Monthly Archives: April 2016

  1. Hats, Flags and Headbands: 6 Things we love about the Championship

    Hats, Flags and Headbands: 6 Things we love about the Championship

    Championship. It’s the time of the year again. The calm before the storm. How are your championship preparations coming along? Have you treated yourself to that jersey or maybe a new half zip? What about tickets? If you’re for the likes of the Tyrone / Derry game have you got yourself sorted yet? Have you the intestinal fortitude to chance a burger on the hill at Clones? Are you giving the man or woman beside you at work a few digs because they have the cheek to come from a lesser county? It’s the championship. And we love it.

    This Sunday

  2. Calling all Cúl Heroes to Croke Park

    Calling all Cúl Heroes to Croke Park

    Cúl Heroes, the official trading cards and magazine of the GAA/GPA, were launched today in Croke Park by brand ambassadors James McCarthy and TJ Reid.

    Other player ambassadors for Cúl Cards 2016 include Michael Murphy, Anthony Nash, Colm Cooper and Diarmuid O'Connor.

    Cúl Heroes is entering its second year on the market and aims to continue its promotion of Gaelic Games, the players and the unique skills of our national sport.

    This year's trading card collection includes 565 cards, including a mixture of players, county crests and trophies, as well as gold, silver and bronze cards.

    Because of the influence the GAA and its players has among young people; each card portrays a positive message around diet and emotional wellbeing. Cúl Heroes aims to be a positive influence in the lives of young people through an increased amount of messages this year such as "Feed your body with healthy food" and "It's good to talk to someone when you're

  3. The State of the Nation: Football Counties at a Glance

    The State of the Nation: Football Counties at a Glance

    Congratulations to Clare, Louth, Tyrone and Dublin on their League success in Croke Park over the weekend. And also to the GAA on the marvellous Laochra 1916 pageant. Now that the league’s done and dusted we take a look at the state of the nation. We mightn’t have a government just yet but we’ve a good idea of who the runners and riders will be for this Summer’s football championship.


    Quarters Contenders

    1. Dublin. Four in a row league titles, Jim Gavin has won nine of the ten trophies he could possibly have won since he assumed control. Despite losing a few personnel the Dubs are in ominous shape moving into the Championship. And as for that subs bench?

    2. Mayo. A decent league

  4. Answering Signals: Antrim on the Rise

    Answering Signals: Antrim on the Rise

    It's an important week for the Gaels of Antrim. Both the senior footballers and hurlers are in action tomorrow in matches that will set the tone for the remainder of the season. And this week we have also seen the launch of the Antrim jersey commemorating 1916 and the life of Roger Casement.

    It is worth reflecting on the GAA in a county that can honestly be described as a sleeping giant. When it rises, and rise it will, success will surely follow. We’ve seen over the years the success of clubs like St Galls and Loughiel in football, Cushendall and Dunloy in hurling. Transferring that confidence and competitive spirit to the county teams is surely only a matter of time.

    Roger Casement Antrim Jersey

    Yesterday was the official commemoration of Roger Casement's landing at Banna Strand in 1916. Earlier in the week we launched the Roger Casement

  5. Celtic Challenge Launch

    Celtic Challenge Launch


    19 Aibreán 2016

    Celtic Challenge Launch

    The GAA has launched details of a new national hurling competition that will celebrate mass participation and champion several exciting new initiatives in the game.

    The Celtic Challenge is a new hurling championship that starts in May this year and is targeted at 16 and 17 year-old hurlers who are not sitting State Examinations this summer.

    A total of 38 teams from across 31 counties and featuring county as well as regional sides will take part across seven groups that are determined on a geographical and developmental basis.

    There will be 1,000 players involved in a programme of 110 matches that take place over seven weeks starting on May 4. Details of the new comptitions were unveiled at Croke Park earlier today by Uachtarán Aogán Ó Fearghail and Paudie O'Néill, Chairperson of the Hurling Development

  6. Brothers in Arms: 8 Great GAA Families

    Brothers in Arms: 8 Great GAA Families

    The Brogans, the O Sé brothers, Eamonn and Neil McGee. What of the McEntees of Crossmaglen, Henry and Seamus Downey, or in Tyrone the Cavanaghs, the McMahons, the Donnellys Mattie and Richie and in Derry the McGoldrick clan? Monaghan’s Kieran and Darren Hughes. It's a feature of the GAA with its family ethos that you often don't see one brother without the other. Sometimes it’s hard to tell them apart. Often one lad suffers in the shadow of his sibling. What with wearing each other socks, lifting the wrong initialled and occasionally even getting a yellow card in the wrong.

    Pity the poor Irish mother. Bad enough going through the wringer over one son but imagine having two involved. It was said in Derry that the Downey’s mother could never bring herself to watch Seamus and Henry play. But play they did. Gaelic football and hurling are full of bands of brothers plying their trade. Some are more successful than others. Wrong it is too, to ask one how the

  7. Does Gaelic Football and Hurling need a Bonus Point?

    Does Gaelic Football and Hurling need a Bonus Point?

    Kerry for the League anyone? Can they defeat the Dubs? In hurling, will Waterford prevail over Limerick? And what of Clare against Kilkenny and a clash of styles in the other semi final.

    As the league in hurling and football move towards completion and the championship season is around the corner it is worth reflecting on a few interesting issues that have raised their head in the last couple of weeks.

    The Bonus Point Argument

    In recent weeks

  8. No Choke, Never Give Up, Never Let Up

    No Choke, Never Give Up, Never Let Up

    It is a mantra of Tyrone manager Mickey Harte never give up and never let up. Never give up because you never know when your opponent might make a slip and you must be on hand. Prepared, mentally and physically able to take advantage of any mistake.

    Never let up because no matter how far ahead you are on the scoreboard, you must continue to execute your game processes and skills as meticulously in the first minute as you should in the last. To do otherwise can let the opposition back in the game. There’s another term for it. Being ruthless.

    To do otherwise is to invite complacency and disaster. When Kilkenny surge ahead of an opponent, how often do you see them take the foot off the gas? Kilkenny

  9. Party like its 1916. Wear Your Commemorative Jersey with Pride

    Party like its 1916. Wear Your Commemorative Jersey with Pride

    One of the things we noticed throughout the national celebrations over Easter of the centenary of the Rising was how often our special O'Neills commemorative jersey appeared on camera. It's a time to be proud to be Irish and the centenary has allowed a lot of people to take stock and take some pride in our country.

    Later this month, the football national league finals fall on the 100th anniversary of the 1916 rising. To mark the centenary the GAA have arranged a celebration as part of Finals day at Croke Park. It marks the indelible mark that the association has had on parishes, villages and towns across Ireland over the last century or more. The loyalty to the club and club jersey down the decades defines the GAA.

    Speaking at the launch of the GAA 1916 Centenary GAA Director

  10. Five Finals: Fanfare for the Roscommon Man

    Five Finals: Fanfare for the Roscommon Man

    If we see Kevin McStay or any of the Roscommon players swinging on the Croke Park crossbar on Sunday we’ll know something’s up for sure. Yes, after winning the Division 2 final last year, the Rossies return to Croker for a tilt at Kerry renewing an occasional rivalry that existed in the forties during The Emergency and flared again in 1962 and 1980.

    Roscommon To Make 2016 All Ireland Final

    Should Roscommon make it past Kerry and qualify for the national league finals, the recent statistics suggest they have a 50% chance of featuring in the All Ireland Final in September. Not since Donegal won the league in 2007 have one of the two league finalists not featured in the All Ireland. Can they do it?

    The One That Got Away

    In 1980