The Donegal Junior League is up and running for the last couple of weeks with games in the Brian McCormick Sports Cup. But the season begins in earnest this weekend with a full round of fixtures on Saturday and Sunday.
The League was officially launched on Tuesday night at the Donegal Junior League’s headquarters in Ballyare before representatives of the majority of clubs in the League.
Speaking on behalf of the League at the launch the League’s vice-chairman, Nigel Ferry, said it was good to see the leagues up and running again and all involved are looking forward to the new season.
“We have 36 clubs competing in the League’s five leagues, three on Sunday and two in the Saturday Leagues,” said Nigel Ferry.
“In all we will have somewhere between 1,200 and 1,300 players playing in our competitions.”
The vice-chairman complimented all the clubs for the great work they do year in and year out. He also complimented the referees and he appealed to the clubs to appreciate the job referees do and he reminded the gathering that without referees there would be no games.
He also told how the referees’ body were finding difficulty in recruiting new referees and he urged the clubs to encourage people to get involved in refereeing.
Mr Ferry also thanked the League’s many sponsors including the main sponsors Brian McCormick of Brian McCormick Sports, who has been with the League dating back years.
Brian McCormick of Brian McCormick Sports was present at the launch.
He also thanked Cathal Temple of Temple Domestic Appliances, who had got involved in recent years, and the Crossan family, who also have been sponsoring the League for a number of years,
Other sponsors such as the Orchard Inn and Donegal Physiotherapy and Performance Centre were also thanked by the vice-chairman for their continued support.
Mr Ferry also encouraged clubs to support the sponsors whose contribution to the League were crucial in its continued success.
And he also thanked the media for their coverage throughout the season.
Mr Ferry also gave an update on the League’s development at Ballyare which has been completed.
He thanked the clubs who made an enormous contribution through levies to the development. And he also paid tribute to Joe McHugh TD, Chief Whip and Minister of State, for his support in obtaining funding from the Capital Grant and John Delaney of the FAI for a grant of €50,000.
He also thanked contractors William Coyle of Pitch Dimensions, Rogers Fencing, Dungannon and McSherry Electrical Contractors, who installed the floodlights for the standard of their work and the professionalism in carrying out their contracts.
And the vice-chairman paid a special tribute to the League’s caretaker at Diamond Park, Eunan Doherty, who went way beyond the call of duty during the course of the development.
The date for the official opening has not been finally decided but the first game on the new pitch was due to be played last night (Wednesday) with the Donegal League Oscar Traynor team taking on Finn Harps.
The newly appointed Donegal League Oscar Traynor manager, Raymond Shields, was present at the launch as was Letterkenny Municipal area mayor Cllr Ian McGarvey.
The draw was also made for the Voodoo League Saturday Cup on Tuesday night.
DONEGAL LEAGUE FIXTURES
Saturday 8th September 2018 - k.o. 2 p.m.
Glencar Inn Division One
Castlefin Celtic v Arranmore United 1 p.m.
Strand Rovers FC v St Catherines FC Reserves
Oldtown Celtic v Glenea United
Keadue Rovers FC v Donegal Town FC
Dunlewey Celtic v Glencar Celtic
Old Orchard Division Two
Milford United FC v Drumoghill FC Res
Gweedore Celtic v Fintown Harps AFC
Drumbar FC v Killdrum Tigers
Drumkeen United v Cappry Rovers
Sunday 09th September 2018
Brian McCormick Sports & Premier
Killdrum Tigers v Keadue Rovers FC
Cappry Rovers v Donegal Town FC
Milford United FC v Rathmullan Celtic
Kilmacrennan Celtic FC v Glenea United
Temple Domestic Appliance Division 1
Drumoghill FC vConvoy Arsenal FC
Bonagee United FC v Lifford Celtic FC
Ballybofey United FC v Lagan Harps FC
Drumkeen United v Cranford FC
Donegal Physiotherapy & Performance Centre Division 2
Deele Harps FC v Curragh Athletic FC
Dunkineely Celtic FC v Gweedore United FC
Whitestrand United FC v Letterbarrow Celtic FC
Kerrykeel 71 FC v Glenree United FC