There is an apocryphal story that the exact moment when the idea of a Sandyford club lodged in Tiernan MacConville's mind came in a match between Civil Service and Aer Lingus in June 1984. Tiernan was playing for Civil Service and Mick Kelly had clattered a full-length ball from Tiernan for yet another six. Les Hewson, Bono's uncle, said "Thanks very much Tiernan" and everyone knew that Tiernan's career in Civil Service had come to a premature end. Sandyford played their first match two weeks later. Tiernan opened the bowling.

The truth is though Tiernan has been pondering the idea for many years. The MacConville family lived on the northern end of Sandyford village (their house was subsequently demolished in 2002 to make way for the M50 extension to Carrickmines) and with his two brothers, Brendan and Brian, Tiernan as a youngster had played cricket in the neighbouring fields with Paul and David Bergin, Mark Fagan and others

The McConville Brothers

Brendan, Brian and Tiernan MacConville at the Club's 20th anniversary celebrations in 2004.

The cricket games even extended to playing "international" games against nearby Balally, who numbered among their team, Cliff Kennedy. So cricket was very much part of Tiernan's formative years. When he left school and qualified as an architect, Tiernan continued his interest in cricket and played for Civil Service. However, at the back of his mind he always harboured the idea of forming his own club in Sandyford and he frequently mentioned that idea to others, including Cliff Kennedy whom he would often bump in to in Merrion Square, John Fennell and anyone else who was prepared to listen.

 Cliff Kennedy, the first Secretary of the Club (1984-6), Club Captain (1988-90 and 1993-6) and President (1999-2006).

John Fennell

John Fennell (who held all 4 positions on the committee at different stages during the first 20 years including Club Captain (2000-1) and President (1997-8 and 2013-4).

In 1984, having put out feelers to a number of friends, relatives and other "disaffected" Civil Service players such as the Coghlan brothers, Tiernan decided the time was right to form a club. The first committee consisted of Tiernan as Club Captain, Paul Bergin as President, Cliff Kennedy as Secretary and Paul Cregan as Treasurer.

The main problem was lack of a ground. Tiernan was aware that there was a properly laid square and cricket ground off College Road in Marlay Park, a 10-minute drive away from Sandyford village and which CYM CC used occasionally. Sandyford started "unofficially" to use the square for friendly matches and practice games.

 Next Chapter - Marlay Park




Last Updated (Thursday, 28 May 2015 12:51)