Pre-season prestige as Rangers claim a trophy

The Rathfriland Rangers squad with the Peter Corrigan Memorial Cup after their 4-1 victory over competition hosts Castlewellan Town in the final.
The Rathfriland Rangers squad with the Peter Corrigan Memorial Cup after their 4-1 victory over competition hosts Castlewellan Town in the final.

Rathfriland Rangers claimed glory in the Peter Corrigan Memorial Cup competition, with Darren McGrath the standout player.

The Whites took victory in Castlewellan Town’s annual pre-season tournament on Saturday, 11 July, coming through a difficult group that included the hosts, Belfast outfit Cumann Spoirt an Phobial and Portaferry Rovers.

Rathfriland Rangers captain Conor Larkin is presented with the Peter Corrigan Memorial Cup by Castlewellan Town president Paddy Corrigan.

Rathfriland Rangers captain Conor Larkin is presented with the Peter Corrigan Memorial Cup by Castlewellan Town president Paddy Corrigan.

They then faced last year’s Northern Amateur Football League Division 1A title winners Downpatrick in the semi-final, prevailing as 2-1 winners in a tight contest.

Castlewellan had beaten Rathfriland 3-2 in the opening game of the day, and the two then met again in the final.

This time, however, the Whites coasted to a 3-0 lead by half-time, and ran out 4-1 winners to take the cup.

McGrath was named the player of the tournament for his dazzling displays in the group game win over Portaferry Rovers, the semi-final and the final.

Darren McGrath picks up the Player of the Tournament award.

Darren McGrath picks up the Player of the Tournament award.

But the Rangers’ team displays throughout the competition had been top class, and as new signings begin to gel with the existing faces in manager Clifford Sterritt’s squad, it looks like a promising season lies ahead.