Irish Federation of Sea Angling PRO Brian Reidy described the achievement as phenomenal and one he hopes will put the sport “back on the map” in this country.
“This is huge for us,” Reidy explained. “The fact we won on home soil is special. “This is the first time the ladies have entered a team into the competition and the men haven’t won since 2010. What they achieved this week is phenomenal and has done so much for the sport in Ireland.
This wasn’t just teams coming over for the week. You had teams coming from Tunisia, South Africa, as well as all across Europe coming over weeks in advance to practice.”
Eighteen countries battled for the men’s title with 11 nations competing in the female competition. An estimated 250 competitors and 100 team officials were present in Wexford for the prestigious tournament.
John O’Brien’s men’s side set their stall out early and managed to hold onto the top spot for the first two days before slipping down the field on the third day. However, they fought back on the final day to take the overall title with Alan Mulcahy claiming an individual gold.
Meanwhile, the Ladies team, inspired by Lisa Gormley and captain Anne Whitty, led from the outset en route to claiming a historic double.
There were further celebrations when Gormley claimed individual silver while Whitty took bronze.
Anne Whitty, Bannow Bay SAC; Jane Cantwell, Wexford Garda SAC; Janet Snoddy, Glengormley and District SAC; Lisa Gormley, Glengormley and District SAC; Pat Short, Bray Sea Anglers; Linda Manton, Lisdoonvarna/Fanore SAC.
Martin Howlin, Wexford SAC; Alan Mulcahy, Rinnashark SAC; Harry McKee Jnr, East Antrim Surfcasters SAC; Joe Byrne, Kilmuckridge SAC; Paul Tyndall, Ballybrack SAC; Tim O’Sullivan, Galway Bay SAC.