Wexford’s loss is Ireland’s gain as Marguerite Gore leaves to take up new position as GAA Handball Regional Development Officer
Wexford GAA Handball lost one of its brightest officials recently when Marguerite Gore stepped down from her role as County Coaching Officer to take up a full time position with GAA Handball Ireland. The announcement earlier this year that the GAA had sanctioned the creation of three new Regional Development Officers was welcomed throughout the sport and coming hard on the heels of the opening of the new National Handball Centre at Croke Park, points to an exciting time ahead for handball. Marguerite has been appointed on a three year contract and has been allocated Region 2, which includes Kerry, Cork, Limerick, Tipperary, Waterford, Kilkenny, Clare, Carlow, Wicklow, Laois and Wexford.
Marguerite Gore’s association with handball goes back a long way and as Marguerite Byrne (as she was then) she enjoyed considerable success as a juvenile back in the 1990s. Her first major success came in 1996 when she won the All Ireland under 15 softball singles title and she followed that by winning the premier under 16 singles championship the following year. How difficult it is to win that under 16 title can be gauged by the fact that, 25 years on, it remains Wexford’s only singles success at this age group. Around the same time Marguerite was also making a little bit of history at local level when she entered and won the boys county under 15 and 16 softball doubles titles in 1996 and ’97, alongside St. Marys’ clubmate Paddy Haughton.
Numerous adult county titles followed throughout the years in both codes and after she travelled to Minnesota for the World Championships back in 2018, she returned home to a rousing reception having won the Womens C singles title. Further honours came her way that year too when she became the first woman from the county to referee the All Ireland Ladies senior singles final at Croke Park.
In recent years Marguerite turned her attention to coaching and after working her way through the various courses, she qualified as a National Tutor at GAA Handball Ireland in 2022. Side by side with that she was a hard working volunteer with Wexford GAA Handball and after spending a few years as secretary of the county juvenile committee she was appointed County Coaching Officer in 2021.
Marguerite Gore has been immersed in the fabric of handball for many years and is therefore well aware of, and prepared for, the challenges associated with this new role. Her time in Wexford will stand to her in this regard and while she will be missed, she leaves with the good wishes of all on Slaneyside.