Pictured are the Tipperary guys in action at the championships for their club. Jim Ryan is 1st from right, Michael Ryan, 5th from right and Willie Corcoran 6th
Tipperary was represented last weekend at the European Tug of War Championships in County Mayo by Upperchurch native, Jim Ryan, and Michael Ryan of Borrisoleigh. Jim was selected for the Ireland Senior Men’s team which reached the semi-final of the 640 kilograms weight category, while Michael lined out for the 4x4 mixed selection. ‘It was a great honour to be selected’, said Jim Ryan, ‘and a great way to finish off a good year for us.’ Jim and Michael’s selection came after a successful year with their club, Castlegregory, which yielded a first gold and three silvers at national senior level. Formerly of The Shop Tug-of-War club, Michael, Jim and brother, Tom, Willie Corcoran, and coach Anthony Pender, joined forces with Kerry club in 2018.
Coach Pender said he was delighted for the Ryans. ‘It’s great for Michael and Jim, we’re delighted for them.’ ‘And it’s great for the club, too,’ he added. ‘It shows the progress we’ve made this year as a club.’ The Ryans and their teammates progressed to international competition for the first time this year, winning bronze and silver at the recent British and Irish championships. That achievement paved the way for the team to compete for the first time at European level in the club competition, which preceded the weekend’s national competition. Having tasted international competition for the first time Michael Ryan stated that he and his teammates want to aim even higher next year. ‘We’ve been buzzing all week’, he said, ‘and now we really want to go and compete next year at the world championships in Spain.’