Coughlan / Magnier Tribute

Kilworth - A very progressive Club

With two excellent playing pitches, our covered stand, an all weather training facility, the flood lights on our second pitch, and our latest acquisition, a hurling and handball wall, along with our tarmacadamed entrance, facilities like this, illustrate a progressive club with committed and forward thinking members and volunteers. Kilworth won their first North Cork Junior hurling title fifty years ago last year when they defeated Kildorrery in the old O 'Connell Park in Mitchelstown. Today they sit proudly on top of the North Cork roll of honour with 11 titles. When the late Tom McCarthy led his team to that first historic championship success and later to a county final showdown with Cloyne in the old Athletic Grounds where they lost after a replay, following thrilling encounters along the way with Ballinhassig and a replayed semi final with Eire Og in Riverstown. The conditions that team trained under are a far cry from the excellent facilities today’s teams enjoy. Back then, showers were unheard of and as the older members will remember, the changing area was underneath the big tree behind the top goal very close to where the new hurling wall now stands. 

During the past two years, two of Kilworths greatest sporting legends, Pad Coughlan and Bill Magnier went to their eternal reward. These two men, in different ways, were hugely influential in moulding our club and teams into what they are today. Bill, or '' The Boss'' as he was affectionately known to all Kilworth people was an outstanding full back in his playing days. He served the club as secretary, chairman, and was club president up to the time of his death. He was one of the men back in the fifties who had the foresight to purchase the Kilworth pitch. Those were the days when money was scarcer than it is now, but ''The Boss'' had a vision and a determination to turn his dream into a reality and with the help of a few hard working colleagues what we enjoy today is the product of what he put in place all those years ago. Pad Coughlan gave over half a century serving his beloved Kilworth. When his playing career was cut short following a serious accident, it was then his real talent as a selector, second to none, came to light. As anybody who has served their club as a selector will tell you, it is a thankless job. There is an old saying players win matches, selectors lose them. Picking a team is probably the easy part. It is making the changes and staying calm in the heat of battle that makes a great selector. These were qualities Pad had in abundance. He not only served his club but Avondhu and Cork as well and I know there were times when he was not involved he was the first man people went to for advice. Our club owes these two men a huge debt of gratitude and the only way of saying thanks to them is to make sure we keep making progress on and off the field. 

Just over four years ago, the club took on the huge task of installing flood lights in the second pitch where they can be used for games in the winter season and for training on cold wet nights when the number one field will not suffer. Installing the lights was the easy part, raising funds to pay for them was going to be the problem. But, as ''The Boss'' and his colleagues did all those years ago, there were men and women ready to ensure the funds would be raised. Following initial support from the Sports Capital Programme and the Munster Council, a very successful Golf Classic was organised, and over the last four years, that has been the main source of income. It has now become an annual event and this year was the biggest to date with over fifty teams taking part. With the help of local man, Brian Carey, Cavanaghs of Fermoy came on board as main sponsors and with their very generous contribution each year, the money garnered from this venture has been a huge bonus. The winning of the division 3 hurling league two years ago was also a huge benefit. The effort put into the selling of the tickets for the cars, again sponsored by Cavanaghs, was huge and the support of the local people and the neighbouring parishes was unbelievable. The winning of this year’s division 3 football league means the ticket sellers will be back on the road again shortly and the fact that the winning tickets for the two cars last time round were sold by our club also made it special. In the last four years, over a quarter of a million euro has been spent on the development of our facilities and that debt will be paid off within the next two years. These things dont just happen, you need an awful lot of goodwill and a lot of hard work and we in Kilworth are so lucky that so many people give so generously of their time. The clubs latest venture, the hurling wall, has just been completed, and this again was done by a few local lads and their friends, all on a voluntary basis. 

As you can see, this is a very progressive and ambitious club. So, Pad Coughlan and ''The Boss'' can look down from their heavenly homes happy in the knowledge that the structures they put in place all those years ago are still being carried out both on and off the field.

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