A Dutch treat for Irish


IRELAND gained an impressive win in the heartland of Dutch hockey yesterday when three goals were registered without reply from Amsterdam HC. The visitors, barely off the plane before going under 2-0 to Bloemendaal on Wednesday, were full of running in the second of their training matches and were two up after 20 minutes.

Alan Dowd opened the way for Daniel Clarke to score with a reverse stick shot and Colin Hade increased the lead from an Errol Lutton short corner rebound. Then, after Peter Darley had saved several set piece drives from Taco van den Honert, the 3-0 scoreline was completed five minutes into the second half. Robbie Ryan started a move which led to a rasping shot by Mark Irwin which could only be parried by the home goalkeeper and Ryan made no mistake with the loose ball.

While the Irish squad continue their build up for the World Cup qualifying tournament in Cagliari by taking on Holland's leading club sides, the Annadale Festival is the main activity in home circles this weekend. The participants include Glenanne, the Leinster Senior Cup holders, and Monkstown. In Dublin, there will be high jinks at the Pembroke veterans mixed jamboree, with Ben Rhydding and Sussex especially, welcome.

Making the most of freedom of movement in European circles, Dubliner Ger Butler has had a fully active summer. Having wintered successfully in Belgium with Herakles of Antwerp, where his competitive spirit was appreciated in midfield, he then moved to Hanover where he made an impact in the Bundesliga which is staged in more favourable conditions than can sometimes be the case at home.

However, Butler, who has served Railway Union and YMCA in more arduous days, is prepared to return to Leinster fare in time for the new season and is hoping to play for UCD (where his brother, fast bowler Owen, will be captain) or Three Rock Rovers.

The Senior League is due to get under way on September 21st but Avoca's challenge to Three Rock for the title is unlikely to start until mid October because of international commitments.