and Andy Culbertson + one of the finest assortments of Tierneys ever gathered in one place.

The Viet Celts

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