Ballinhassig GAA Club was officially formed in 1886, after a sparse early existence it reformed in 1945.
Ballinhassig GAA Club has been a central part of Ballinhassig Parish for over 125years. It is primarily a hurling club but fields football teams also in Junior A, Junior B, Under 21 and Minor grades. In Hurling we field a Premier Intermediate team, Junior A, Junior B, Under 21 and Minor teams. Ballinhassig also has an underage section which caters for players from age 6 to 16 playing hurling and football.
On the hurling field we have recorded incredible amounts of success since the 1940's. The only previous record of success was a Junior A South East Championship won in 1928. The club won Junior A South East Championships in 1946 and 1948 followed on by a four in a row of titles from 1953 to 1956. We made our first appearance in a Junior A County Championship Final in November 1954 but were defeated by a point by Castlemagner. Another three in a row was added from 1960 to 1962. After a achieving back to back South East Junior A Hurling Championship titles in 1964 and 1965 the County Junior A Hurling Championship was finally won on the 21st November 1965 after a Donal Coleman captained side defeated Brian Dillons in a match played in Carrigaline.
The 1970's would bring the most successful period of Ballinhassig GAA's history. Also it appears in this era that the huge rivalry between Ballinhassig and Ballymartle was cemented after the two clubs met in the South East Junior A Final three times with Ballinhassig winning titles against their old enemies in 1970,1971 and 1973. In 1973 Ballinhassig won their second Junior A Hurling County championship defeating Meelin in the County Final played in Coachford on the 7th November 1973. This team was captained by John Kevin Coleman
The club then took the step up to Intermediate hurling in 1974 and in 1975 won the Cork County Intermediate Hurling Championship for the first time. Ballinhassig defeated Blackrock on a score line of 3 12 to 2 5 in 1975 with the team captain being John Joe Spillane. In 1976 Ballinhassig competed in the Cork County Senior Hurling Championship for the first time and were defeated by Glen Rovers who consequently went on to win the Cork, Munster and All Ireland Senior Hurling Championships that year. Ballinhassig regraded to play Intermediate Hurling again in 1977 and once again went all the way and won a second Intermediate Hurling County Championship for the club. The final in 1977 was against Ballyhea and Ballinhassig were victorious on a 1 16 to 1 11 score line. The 1977 captain was Tim F Hayes. However the club decided against upgrading to Senior Hurling after this victory. After this the club played Intermediate Hurling, losing one county final in 1983 to Cloughduv, until 1990 when it regraded to Junior Hurling once again.
The Nineties were a decade of once more unparalled success in the South East Junior A hurling Championship. South East Junior A Hurling Championship titles were won in 1991,1992,1994,1995,1996 and 1998. However County success eluded the club throughout the nineties with a County Final defeat to a Joe Deane inspired Killeagh in 1995 being the closest the club came to County success. In the late nineties however a core of Minor hurlers began to emerge which would propel the club to unrivalled success in the 2000's. South East Minor A Hurling titles were won in 1998,1999 and 2000 with a County Final defeat to Erins Own in 1998.
2000 - 2010
In 2000 the South East Under 21 Hurling Championship was won for the first time since 1979. It was quickly followed up by another title in 2001 but County success eluded the side on both occasions. Another Junior A South East title was added in 2000 but a very young side had to settle for the runners up spot again, defeated by Nemo Rangers in Pairc Ui Chaoimh.
2002 was the year the club would hold dearly as the most successful year in its history. First up it was the Minor A Hurlers who after defeating Tracton in the South East Hurling Final went all the way and won the clubs first ever Minor A Cork County Championship title defeating Doneraile in Pairc Ui Rinn. Later in the year after thirteen long years as a Junior club and twenty seven years after its last Adult Hurling County win Ballinhassig defeated Fr.O'Neills in an epic Junior A hurling county championship final played in Pairc Ui Chaoimh. Captain of this team was James Aherne. With the advent of Munster and All Ireland championships in Junior level Ballinhassig went on to become Munster Junior Hurling champions by defeating Ballinahinch of Tipperary in the Munster Final. In early 2003 Ballinhassig became All Ireland Junior Hurling Champions defeating Black and Whites of Kilkenny in Walsh Park, Waterford.
Since 2002 the club has been on an upward slope and has competed in the Premier Minor Hurling championship from 2003 to 2009 barring one year 2007 in which they won the South East Minor Hurling Championship. After two unsuccessful years in 2003 and 2004 Ballinhassig regained their status as a Senior Hurling club after winning the Cork County Premier Intermediate Hurling Championship in October 2005. After a tense struggle the score line read Ballinhassig 1-16 Aghada 1-11 in a game played in Pairc Ui Rinn and the team was captained by Martin Coleman Jnr. After defeating Inagh of Co. Clare and Ballyduff Upper of Co. Waterford Ballinhassig claimed the Munster Intermediate Hurling Championship in late 2005. Ballinhassig now became the first club to be Munster Junior and Intermediate Hurling Champions. The club then travelled to London to play Fr.Murphys in the All Intermediate Hurling Championship and after defeating them then defeated Glenariff from Co. Antrim in the semi-final. On the 12th February 2006 Ballinhassig stepped onto the field in Croke Park to take on Dicksboro of Kilkenny in the All Ireland Intermediate Hurling Championship Final. However defeat was the clubs lot on the day by the minimum one point.
In 2006 in the clubs first Senior Hurling Championship game since 1976 we drew and then beat Na Piarsaigh who were Senior County Champions in 2004. However Newtownshandrum defeated the team in the next round that year.2006 also saw the clubs second team win the South East Junior A Hurling title for the 24th time. 2007 saw a South East Minor Hurling Championship being won and another South East Under 21 Hurling Championship. 2007 also saw the club win its first ever Senior Hurling title by defeating Glen Rovers in the Senior Hurling League Final played in early 2008 and the club backed up this title by retaining the Senior Hurling League of 2008 by defeating Newtownshandrum played in early 2009.In late 2009 the Ballinhassig Senior Hurlers reached the Semi Final of the All Ireland Sevens Hurling tournament in Kilmacud Crokes in Dublin. 2009 proved to be an extremely successful year with the clubs 25th Junior A Hurling South East title being won. Our Under 21's then added a 6th South East Under 21 Hurling Championship, the fifth South East Under 21 Hurling Championship between 2000 and 2009.
The club has provided many hurlers to Cork hurling teams over the years. Con Cottrell played for Cork in the 1940s and won four All Ireland Medals and five Munster Championship medals between 1941 and 1947. Martin Coleman Snr won 6 Munster Senior Championships in the 1970's and 4 All Ireland Senior Medals in 1970, 1976,1977 and 1978. Coleman also won a Minor All Ireland Championship in 1967 and 2 Under 21 All Ireland Championships in 1970 and 1971. We have one member with an All Star medal, Seanie McCarthy in 1992. Seanie also won two All Ireland Senior Championship medals in 1986 and 1990. Recently Brendan Lombard won an All Ireland Minor Hurling Medal in 1998 and Martin Coleman Jnr won an All Ireland Minor Hurling Medal in 2001. Martin Coleman Jnr was on the Cork Senior Hurling Panel from 2003 to 2012 winning All Ireland Medals in 2004 and 2005, he played championship hurling for Cork against Galway in 2008. Currently Patrick Collins and Ger Collins are Cork Senior Hurling Panel members.
We also have had recent All Ireland Intermediate Hurling Championship medals won by Darren Dineen, Brendan Lombard, Brendan Coleman, Fintan O'Leary and Steven Dineen with Darren and Brendan captaining two of these winning sides. Michael Aherne, Matthew Collins, Daniel O'Callaghan, Fintan O'Leary and Brendan Coleman have recently won Munster Minor and U21 Hurling Munster Championship medals.
Fintan O'Leary has won two Fitzgibbon Cup medals and a Freshers All Ireland hurling medal with WIT in the past few years as well as Matthew Collins who was player and Chairman of UCC when they won the Fitzgibbon Cup in 2009. Shane McCarthy and Michael Desmond won Freshers All Ireland hurling medals in 2009 with CIT. Ballinhassig has been represented in Secondary Schools hurling and football competitions down through the years with players featuring on successful teams in Spioraid Naomh, Colaiste Chriost Ri, Bishopstown Community School, Kinsale Community School, Hamilton High School Bandon and St. Brogans College Bandon.
In the past fifteen years Ballinhassig has been represented on the Cork Vocational Hurling Team by Brendan Lombard, Diarmuid Duggan, Danny O'Callaghan, Brendan Coleman , Mike Sheehan, Brendan Holland and Michael Desmond.
Overall the club is in a healthy state on the playing fields and is currently developing ground to cater for the growing needs of the club. Land has been purchased in Ballinabouy just above Ballinhassig village which will provide the club with two extra pitches and new dressing rooms and better facilities.