2001 Irish News

17th December 2001 - Dublin Rebels take the Shamrock Bowl

The Dublin Rebels took the 2001 Shamrock Bowl with a 28-7 win against the Carrickfergus Knights. The Rebels took the lead on the opening kick-off with a 90 yard return by RB Brian Dennehy, and never looked back. They led 22-7 at half-time, and extended the lead to 28-7 late in the third quarter.

14th December 2001 - Shamrock Bowl this weekend (article from www.iafs.co.uk)

At last it's here again. After a nerve racking game the Carrickfergus Knights managed to beat the Dublin Rebels last Sunday to win homefield advantage for the final. So yes you guessed it the final is in Carrick. This is a new start for American Football in Ireland and it needs all the help and support it can get to grow. For this reason I'm asking as many of you as possible to try and make it to the game on Sunday.

So spread the word. The Shamrock Bowl will be held in the Woodburn Playing Fields, Woodburn Road, Carrickfergus. Kick off is at 1pm and both teams will be fighting hard for a win. The last two games between the Knights and the Rebels both came down to the wire, I can only imagine the same again.

11th December 2001 - Irish Fall League results

Dublin Dragons 0-12 UL Vikings
Dublin Rebels 14-20 Carrickfergus Knights

For more info on the Irish Fall League, the Shamrock Bowl between the Rebels and the Knights, and new sides starting to spring up in Coleraine and Belfast visit www.iafs.co.uk

3rd December 2001 - Photos from recent Irish Fall League games

Cillian Smith has provided us with a number of photos from recent Irish Fall League games.

Dublin Rebels (black) vs. Dublin Dragons (maroon) game from last weekend that the Rebels won 18-0.

Action from the UL Vikings vs. Dublin Rebels game

Action from the UL Vikings (blue) vs. Carrickfergus Knights (yellow) game on 18th November

Brian Dennehy (88) with only the punter to beat to score the first TD in last sunday's game between the Rebels and the Dragons

UL Vikings vs. Dublin Rebels

UL Vikings vs. Dublin Rebels

UL Vikings team photo

27th November 2001 - Latest Irish Fall League results

Dublin Rebels 18-0 Dublin Dragons

As a result of this victory, the Dublin Rebels will face the Carrickfergus Knights for the Shamrock Bowl on the 16th December.

Fall/Winter League Table:
Dublin Rebels 5-0
Carrickfergus Knights 4-1
Dublin Dragons 0-4
UL Vikings 0-4

Remaining Fixtures:
2/12/01 Dublin Dragons @ UL Vikings
8/12/01 (Sat) UL Vikings @ Dublin Dragons
9/12/01 Carrickfergus Knights @ Dublin Rebels
16/12/01 Championship Game

For the latest news on the Irish Fall League go to www.iafs.co.uk

27th November 2001 - IAFL arrange importation of equipment to Ireland

The Irish American Football League has announced a new equipment plan for Irish teams. IAFL officials visited Riddell's corporate headquarters in Chicago earlier this month and purchased a significant shipment of equipment for Irish teams.

One of the biggest problems with football in Ireland is that individual players usually have to purchase their own equipment. New players who take up the sport can be discouraged by the cost of purchasing and difficulties in obtaining new equipment. There are no equipment retailers in Ireland, so new players have to import new equipment or use second hand equipment which may be in very bad condition. The IAFL wants to move towards a situation whereby equipment is owned by the league and teams and issued to players - as is the situation with High School and College teams in the USA. New players who take up the sport next season will be able to use this equipment free of charge. 

Last June, members of the Irish American football community received a financial settlement in the Four Courts, Dublin as compensation for the actions of "Image Management & Promotion" who ran the now defunct AFAI. Three of those who received financial compensation decided to use proceeds of the legal action to get the sport going again, hence the availability of funding to purchase the new equipment
and restructure the sport.

Football in Ireland is on the up again following its recent problems. 4 teams - Carrickfergus Knights, Dublin Dragons, Dublin Rebels & Univ. of Limerick Vikings are most of the way through a 6 game schedule which will conclude at Christmas. A new structure is being put in place and the new regular season will run from late February to May with the play-offs and Shamrock Bowl taking place in June. The make-up of the new IAFL administration will be announced next month.

23rd November 2001 - Drimnagh Cycos want to host you

The Drimnagh Cyocs Senior Flag football team are asking for teams to visit them and play in Dublin, so if your team fancy a weekend in Dublin next year then contact Liam Farrell on 00-353-1-8688321 or at flag_football@ireland.com

19th November 2001 - Latest Irish Fall League results

Carrickfergus Knights 41-0 UL Vikings

For the latest news on the Irish Fall League go to www.iafs.co.uk

17th November 2001 - Latest Irish Fall League results

UL Vikings 0-34 Dublin Rebels
Dublin Dragons 0-7 Carrickfergus Knights (match forfeited due to no ambulance)

For the latest news on the Irish Fall League go to www.iafs.co.uk

16th October 2001 - Irish Fall League week 3 result

Dublin Dragons 0-12 Dublin Rebels

10th October 2001 - Irish Fall League week 2 result

Dublin Rebels 48-0 UL Rebels

1st October 2001 - Irish League kicks-off. Knights win

The Irish Fall League kicked-off, Sunday, with the Carrickfergus Knights defeating the Dublin Dragons 46-0. For more a match report click here to visit www.iafs.co.uk

26th September 2001 - Irish Fall League kicks off Sunday

The Irish Fall League kicks-off the rebirth of American Football in Ireland on Sunday, with the opening match of the four team league between Carrickfergus Knights and the Dublin Dragons. For more information click here to visit www.iafs.co.uk

19th September 2001 - Irish Fighting Celts first training session

The Irish Fighting Celts held their first training session in Northampton last weekend, and a squad of 14 has so far been chosen. To view it visit www.iafs.co.uk

The Irish Fighting Celts first training session
Photo courtesy of C.Wilson

6th September 2001 - Irish League gets off the ground, fixtures announced

There is a new Irish league that starts in the Autumn. There are 4 sides competing - the Dublin Rebels, Dublin Dragons, UL Vikings and the Carrickfergus Knights. There is seven weeks to the season and each team plays at least six games. Visit our friends at www.iafs.co.uk and for the full fixture list.

16th August 2001 - New Irish National team shirts

The IAFL have placed an order for a new set of Irish National Team shirts. The shirts will be green in colour with white numbers and white sleeve stripes. Funding to purchase the new shirts has come courtesy of IAFL sources. As part of the current restructuring of Irish American football, an Irish National Team comprising mainly of Irish based players is being set up. The new shirts will be delivered next month. In the meantime, graphics displaying the new Irish National Team uniform design will be posted on the IAFL website within the next few days. Article courtesy of www.irish-american-football.org

16th August 2001 - IAFL seek new teams

The Irish American Football League is currently seeking applications from individuals and groups who wish to field teams in the 2002 
season. If you or your organisation would like to be part of the future of Irish American football, then the IAFL would like to hear from you. Both new and existing organisations are welcome to submit an application.

All applicants who submit applications before the priority application closing date will have the opportunity to meet the IAFL, make a presentation and expand fully on their plans to field team in 2002.

Applicants will be judged on their ability to field a viable team in 2002. It is not necessary for applicants to have everything in place before making an application. The IAFL wants dedicated applicants who have clear plans and the ability to put those plans in motion using both the applicants skills and the resources available from the IAFL.

Applicants should consider the following when making an application:

Where their team is/will be based ?

Where players will be obtained - existing group of players, reformed old team or recruited from scratch ?

How Coaches and Administrators will be obtained - will the team require the IAFL to find a qualified coach. Are there any retired players available who are willing to train as coaches ?

What equipment will be needed - will IAFL help be required ?

Applicants should apply before the deadline even if they do not have every element of their proposal in place. It is possible that the IAFL will receive several applications from such applicants so it may be possible to combine two or more incomplete applications to form one strong and viable application. The IAFL will assist with such applications. 

Application forms can be obtained from the IAFL: secretary@irish-american-football.org

13th August 2001 - Irish Fighting Celts information

The Celts have confirmed that the first trials will take place in England, on the 9th of September (Sunday). The location of the trials will the the Northampton racecourse pavillion with the starting time being 12:00 noon. The changing rooms will be open an hour beforehand. 

Players selected will need to pay a £10 registration fee which covers them for a year and will need to order their Ireland shirt immediately on the day (so it will arrive in time for the games). We anticipate the cost of the shirts to be in the region of £25. Veteran players will be given their old numbers back. However, the number of Alan Byrne (27) has been retired. This is in respect to his contribution to the Ireland team, as a runningback, for many years. Alan died in the prime of life from a motorcycling accident. 

In other news the Irish Fighting Celts have been informed that the BAFA have cancelled the four nations tournament for a year. The Celts will be playing an independent schedule of international games and will apply once the four nations tournament recommences in 2002. This coming spring, we will be entering a cup tournament at Lakenheath USAF base involving representatives from other countries in a round-robin format. Besides the USA and Ireland, a Scottish representative will be invited. 

4th August 2001 - Irish American Football League launch new website

The IAFL launched it's new website on Saturday night. The site contains details of the IAFL's plans to develop Irish American football. It can be found at http://www.irish-american-football.org

20th July 2001 - Irish League to start this September

Thanks to Scott Robinson at www.iafs.co.uk we have this article concerning the Irish league. 

"Great news for all Irish American football fans. I attended a meeting not so long ago in Dublin with the aim of getting a league back up and running in Ireland. Special thanks should go to John Durran of the Dublin Dragons for putting up with everyone in his house and handing out the beers. Four teams were present over all at the meeting which were the Carrickfergus Knights, Dublin Dragons, Dublin Rebels and UL Vikings. A lot of ideas were passed around by all the teams and it looks like the first match could be played on September 30th, with maybe a blitz session being held in Dublin in August. Finally things are looking up."

20th July 2001 - Irish Fighting Celts prepare to take on Strathclyde Sheriffs

It looks like the Irish Fighting Celts have their first match against the Strathclyde Sheriffs. The game will take place on September 30th at Campus Lange, Glasgow. Kick off will be at 2.00pm. Thanks to www.iafs.co.uk for this article.

10th July 2001 - Drimnagh thrash 49-6 Leicester in Senior Flag challenge match

Saturday 7th July 2001 saw the Drimnagh Cycos host the Leicester Eagles in the fifth Anglo-Irish Shield Flag Football Challenge. This was the third visit of the Eagles to Ireland and they were seeking revenge for the victory Drimnagh achieved in Leicester last May. The history of this game saw the Cycos go into the game with three wins against the Eagles one. Although the sun did not appear it was still warm, making it great conditions for the game.

The game got underway with the Eagles receiving the opening kick-off. Although their Offense began by moving the ball well, the Cycos defense eventually got to grips with them and the Eagles went four-and-out. Drimnagh took over and it was soon apparent that QB Aidan Kelly and WR Liam Farrell were on fire. A quick drive was capped by a long winding run by Aidan for the first TD of the match. The one point conversion was successful, Kelly hitting Farrell in the back of the Endzone. This resulted in a worrying knee injury to Farrell, fortunately for the Cycos he managed to recover.

The Eagles second drive proved more successful with a steady march up the field. An inch perfect pass from Chris Wild to Craig Broughton at the front corner of the Endzone capped the drive. The Cycos managed to prevent the conversion from being scored to maintain a one-point lead. This was to prove the only score the Cycos would concede, although both Craig Broughton and James Hossack provided plenty of trouble to the Cycos secondary.

The next two Cyco possessions were capped with touchdown passes from Kelly to Farrell. Neither attempted conversion was successful. Between these two drives Aidan Kelly had managed to intercept the Eagles. With the score at 19-6 the Cycos got their fourth score of the game in the form of a run from Stephen Dunne. He capped this by making a catch for the two-point conversion.

The next score completed a hat-trick of Touchdown passes from Kelly to Farrell. Once again Stephen Dunne added the two-point conversion. The Cycos defense got in on the scoring when Liam Farrell returned an interception for a Touchdown for the next score. Iain McGuinness make the catch for the two point conversion.

An interception by Iain McGuinness on the Eagles next drive set up the Cycos final dive, which ended in another Touchdown run by Aidan Kelly. On the defensive line both Cameron Cramer and Darren Brady picked up a sack each during the game, while Mike Costall and Marcus Gambrill did likewise for the Eagles.

At the presentation of the Anglo-Irish Shield after the game, Aidan Kelly was given MVP for the Cycos and James Hossack was given MVP for the Eagles. 

Article courtesy of www.iafs.co.uk

10th July 2001 - Bournemouth Raiders pull out of Anglo/Irish challenge match. Drimnagh invite other participants

The Bournemouth Raiders have had to pull out of their proposed trip to Ireland to face the Drimnagh Cycos in a Senior Flag Football challenge match on the weekend of September 8th/9th. The game was to have coincided with the start of the new NFL season. Drimnagh would like to play any other BSFL sides. They regularly play the Leicester Eagles, and games against the Eagles are now an annual affair.They would like to pit their wits against other senior flag sides. If you would like to play the Cycos on that weekend, their manager Liam Farrell can be contacted at 

9th July 2001 - IAFL press release


The Irish American Football League welcomes the publication, earlier this week, by the Information Commissioner of his report on case 
number 000041 which recommended that the Department of Enterprise, Trade & Employment release 3 letters containing misleading 
information which had led to the initial rejection of a work permit application made on behalf of an American coach.

In 1997, Dublin Lightning American Football Club applied for a work permit to import an American national to coach in Ireland. The application was made because, at the time, there were no qualified coaches available in Ireland. Dublin Lightning explained to the Department that European American football teams routinely import 
both coaches and players. This claim was later supported by documentation received from the European American Football Association (EFAF) and the British American Football Association (BAFA). However, in February 1998, after having received letters in confidence from Mr. Jim Hutton, Mr. Seaghan Sutton & Ms. Lara 
Sleator, the Department surprisingly rejected the permit application. Dublin Lightning appealed and supplied further information supporting their claims and, after the intervention of the Office of the Ombudsman, the Department agreed to issue the permit. 

While the permit was under consideration, a number of those involved in American football in Ireland, including Dublin Lightning resigned  from the AFAI Senior League and reformed the Irish American Football League, which had existed up to the end of 1996. The short-lived AFAI Senior League was administered by Mr. Hutton's company, Image Management & Promotion, who, at the time, were contracted by the AFAI (Chaired by Seaghan Sutton). Dublin Lightning, who won the Irish Championship in 1996, resigned from the AFAI Senior League for various reasons including dissatisfaction with the way the league had been run by Image Management & Promotion, and the AFAI's refusal to affiliate to the European governing body (EFAF). A month previously, the Irish Flag Football Association (the sports "grass roots" organization) resigned from the AFAI due to dissatisfaction with Mr. Hutton. The AFAI board also refused to show their bank records for 
1996 & 1997 to individuals who had been members during that period. Since this date, it has also been discovered that Image Management & Promotion were operating without having registered with the Companies Registration Office. The Department was fully aware of this situation. 

A Freedom of Information application was made to the Department of Enterprise, Trade & Employment for access to the work permit file. The Department refused to release the 3 letters received from Mr. Hutton, Mr. Sutton and Ms. Sleator. The application was appealed to the Information Commissioner who recommended the release of the 3 letters.  The preliminary view put to the Department by the Office of the Information Commissioner stated that the letters contained information that was misleading and unreliable. The Information Commissioner also stated in his report that he could not exclude the possibility that at least some of information supplied by Hutton, Sutton & Sleator had an influence on the decision makers in the Department and also that the Department did not adequately explain why information from interested individuals should require confidentiality. Since the release of the letters, the Department has been supplied with further information refuting the information supplied by Hutton, Sutton & Sleator.

On 22 June 2001, in the Four Courts, Dublin, lawyers acting on behalf of Mr. Hutton agreed to the payment of an undisclosed sum of money and full costs to 4 members of the IAFL who initiated legal proceedings against Mr. Hutton. In July/August 1998, Mr. Hutton circulated leaflets containing libelous material at American football events in Ireland. A formal statement on this settlement and the circumstances surrounding it will be released by the IAFL next week. At present, the IAFL are preparing for the return of league football in 2002.

IAFL Board

Doug Platten
Daniel Reed
Cillian Smith
Steve Stacher

The Report on Case No. 00041 can be obtained from the Information 
Commissioners website -


The following information is available, on request, directly from the 

(i) Information from permit file.
(ii) Correspondence from EFAF & BAFA.
(iii) Private Investigators report on Jim Hutton.
(iv) Private Investigators report concerning a cheque received by 
an AFAI organization.
(v) Contact details for individuals mentioned above.

IAFL can be contacted at  americanfootball@ireland.com

6th July 2001 - Leicester Eagles travel to Dublin for senior flag international challenge match

The Leicester Eagles, who are currently 2nd in the BSFL Northern Conference, travel to Dublin this weekend for their annual fixture against the Drimnagh Cycos. This will be the fifth meeting between the two teams, and the Cycos go into the game with a 3 to 1 lead. Neither team had managed to win away from home in the series, until May of this year, when the Cycos recorded the biggest win in their history when they defeated the Eagles 12-8 at Belgrave Rugby Club in Leicester. This win for the Cycos, spices things up for this weekend's game.

2nd July 2001 - Carrickfergus Knights back in training

The Carrickfergus Knights are now training every Sunday at 2pm at Carrickfergus Rugby Club. The Knights are one of four Irish sides currently in training - the others being the Dublin Rebels, the Dublin Dragons and the UL Vikings. If anyone is interested in playing for the Knights then please contact Scott Robinson at con@linuxmail.org or Derek at bigdel_99@hotmail.com

27th June 2001 - IAFL win court case

Irish American football can now return to normal after the various legal actions were settled last week. A statement released read as follows,In the Four Courts in Dublin today, 4 members of the Irish American Football League received an undisclosed cash settlement and full costs in settlement of their legal action against Jim Hutton t/a "Image Management & Promotion" ("Image Management & Promotion had been contracted to the American Football Association of Ireland prior to it ceasing operations). One of the IAFL members said "it will be great to be able to concentrate on football rather than having to deal with these off the field problems - integrity has now been restored to the sport."

13th May 2001 - Drimnagh defeat Leicester in Senior Flag International match

This was the fourth time in recent years that the Leicester Eagles had taken on the Drimnagh Cycos from Ireland. They quickly fell 12-0 behind in the first quarter through some powerful Cycos running. The Eagles got themselves back into the game just before half-time, but didn't quite have enough to score the winning TD. Final score: Leicester Eagles 8-12 Drimnagh Cycos.

7th May 2001 - UL Vikings outlast Drimnagh Cycos in Irish Flag Football fixture

The UL Vikings defeated the Drimnagh Cycos in a Senior Flag friendly 24-20 in Ireland. The Vikings, who have just ordered a number of kits so that they can start playing kitted football, withstood a late Cycos rally.

18th April 2001 - Irish American Football website

There is a new American Football website that is devoted to the game in Ireland. It can be found at www.iafs.co.uk and it's latest feature is an interview with the Irish National Team head-coach Dr. Kurt Smeby. It looks good and BritballNow would recommend everyone to take a look and bookmark it.

16th April 2001 - Irish National team aim for return

Would all interested players for the Irish National team "Fighting Celts" please e-mail Dr. Kurt Smeby their mailing addresses so they can be contacted with information and notices at Docsmeby@aol.com This should be done as soon as possible. Dr.Smeby can also be contacted atDr. Kurt Smeby, 10 Appleby Walk, Northampton, England NN3 6PP. The following details would be valuable:  age, teams played for, preferred position, do you have your own kit?

The first game has been scheduled against the USA from Lakenheath USAF base this Autumn.  It is confirmed but the actual date is still to be set. Dr. Smeby is looking for not only players (1/4 Irish) but coaching and management staff as well. 

Dr. Smeby was the former coach of Ireland from 1993-97 when the Irish international side was at its strongest.  He was enshrined in the Minor-Pro football Hall of Fame (USA) for his work as a coach and organiser in International football.  Smeby most recently served for three years as head coach and owner of the USA Force, the only resident team representing America in Europe and his team was unbeaten, untied and (while he was there) unscored.  Now he returns to Ireland to forge a powerful side once again.

Anyone interested should consult the Dublin Fighting Celts website regularly for news.

22nd March 2001 - Dublin Lightning have not folded and the current state of American Football in Ireland

We have mentioned on this site that the Dublin Lightning have folded. This is not the case, as they intend to play as soon as a new league is started in Ireland. As BritballNow understands it at present the situation in Ireland is as follows. At present there are NO teams in training. A group of players from various teams attempted to train under the name "Dublin Dragons" recently, but in spite of their best efforts, the group could not find any opponents and training stopped.

A number of teams were recently approached about fielding a team in a new 6-man league although the people responsible for this proposed league seem to be having difficulties and nothing has happened recently on this venture.

It is believed that a new Irish American Football League will return in 2002. The IAFL have come to the conclusion that as the sport has become too fragmented, & it is going to have to be rebuilt from scratch with new teams and a lot of newly recruited players. The IAFL was recently registered in the USA (State of Illinois) as a non-profit making corporation. The purpose of this registration is to facilitate the raising of enough funding through corporate donations (which will be tax write-offs due to the IAFLs status) to rebuild the league. It is the IAFLs goal to raise enough funding by the end of this year to fully equip and fund 4 teams in Ireland. The IAFL will decide the locations of the proposed teams and run them until such time as they are strong enough to survive on their own.

It is believed that two of the sides will be based in the greater Dublin area and 2 elsewhere in Ireland (probably in Northern ireland as there are still some players there who are interested in playing). The IAFLs proposals seem to be very well received in Irish-American business circles, so they are very optimistic. Also, the Dept of Enterprise, Trade & Employment recently approved the granting of a work permit to an American coach to work in the IAFL. The agreement of the Irish Government to grant such permits will be of great benefit to the league as it reforms.

If anyone has any further news with regard to the proposed league and any other active teams then mail BritballNow atirishnews@britballnow.co.uk

6th March 2001 - Carrickfergus Knights hope for comeback but need help

The Carrickfergus Knights dissolved in 1999, but they are hoping to reform in 2001. What they need are kits and most of all sponsership. They do have some kits which previous players own but for new younger players they have no kits. If anyone knows where they can pick up some cheap second hand kits please contact Scott at con@linuxmail.org

There are also having problems assessing what teams in Ireland there are to play against. If anyone knows what teams are active in Ireland and any information on the proposed league in 2001 can they also contact Scott.

28th February 2001 - Irish Flag Football - Drimnagh Cycos on look out for players

The Drimnagh Cycos Flag Football Club have been in existence now for 6 years.  Despite the demise of the Irish Flag Football League, the Cycos are still going strong.  In May 2001 they travel to Leicester to play the Leicester Europa Eagles with a return game in June/July.  A game against the Bournemouth Raiders is also planned for September and hopefully a trip to Munich,  Germany in 2002. They are on the lookout for teams to play against and more importantly for players who wish to play for them. Contact Liam Farrell atFlag_Football@ireland.com for more info.

8th February 2001 - Irish League will start in 2001

BritballNow has learnt that there definitely will be an Irish League in 2001. The league will be made up of 3 sides from Northern Ireland believed to be Carrickfergus Knights, Belfast Queens University and Craigavon Cowboys, and two from the South (Dublin Dragons and Graystones Rebels). More news to follow when we receive it.ne

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