JOHN Whelan, head of the financial committee for Round Tower GAA club, announced his delight at the sports capital grant decision to allocate €178,000 to the Clondalkin club, a decision that will help launch phase two of their Monastery Road project.

It came at a particularly apt time with the first match being played on the new field last weekend.

“We’re delighted with the news, absolutely thrilled,” said Whelan. “We can look forward to launching phase two of our development programme for the club which will focus on flood-lighting the main pitch, adding a fence around the pitch and other auxiliary work.

“With the Monastery Road project already finished, this extra work will certainly put us among the best facilitated clubs in Dublin and hopefully attract even more people from the greater Clondalkin community.

“Already we have seen a massive surge in numbers since the Monastery Road project began. Our juvenile sessions have grown quite substantially and I believe, by the time we are done with phase two of it, we can get greater numbers again.”

Whelan also believes that the new facilities will give the teams a bigger boost when they take on the challenge of next season. The chief of the financial committee also didn’t rule out further development if it was going to develop the sport more in the area.

“I expect to see improvements right across the board when it comes to performance. We won plenty of promotions last season and Caimin Keane’s senior team pushed right to the final whistle in the promotion final. I think the new facilities will certainly put a pep in the step of the majority of teams.

“The main pitch is in a position to be used throughout next season, and, after seeing it being used in the inaugural game, I know it will be a huge boost to the teams that will use it.

“Phase two of the operation may take another year. But, when it’s done, I wouldn’t rule out further development. We are always looking to progress and if we can get more young people interested in the national sports that’s always a good thing.

“We’ll see where we are at when it’s done, but anything is possible for this club in the future,” said Whelan.

Elsewhere, Neilstown Boxing Club received a grant of €19,084 to help it in its continued efforts to provide improved facilities for the sweet science.