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Ladies Gaelic Football Flourishes in Hanoi

VAS Girls 4.2 (14pts)

HIS Girls  0.7  (7pts)


On Saturday, 21 September 2013, the HIS Challenge Cup was played at Hanoi International School (HIS) in Ba Dinh, Hanoi. The main game was between HIS Girls and the girls from Vietnam Australia School (VAS Hanoi). HIS had recently opened a fine new sports ground comprising of two pitches which are perfect for Youth Gaelic Football. It was fitting that they invited their cross town rivals, VAS from My Dinh, over to help celebrate the new sports ground with an inaugural game of Gaelic Football. Gaelic Football has become such an integral part of the sports curriculum in both schools over the last few years. It also tied in nicely with the All Ireland Final weekend.


The HIS girls started brightly and had the better of the opening exchanges, scoring a couple of long range points from acute angles. These were contributed by star player, Monica Tranova. The HIS forwards were combining well up front with good passing movements. A three-minute period of play, which started with a narrowly missed goal chance by VAS and a missed penalty by HIS, ended up with a converted penalty by the girls from VAS. Pham Luu Vi dispatched it with unforgiving intent.


The VAS midfield and attack began combining well and playing quick, accurate ball, none more so than Nguyen Nga who had an outstanding game. Her midfield partner, Truong Thi Ngoc Anh won the high ball and set up the forays into the HIS half of the field. HIS were still dangerous and continued to put over some exquisitely taken points.


The VAS defense held firm as HIS went in search of a goal to bring them back fully into the game with Reina Takahashi of HIS particularly impressive. However, as in the All-Ireland Final a day later, goals win games and it was the goals scored by Nguyen Nga of VAS that put the result beyond doubt. HIS coaches, Mike Clifford and Leo Dyar and VAS coach, Jim Kiernan presented kits as awards at the end of the game. These kits had been sent over from Ireland by the Leinster Council.


After the main game, each school team played the Viet Celts Ladies (Duracelts) in two training games and both school teams held their own against much more experienced opponents albeit with a few advantages to even up the games. The idea behind these training games was to give the Viet Celts Ladies a run out before the Asian Gaelic Games in October as well as giving the schoolgirls a chance to learn from the senior girls. All in all, it was a great day for both Gaelic Football and women’s sport in Vietnam.


Thanks to everyone at HIS, VAS Hanoi and the Viet Celts who helped out with logistics. Special thanks to Education in Ireland, Movenpick Hotel, the Asian Gulf Board, the Leinster Council and the GAA/DFA Open Call for their continued support of the Viet Celts Schools Gaelic Football program.

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