Merrion has always had a vibrant youth section, dating back to the Second World War when it was the first recorded winners of the Schools Vacation League in 1942. The objectives of the youth section are to introduction young cricketers to the sport, help inculcate values of sportsmanship and team play, develop cricketing and other skills that hopefully prepare them to take an active role in the club for many years and, lastly, to hone a competitive edge that will lead to the winning of trophies.
Given the wide range of objectives it is not always easy to determine how successful the youth section is or has been. Perhaps the most successful Merrion under-age team ever, with numerous youth internationals, was the one that swept the boards at U15 levels in 1998. But twenty years on, only one of this team is still playing in Ireland, and not in Merrion.
For the purpose of this article we record the teams that won Leinster competitions and [as far back as we can go]. Hopefully readers will be able to fill in some of the gaps.
|Boys A Titles||U11 Cup Minor||U13 Cup Junior||U15 Cup||U19 / U18 T20||U19 L||U17 L||U15 L||U14 LC [G Duffy]||Junior A||Minor A||Totals|
The club has also won three all-Ireland titles: –
1998 All-Ireland U15
2005 All Ireland U11
2006 All Ireland U13
Success tends to come in waves. Clontarf have had success over many years but were quite dominant for about five years in the later 1990s. Going back further it was Belvedere who had the greatest measure of success. Bring matters up to the present day, YMCA have achieved most of their wins in the last decade and alongside Pembroke have dominated. Merrion had its best run in the mid 2000s, winning 12 titles in the five years between 2003 and 2007.
Next step is to look at the Girls Competitions but there are more gaps in the records so it may take a little longer. In the meantime if anyone reading this has photos from winning teams please send them in and we will include them in the Winners Gallery.
There is no prize but can anyone name all the players across the four photos.