2021 Knocknagoshel Club History

CLUB OF THE WEEK    Knocknagoshel by Mike Brosnan

The club was formally founded in 1932 when Fr. Bob Walsh came to Knock as curate and although it is difficult to trace the origins of Gaelic Football in Knocknagoshel we can be sure that football was played in the parish long before the GAA was founded in 1884. It became more widespread after that period. There were parish leagues and matches with neighbouring parishes Brosna, Duagh and Abbeyfeale. The first mention of Knocknagoshel GAA Club was when four members of the club presented an address of welcome to Charles Stewart Parnell when he visited Listowel in 1891. But there is no record of the club being formed or registered until 1932. In 1916 following a petition by 440 householders to the Bishop of Kerry, Knocknagoshel separated from Brosna and achieved its independence as a separate parish, so when Fr. Bob Walsh formally registered the club in 1932, as the parish was the unit on which the GAA was based and one of its great strengths, hence, Knocknagoshel GAA club was formed, affiliated to Tralee District Board; and a further historic occasion was that in 1910 saw Jack McElligot, Knockbrack become the first player from the parish to play for Kerry; winning an All Ireland senior medal as a substitute in 1913 Knocknagoshel joined the district league in 1940 and went on to win four district league finals in a row 1941 – 1944. In 1969 Knocknagoshel, with some Brosna players in the side won their first ever county title, the Novice Championship. They  beat Laune Rangers in the final with Joe Thompson, the captain, accepting the trophy on the day. Knocknagoshel went on to win the County Novice Championship twice more after this on their own in 1987 and 1997. They beat a very fancied Gaeltacht side after a replay in 1987. They had a very settled panel of players at the time, backboned by four men who had played for Kerry at every level, Mikey Brosnan, Jack O’Connell, Sean McElligott and Eamon Walsh. In fact, it is surely a record that when Kerry played Down on the 23rd October 1988 the full back line was Eamon Walsh, Mikey Brosnan and Jack O’Connell, what a fantastic achievement for the club at the time.Ten years later they lifted the trophy again beating St. Michaels/Foilmore in that final played in Fitzgerald Stadium in Killarney to continue their good form in the competition. The St. Kieran’s team, again with several Knocknagoshel players on board, like the players  just mentioned, and a few more won the County Championship in 1988. Not forgetting that a few years previois to that when Knock joined the North Kerry Board in the early 70s some of their senior footballers played with Feale Rangers in the County Championship. Knocknagoshel have also won the North Kerry League three times; 1978, 1983 and 1997. In 1999, local man Richie Walsh generously donated the club with the site for a new playing pitch and club house. The field was officially opened in May 2004 with the tape being cut on the day by former politician Dan Kiely and one of Knocknagoshel’s most famous sons Eddie Walsh. The field was subsequently named in honour of Richie’s late brother, Willie, who was an exceptionally fine footballer in his time, having played with the New York Kerry team. Knocknagoshel footballers who have played with Kerry Minors are Mossie Walsh. Bertie Murphy, Sean O Connor, Eamonn Walsh, Jack O Connell, Padraig Reidy and James Walsh. James Walsh captained the Kerry minor team in 2009. Brothers Edmond and James Walsh played for the Kerry Under 21’s in 2010. Both have also won All-Ireland Junior medals with Kerry. Knocknagoshel footballers who have played with Kerry Seniors are Jack McElligott (1 All Ireland medal), Eddie Walsh (5 All Ireland medals), Ned Roche (2 All Ireland medals), Sean McCarthy, Sean O Connor, Sean McElligott, Jack O Connell, Eamonn Walsh, Mikey Brosnan and James Walsh. Knocknagoshel players have also represented other counties over the years: Bertie and Jack Murphy have played for Dublin and for Leinster, John Fitzgerald has played for Kildare, Tim O’Connor has played for Wexford and Denis Roche has played for Tipperary.

While we cannot forget the two Knocknagoshel ladies have won All Ireland medals playing with

Kerry. They are Noreen Long (nee Thompson) and Mary Scanlon (nee Lane). Mary’s collection of medals is very impressive. She won five All-Ireland medals, five Munster and five national leagues and much more besides. Her daughter Lorraine is also a very accomplished footballer and basketballer and is a key member of the present-day Kerry ladies’ team.

 CLUB OF THE WEEK.  By Mairead Moriarty, PRO, Brosna GAA

On the very edge of North Kerry, poised on a steep and picturesque hill, is the GAA football club - Brosna.  Founded in 1888, our Club has evolved over the succeeding century into a well-established organisation – proud of its history and achievements.