Fintan McAllister, Dublin City Development
Today we caught up with dual international Kenny Carroll to chat about Railway Union. Kenny, who has represented Ireland in both Cricket and Hockey has been one of the most consistent performers on the Leinster circuit for the last decade.
The club were very successful last year with both their Men’s 1st XI reaching the Final of the LHW Financial Planning Senior League Cup and the Women's 1st XI cruised to the Sprint Coatings Division 4 in late summer.
The Men’s 1st XI gathered momentum early in the season where they only lost one game during the preliminary stages to reach the Final but finished second best to a strong YMCA side.
Kenny commented as follows:
“Even though Covid cut the season short, it was great to get some cricket in last season under the circumstances. It was brilliant to reach the Final and we unfortunately finished runners up on the day. We hope to build on this next season. Ciaran Divney is recovering from an injury and will be back for the season ahead and Oliver Perry who joined the club last year had an excellent T20 campaign. ”
Railway has a thriving youth system and have produced many provincial and international players over the years both at underage and senior level including current international Kevin O’ Brien who featured in the Final for Railway last season.
Kenny is upbeat about Railway’s future prospect:
“Ciaran Divney and Glenn Querl do a fantastic job coaching our youth teams, running training sessions and camps during the summer.” Two of the younger members at Railway, Philippe Le Roux and Alex Stiles are both improving their skills playing overseas for the winter. “Philippe is wintering well in South Africa and Alex is playing his cricket for Gosnells CC in Perth - both are great prospects for the future.”
In line with tradition, the Sandymount club also hosted the Finals of both the Whelan Cup and the Russell Court trophy last season with Kenny commenting as follows:
“We were delighted to host the two Finals again last summer and are more than happy to host more in the future”. We have invested significantly in our square and outfield over recent years and enjoy playing our part in hosting events for Cricket Leinster. Both the Whelan and Russell Court trophies were donated by Railway Union members so these competitions have special meaning for the club.’
One area the club is looking to expand on is the Underage Girls section. The senior Women's XI team had a successful season and will be up a division this year after comfortably winning the league.
Kenny sees a bright future for the female cricket programme at Railway:
“Our Women's 1st XI won the Sprint Coatings Division 4 at the first attempt which was a great achievement and we have a nice blend of youth and experience in the squad. We are hoping to establish more underage girls teams in the future leveraging the local schools network and club families. This is a major priority for the club.”
Another exciting plan on the horizon for the club is to build a roof over the nets which would make training possible all year round and would be a fantastic development.
Kenny is very excited by this strategic project:
“Its part of our plans in the near future. It would be great to be able to train in the nets in any conditions which as we all know can be a challenge for cricket in Ireland. It would also allow us to assist others looking to train or complete 1:1 sessions in the off-season or during inclement weather.’
All in all, 2020 was a successful year for the club despite Covid-19 and Kenny, who shows no signs of stopping anytime soon, is looking forward to the upcoming season where he hope and expects that Railway Union CC will be pushing for more silverware at all levels.