Ganly, James Blandford (1904–76), cricket, rugby, and tennis international, was born 7 March 1904 in Balscadden, Howth, Co. Dublin, son of James Ganly, auctioneer, and Olive Ganly (née Blandford). Educated at St Columba's College, Rathfarnham, he had his first success at cricket; his headmaster was forced to detain him at school on the weekends when Irish international matches took place, so that he could play for his school and not his country. He entered TCD in 1922 and was a batsman for the university's cricket team till 1923, scoring nine half-centuries in two seasons, the highlight of which was 132 runs against the Civil Service in seventy-five minutes in the Phoenix Park. A regular for the Leinster cricket team after he left TCD without graduating, he returned to haunt his university side, with 173 runs scored against them at Rathmines in 1927. Of his twenty-five appearances for Ireland, eight of which were as captain, his most famous victory was against an unbeaten West Indies touring side at College Park in early June 1928. Putting the last West Indian batsman out with four minutes of play to spare, the Gentlemen of Ireland were helped to victory by the batting and fielding of T. G. McVeagh (qv). A keen rugby footballer, Ganly played for the club side Monkstown before the first of his twelve caps for Ireland, against France, in a 12–8 victory in Belfast in 1927. Scorer of seven international trys, he compensated for his slight build with his pace on the wing. His last cap was in 1930 and also against France, a 3–0 defeat in Paris. An internationally capped tennis player, he was a cattle salesman by profession and lived in Dublin throughout his life. He died on 22 July 1976 in a shooting accident near his holiday home at Oughterard, Co. Galway, and was survived by his wife.
Ir. Times, 5, 7 June 1928; Sean Diffley, The men in green (1973), 88–9; Edmund Van Esbeck, One hundred years of Irish rugby (1974); Ir. Times, 23 July 1976; Ir. Independent, 24, 26 July 1976; M. H. A. Milne, N. P. Perry, and M. Halliday, A history of the Dublin University Cricket Club (1982); Edmund Van Esbeck, The story of Irish rugby (1986); Terry Godwin, The complete international who's who of rugby (1987); John Bailey and Morgan Dockrell (ed.), St Columba's cricket (1993)