Monthly Archives: June 2015
Over recent years there has been a steady stream of GAA players heading to Australia for work or extended holidays. Gaelic Games in Australia and in New Zealand have probably never been stronger. We take a look at some recent developments.
In March 2015 O’Neills opened its first Australian office headed up by Antoinette Brophy from Kildare, who moved Down Under to take on this role. Speaking at the time Antoinette told us: “There is some O’Neills brand awareness due to the fact that most of the Australian Gaelic football players have
“You've qualified for Féile if you want to go” stated the secretary, disgruntled perhaps.
“Do bears sleep in the woods”, or words to that effect, the u14 coach replied.
Perhaps the secretary was contemplating the fundraising cost of Féile rather than the long-term benefit, the inter club friendships and the opportunity to test your metal against quality opposition from another county. It's a great honour to head to either Féile na nGael or Féile na nÓg as your county champion. But that’s not the only benefit. Arguably it doesn’t even come into it.
It gives a lad or a girl a spring in their step; it brings an additional enthusiasm and buzz around the games and it can bond a team like no other.
For anyone who's ever been to Féile, they will agree that it’s the opportunity of a lifetime. A roadtrip with friends to a weekend of talking, thinking and playing football or hurling. If
Gaelic football. Played worldwide. The O’Neills All Ireland Gaelic football. Kicked around the world where Gaelic is played. The two are virtually interchangeable.
For GAA clubs setting up overseas, one of the first things they send home for is an authentic O’Neills All Ireland football. It just isn’t a Gaelic football match if you’re not using an O’Neills ball. It’s that simple.
Over time the O’Neills Gaelic football has become synonymous with our Gaelic games, the GAA, football and the Sunday Game. In the last twelve months alone hundreds of the O’Neills All Ireland balls have been shipped to teams worldwide. The O’Neills ball is kicked from San Francisco to New York, from Stockholm to Seville, from Amsterdam to Abu Dhabi and from Penang to Perth.
Anyone who’s ever been involved in a coaching or playing capacity with an intercounty Camogie team or Ladies Gaelic Football team will know that they work every bit as hard as their male counterparts. The difference? They get a fraction of the recognition, little of the reward and minimal media coverage. It’s the 21st Century now, and its time things changed.
For years players involved in Camogie or football maybe just accepted the way it was. But it became quickly apparent when they trained alongside their male equivalents, when they compared notes with their brothers or clubmates, or when they lifted a newspaper that the innovations coming thick and fast to the men’s game weren’t coming their way at all.
Treating Athletes the Same
For some county players simple innovations like a hot shower, food or physio after training were a foreign country. If that was the state of things for county players, imagine the situation at club level. Unreconstructed