Monthly Archives: June 2017

  1. We’re Not in Leinster Anymore, Are We?

    We’re Not in Leinster Anymore, Are We?

    A spaceman came travelling on his ship from afar, was light years of time since his mission did start, and over a village he halted: “Who’s Kilkenny playing in the Leinster final on Sunday?’

    Imagine his spaceman-shock when he was told it was Wexford in the final, not Kilkenny. And he nearly put the spaceship in the hedge when he heard they were playing Galway. It’s been light years since he was here, and you see no-one told him Galway’s not in Connacht anymore. Well it is, but it isn’t if you know what we mean. It’s a bit like Dorothy and Toto in the Wizard of Oz.

    Your spaceman’s sure Joe Canning

  2. Celtic Challenge A Successful Blueprint?

    Celtic Challenge A Successful Blueprint?

    Last weekend the Celtic Challenge hurling competition for under 17 hurlers drew to a close with Finals Day at Netwatch Cullen Park and Garvaghey in Tyrone.

    With interchange subs, regionalised teams to ensure competitive games, bonus point scoring, and a minimum of six competitive games, has the GAA devised a new competition structure to use in other competitions?

    At the very minimum, as a new departure from the GAA’s traditional competition structures, does the format of the Celtic Challenge offer a blueprint for underage participation in the years ahead in both codes?

    Players at all levels want meaningful competitive games and the Celtic Challenge is structured in such a way so that is achieved, and also it is designed to ensure that teams get a minimum of six games on protected scheduled dates. The

  3. Darragh Ó Se’s Column is Great Craic

    Darragh Ó Se’s Column is Great Craic

    Kerry against Cork. Munster Final. Normal service resumed. The most entertaining thing you’ll read this week is Darragh Ó Sé in his Irish Times column trying to convince his readers that Cork will beat the Kingdom. Don’t get us wrong, they may indeed do that. But it’s hard to take the great Ó Sé seriously.

    Seriously? He even has the brass neck to tell us that it’s not good ole ‘cute hoorism’ from Kerry - or plamás. His rationale? A few times in the 2000s Cork caught Kerry GAA. True they did. But a Kerry man writing this? Have to admit it brings a smile to the face, fair play to him. A

  4. Qualifiers Mini Previews

    Qualifiers Mini Previews

    Limerick v Wexford, Gaelic Grounds, Saturday 3pm

    Wexford, won five Allianz Football League Division Four matches winning promotion, and riding on the crest of a wave under the careful eye of new manager Seamus McEnaney.

    Since then things haven't gone just as smoothly and the Yellow bellies surprisingly lost to Carlow in their first Leinster championship match.

    Tiarnan Rossiter and Conor Carty will start  in the Gaelic Grounds, and Shane Roche is back in goal for a match that could be a banana skin.

    Limerick lost to Clare in Munster SFC  but the return of Danny Neville, Seamus O’Carroll, and Ger Collins means Wexford won’t get things their own way.

    London v Carlow,

  5. The Aurora Blog

    The Aurora Blog

    To mark the launch of our new women’s’ Aurora fitness range we’re flagging a few Instagram accounts and bloggers that offer inspiration, advice and insight.

    Covering a range of approaches to fitness, from serious lifters, to new mums seeking some advice on exercise, to regular gym users, to those among us that just want to get a bit fitter, feel a bit better and manage the day better with some exercise thrown in.

    We’ve highlighted a few people we think might interest you, and yes you might already follow them. They all looked like they’d something interesting to say and their own experiences often gave a little bit of light relief or they’ve said just the right thing at the right time. And to give you a flavour we’ve included a snippet from each. Enjoy. If you’ve any good recommendations, send them in and we’ll include in a future Aurora Blog.

    The Food Medic

    Dr Hazel Wallace /

  6. Cricket Ireland Wins its Biggest Test

    Cricket Ireland Wins its Biggest Test

    Huge congratulations to Cricket Ireland on another momentous day for the sport that has gone from strength to strength here in recent years. Yes, Ireland has been granted Full Test status and has finally taken her place among the top cricket nations of the earth.

    Following their meeting yesterday at the Oval in London, the International Cricket Council (ICC) made the historic decision to upgrade the status of Ireland and Afghanistan from associate to full member. This means Ireland can play Test matches against the world’s best cricketing countries. A mouthwatering prospect.


    It is the culmination of a combination of hard work by the players in a series of inspiring results over the years, the dedication of coaches on the ground to promote the game, and the leadership of Cricket Ireland, not least by Warren Deutrom, the Chief Executive.

    The news of Ireland’s was welcomed by Mr Deutrom: “It’s fantastic news

  7. Stats Explain the Sunday Game

    Stats Explain the Sunday Game

    Regular readers of the Irish News will know it has been publishing match facts and stats in real time for each Ulster championship matches so far. This Sunday it’s the turn of Donegal and Tyrone.

    At half time and again at full-time, via their social media accounts, you can check out what’s going on. The purpose is to enable you to understand what is happening in the game, when it matters, as it happens. And you don’t have to wait for a pundit to give their subjective view. For the GAA fan it offers a super insight into the day’s action. It’s immediate. It's insightful and it’s interesting.

    Judging by the popularity and frequency of stats and analysis even in underage club teams there is no doubt that an objective view of the game based on what is really happening is better than

  8. Bundoran or Bust For Tyrone?

    Bundoran or Bust For Tyrone?

    All the talk this week in the North West is of Tyrone and Donegal. Tyrone fans in recent years couldn’t even go to Bundoran for a day out without taking a slagging about the football.

    The teams met in last year’s Ulster Final, claimed by Mickey Harte as one of the best games he's seen in a while. At times it certainly was cat and mouse punctuated by superb scores by Ryan McHugh, Séan Cavanagh and Peter Harte, the latter two to win the game. But what can we expect on Sunday? Sulphurous, skillful and strategic are three things that come to mind.

    The games raise plenty of questions. What will be in store for Michael Murphy, will Justin McMahon reprise his role as the pantomime man-marking villain that enraged Donegal? Will Ryan McHugh dance

  9. The Weekend That Was for Wexford

    The Weekend That Was for Wexford

    Wins for Wexford, Galway and Monaghan, but 2016 All Ireland finalists Kilkenny and Mayo will survey the headlines wondering, where do we go from here? First up, Wexford.

    Boys of Wexford Become Men

    Brian Cody’s assessment of why Wexford won was simple and to the point. They scored more than us he said. And although that’s true, Wexford turned up in front of their home crowd fired up and ready for war. The

  10. Leitrim and Warwickshire Hurling Against the Odds

    Leitrim and Warwickshire Hurling Against the Odds

    In the first of the weekend’s hurling finals the Exiles of Warwickshire face Leitrim GAA. What distinguishes the so called ‘lesser’ competitions is that they aren’t lesser at all. In fact the passion for hurling among smaller counties with a narrow playing population is a zealous passion for the game. If you’re hurling and keeping the game above water in a weaker county you’re fighting a tougher battle than a player in the thick of it in the first Sunday in September.

    Exhibit A are Leitrim captain Karl McDermott’s comments to the website. It burns with a passion and commitment for the game