Ireland hosted the Association Croquet Home Internationals at Carrickmines Croquet and Lawn Tennis Club on June 11-12th 2022. Teams from Scotland, Wales and England visited to complete a full field fixture for the first time since 2019. Due to travel restrictions in place as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2020 fixture was not played and Ireland could not travel for the 2021 match in the UK.
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The list of current members of the CAI council has been added as a new page on this website.
"To love a woman, you've got to know - how the rich die poor and the strong grow weak, Slave to love." Bryan Ferry's lyrics floated in the Budley air nearest young Mark Stephens' Bluetooth headset. He had love on his mind. Not of the unrequited type but one borne of mutuality - of purity of strike and swooshing of hoop. The young malletman (perhaps the finest hoopman to have ever excelled at Technical Drawing in Cabra-on-Sea during a brief pupil exchange with a Jose Maria Escriva academy of brown scapular woolmen) undertook his day three task with relish.
An exhortation unto muintir na hÉireann (the people of Ireland) resulted in a trio of young hotshots presenting their credentials to represent our nation in the 2022 ERC European Golf Croquet Championship. Having received the sporting imprimatur from the CAI's cognoscenti, Mssrs Murphy, O'Donoghue and Stephens stood to attention as the government Learjet taxi'd up at Baldonnell to whisk them to Budley. A teary Alan Looney invoked Big Jack from the tarmac: "Téigh agus buaigh é" (go and compete).
They were sent like a quasi-active service unit to Blighty. Not for them Marxist guff drenched in fertiliser, nitroglycerine, sugar and ball-bearings but a compassionate croquet philosophy intent on annexing silverware in a European Championship field of pure pedigree. Talk of a sea border had been abandoned back at Larne together with the protocol houha and confiscated cans of McEwan's lager.
CAI VICTORY IN THE APPLETON
As Irish Croquet emerges from the pandemic, we can begin by reporting our first representative success, with the CAI team emerging as winners of the Appleton Trophy after a close match in Edinburgh over the SCA.
In warm and sunny conditions the Irish team (Simon Williams, Nathaniel Healy, Jane Morrison, Fiachra Carroll and Alan Looney) battled hard on unfamiliar lawns at The Meadows club. At close of play on Saturday there was nothing separating the teams at 6 all but a surge on Sunday morning
The team selected to represent CAI in the annual match against SCA, to be played in Edinburgh on 14/15 May is
Nathaniel Healy (C)
The team selected to represent Ireland in the Home Internationals to be played at Carrickmines on 11/12 June 2022 is
Danny Johnston (C)
Russell Harris (Reserve).