Longford Gaelic Stats
U-21 Hastings Cup (1986-2017)

Hastings Cup

The Hastings Cup was an inter-county U-21 tournament organised by Longford County Board from the 1986 season (starting in November 1985) to the 2017 season (ending in Feb 2017). It was the most successful U-21 tournament in the history of the GAA and was won by 13 different counties over the years. It was the brainchild of the then Longford county secretary, John Greene and came into existence because of the lack of competition for Under 21 grade at that time. John proposed to the Longford County Board in 1985 that the competition be based on the Under 16 Fr. Manning Cup tournament and that the Longford County Board should sponsor the trophy. Longford won the Hastings Cup in 1997, 2005, 2006 and 2013.

The cup itself was the old ‘Moto Weekend’ cup which had originally been presented by the Longford Arms Hotel to the Longford Chamber of Commerce for an inter-county senior game between Longford and another county at the end of a series of organised weekend business events in the 1960’s, all aimed at promoting business in Longford. The competition ended in the late 1960’s and the cup was gifted to the Longford County Board. This cup was repurposed, becoming the Hastings Cup.

Photograph: Ronnie Naylor/Western People

Photograph: Sourced via Google Sites

The cup was named after Liam Hastings (Liam O hOistin), a native of Drummin in Mayo who moved to Longford as a schools inspector in the 1950’s and became involved in the Longford Slashers club. Liam was a member of the great Mayo team of 1950-51 (image above), winning two All-Ireland titles. Liam won several Connacht Colleges medals with St. Jarlaths of Tuam, captaining them to the 1940 Connacht Colleges title. He also won a Mayo JFC medal with Westport in 1940. Between 1948 and 1952 he won four Connacht Senior Football Championship medals, and in 1950 and 1951 won an historic back-to-back of All-Ireland Senior Football Championship medals with Mayo. He also won a National Football League medal with Mayo in 1949 as well as three Kildare County SFC medals with Newbridge, and Sigerson Cup medals with UCD. During his time in Longford he became chairman of the Longford County Board and was one of a key few who were instrumental in the decision to purchase a new cup for the Longford Senior Football championship in 1960 which was named the Seán Connolly cup. During his term as County Board Chairman, the first dressing rooms and stand were built at Pearse Park. He was eventually transferred to Clonmel, but returned many times to Longford, giving a memorable speech during the celebrations following the National League win in 1966 when he spoke about how he regarded the victory as one of the greatest and most rewarding events of his life. Liam died suddenly a short few months later at the age of 44.

The competition originally included five teams from Longford, Leitrim, Westmeath, Roscommon and Cavan and was initially played on a league basis with the top two teams playing a final. Sligo joined the tournament shortly after, and by the 1992 season, Fermanagh and Monaghan had joined to make it an eight-county competition, and Donegal were added to the competition by the mid 1990’s, followed soon after by Galway, Mayo, Armagh, Offaly and a few years later by Tyrone and Down, Kildare and others as the competition grew in popularity. The competition included an impressive 24 counties by the 2002 season.

In 2003 a new GAA rule meant that the Longford County Board no longer had permission to run competitions with more than four teams. As a result, there was no Hastings Cup competition in 2003 while the following season the Hastings Cup returned as a smaller competition, scaled back to the four neighbouring counties of Longford, Cavan, Westmeath and Roscommon. By the 2015 season the number of teams was back up to sixteen teams, including Longford, Tipperary, Galway, Kildare, Kerry, Meath, Roscommon, Cavan, Mayo, Wicklow, Monaghan, Westmeath, Leitrim, Laois, Clare and Offaly. By 2016 that number had reduced back to eight counties… Longford, Cavan, Westmeath, Leitrim, Offaly, Roscommon, Meath, Wicklow. The change of grade from Under 21 to Under 20 in 2018 spelled the end for the Hastings Cup competition.

The Hastings Cup competition ended in February 2017, but it’s legacy lives on through the many team managers and top-class players who became household names and started their careers with their counties in the Hastings Cup. While the competition is no longer active, it has made a significant contribution to the GAA story.

U-21 Hastings Cup (1986-2017)

Titles Table

WonCountyYear Titles Won
9Roscommon1986, 1990, 1994, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2014, 2015
5Cavan1987, 1988, 1993, 2011, 2012
4Longford1997, 2005, 2006, 2013
2Donegal1995, 1998
2Westmeath1991, 2004
1Leitrim1992
1Armagh1996
1Sligo1999
1Tyrone2000
1Mayo2001
1Kildare2002
1Offaly2016
1Meath2017

U-21 Hastings Cup (1986-2017)

Roll of Honour

YearWinnerRunner-UpFinal Played
2017Meath 3-10Longford 1-14Feb 2017
2016Offaly 3-9Cavan 1-11Jan 2016
2015Roscommon 2-21Galway 1-11Feb 2015
2014Roscommon 0-13Meath 1-3Feb 2014
2013Longford 1-9Cavan 0-10Jan 2013
2012Cavan 2-15Longford 2-10Feb 2012
2011Cavan 0-12Roscommon 0-9Feb 2011
2010Roscommon 1-12Cavan 0-10Feb 2010
2009Roscommon 2-17Leitrim 2-6Jan 2009
2008Roscommon 0-18Longford 0-6Feb 2008
2007Roscommon 2-11Cavan 1-12Feb 2007
2006Longford 1-11Cavan 0-13Jan 2006
2005Longford 1-6Leitrim 1-5Jan 2005
2004Westmeath 0-14Longford 0-10Feb 2004
2003No Competition No Competition No Competition
2002Kildare 1-16Fermanagh 3-7Mar 2002
2001Mayo 0-21Tyrone 0-19Feb 2002
2000Tyrone 0-11Down 1-7Feb 2000
1999Sligo 1-10Monaghan 0-12Mar 1999
1998Donegal 1-11Roscommon 0-10Feb 1998
1997Longford 1-17Galway 1-11Apr 1998
1996Armagh 3-10Galway 0-11Apr 1996
1995Donegal 2-9Sligo 0-10July 1995
1994Roscommon 1-17Sligo 1-14May 1994
1993Cavan 0-12Leitrim 0-10Apr 1992
1992Leitrim 2-6Roscommon 1-8Mar 1992
1991Westmeath 4-5Leitrim 1-6Mar 1991
1990Roscommon 0-10Cavan 1-6Mar 1990
1989No Competition No Competition No Competition
1988Cavan 3-12Sligo 3-8Mar 1988
1987Cavan 3-8Leitrim 0-4Mar 1987
1986Roscommon 0-10Cavan 0-5Feb 1986

– No record found of any Hastings Cup competition in 1989. 
– 2003 Hastings Cup was cancelled due to a change in GAA rules.
– Hastings Cup competition last played in 2017 & discontinued thereafter.

This content was researched & compiled independently from 2014 to 2022.
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