Talking Points

O'Neills Official Blog

  1. Club Championships | The Heart of Hurling

    Club Championships | The Heart of Hurling

    Winter spent on a hurling field. A gym. On the wall. On the bus. In the alley. Off the beer. Dry January? No big deal if you’ve a match on the horizon. You have to brace yourself. A crisp night will add a sting to any sliotar. Drive them over the bar til’ you find one that suits. Christmas? Where did that go. There’s plenty of Christmases when you’re finished. The familiar craic on the bus. Maybe a box set on the DVD player. Love/Hate anyone? Laden with water. Fruit. A few bars. The craic is good. The lads are on form. And the hurling? The hurling’s why we’re here. You might get a crack at an All-Ireland semi every few years if you’re lucky. Could be a one off. All that work. All that time. All that effort. For one hours hurling. You wouldn’t have it any other way.


    Ballygunner. Seventeen years ago, the club’s only previous All-Ireland semi-final ended in a

  2. Club Hurling Finals | History favours Cork & Kilkenny Teams

    Club Hurling Finals | History favours Cork & Kilkenny Teams

    There’s a sound the sliotar makes hitting the wall in the warm up room in Croke Park. A cross between a click and a wet slap. As the balls are driven off the wall, occasionally they come into rhythm with one another, then out of sync. The sound fills the room, echoes until another puc takes over. Right side. Left side. Driving the butterflies and nerves off the blank wall. The Sliotar seam leaves a black mark like a sharpie stroke on the white wall. Poc. Poc. Poc. Get the eye in. the touch in. Before you step back into the changing room and a different noise overtakes you. A smell of liniment and Rub. The taste of a sports drink. The feel of ash and sliotar on palm. A table laden with water, fruit and juices. Pulling on the club jersey. Same as so many times before. But this time its different. Croke Park.


    Kilkenny playing Monaghan in a hurling All Ireland final. Sure that’s only going to end one way, on paper anyway. Just

  3. Seven Slow Burners for the National League

    Seven Slow Burners for the National League

    With the furore over three handpasses (and one and two bandpasses at times) the actual focus of the last month has been less on teams and more on reportage of the progress and prospects of individual counties. With a mixture of new and returning management teams, and county panels affected in the opening stages by Sigerson and club commitments, there’s an opportunity for a few teams to steal a march. Still at this stage of the year as the league starts, for most diehard fans the county jersey still gets the blood racing after a winter of doing little. Lets look at a few prospects.



    It’s a case of follow me up to Division 3 for Carlow after blowing fresh through 2018, so they should approach the season with a fair bit of optimism. In Turlough O’Brien they have one of the divisions most experienced managers, and a very able support

  4. Camogie: AIB All Ireland Club Semi Finals | Senior & Intermediate

    Camogie: AIB All Ireland Club Semi Finals | Senior & Intermediate


    Slaughtneil camogie. Going for three-in-a row and why not. Forged in the shadow of An Carn. The spine features the formidable trio that is the Ní Chasaide sisters, Aoife, Éilis and Bronagh, playing in the image of their late dad, the indomitable Thomas. Add in stylish defender, gaeilgeoir and co-captain Gráinne Ní Cathain, and rock solid sweeper Louise Dougan, they are an impressive outfit. And that’s before considering the attacking merits of Shannon Graham and former Offaly All Star camogie nominee Tina Hannon. Ni neart go cur le chéile, There is no strength without unity - the legend across the club jersey rings true. This is one united and unified group, and a hard one to break. The drive for three goes on.



    Ardrahan, they just love being written off and surprising folk? Why? Why is it a surprise? They have top class players. Galway senior and

  5. 2019 Club Semi Finals: Intermediate Football

    2019 Club Semi Finals: Intermediate Football

    Lightning strikes twice did they say? Two Mile House, four years apart. Winning Kildare and Leinster that is. 2014 and 2018. A Junior and now an Intermediate championship. But first there’s the challenge of Kilcummin. There’s stories and character round this team you wouldn’t believe! A man with a Kerry father called Caomhán Doolan, playing a provincial final and racing off for an exam still in his playing gear; an Old Timer and All Star in Peter Kelly and the inspiring words and resolute determination of Adam Burke. And what about the bizarre theatre of Didier Cordonnier, was he or wasn’t he sent off because of his name? All roads from Two Mile House lead to the Gaelic Grounds. Kilcummin await.

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  6. 2019 Club Semi Finals - Intermediate Hurling

    2019 Club Semi Finals - Intermediate Hurling

    St Galls. Runners up in this competition the year they won their historic football All Ireland. Always a dual club. Any club from the Glens will tell you the Milltown men always give it everything. Antrim senior finalists in 2014. Ten All Ireland campaigns in fifteen years. Sevens specialists in football too. Men like CJ and Kieran McGourty, Aodhan Gallagher, Karl Stewart and of course Sean and Conor ‘Je Suis Burkey’ Burke. Led by the indomitable Mickey Culbert, St Galls stalwart. Goals from CJ and Sean McAreavey steered a course to their second Ulster Intermediate hurling championship. In Ulster it was a late late Tómas Ó’Ciaran free that kept them in the match against Derry’s Swatragh before CJ McGourty - who else? - finished the argument with an extra time goal. Can they emulate their county compatriots O’Donovan Rossa who won the title in 2015? Bragging rights in Belfast up for grabs.


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  7. 2019 Club Semi Finals: Junior Hurling

    2019 Club Semi Finals: Junior Hurling

    Cloughduv is one of the oldest Hurling Clubs in Cork. With the first recorded match in the parish dating back to the time Cusack and the lads met up to set up the GAA Cloughduv had already been going around twenty years! One of their early successes was in winning the wonderfully named County Senior Beamish Shield. Winning the championship in 2018 meant the winter just got shorter and better for Cloughduv, after this superb victory in the Munster including nine points from Brian Verling. On their maiden voyage in this championship, the Cork and Munster champions...


    So hand me down my hurley

    And Jersey Green and Gold

    The cry has come

    Come on Cloughduv

    Think of the days of old.


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  8. 2019 Club Semi Finals: Junior Football

    2019 Club Semi Finals: Junior Football

    Easkey GAA. The Sea Blues. Coast home in Connacht? Certainly not in the cliffhanger final where Ryan McKenna’s late equaliser got them over the line. Just. Clonbur scores 1-8 to reel in an eleven point deficit when Easkey looked to be on the crest of a wave. Managed by club legend and Sligo Stalwart Dessie Sloyan, veteran of memorable Sligo campaigns in the 000s, Easkey went about winning the hard way and looked to be on the rocks. But for a place with two reef breaks, rocks only add to the excitement. We’re talking surfing of course, and Easkey, is one of Ireland’s most popular surfing destinations in Ireland. When waves break over rocks, they are known as reef breaks. Easkey has two reef breaks - one to the left, just by the river mouth and another to the right, east of the castle. Making waves is nothing to these guys. Everybody’s got a feeling, Surfin’ all the way?    


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  9. Ulster GAA Conference on Coaching the Coaches

    Ulster GAA Conference on Coaching the Coaches

    For 200 local coaches eager to learn, Cookstown was the place to be in November as the 15th O’Neill’s Ulster GAA Coaching and Games Development Conference took place in the Glenavon Hotel.


    The theme of the 2018 conference will focus on the Player Development Pathway. The latest event from the Ulster GAA coaching team highlighted once again the need for continuing coaching to keep our amateur club coaches up to speed on the latest thinking and ideas in preparing players to be the best they can be. Ulster GAA’s coaching director Dr Eugene Young said:


    “We were delighted with the attendance of 230 coaches at the conference. It shows there is still an appetite for learning and it bodes well for the future development of our young players and the next generation of GAA players. Coaches want to learn so that they know how to do the right work with players at the right age group.


    “I want to th

  10. Plus500 Brumbies to Partner with O'Neills

    Plus500 Brumbies to Partner with O'Neills

    The Plus500 Brumbies are delighted to announce a new partnership with kit manufacturer O’Neills which will see the firm become the Official Apparel Supplier of the club.
    Under the partnership O’Neills and the Brumbies will launch a new range of match apparel including home and away jersey’s with O’Neills also providing all elements of Brumbies staff and player’s official teamwear. They will, of course, also cater for fans with official club merchandise.

    O’Neills is a brand rich in heritage, renowned for being the largest sportswear manufacturing company in Ireland since being founded in 1918 and launched in Australia in 2015.
    O’Neill’s has an international reputation for providing the highest quality clothing and manufacture from their own fabrics allowing them to specially design garments to meet the short delivery dates dictated by the market. They will customise garments in their em