Risk and reward
AS the GAA edges closer to a return, anxiety levels are sure to rise. That’s a natural reaction to not knowing what will happen over the next weeks and months. Community transmission, north and south, seems to be low but it is still there. The likelihood is that some team will be impacted at some level, and the question is ‘is it all worthwhile?’ This is when risk and reward comes into play. Without a vaccination the disease is probably never going to disappear, so we will have to try and return to normal eventually. The next few months will let us know if we tried it too soon when it comes to Gaelic games.
Celebration of players
IN this week’s Gaelic Life, Paul McKillen talks about one of his favourite memories of playing hurling as being a Railway Cup tournament that was played over one weekend. He enjoyed it because it was a collection of the very best players, testing themselves against each other, but also socialising together as well. It is interesting because even back then, in the late ’80s and early ’90s, the Railway Cup was struggling. What I don’t understand is, if the players enjoy it so much, why does it have to stop? Why is there a need for massive crowds to keep an interprovincial event going? On the evidence of what McKillen was saying, playing interprovincial hurling was fantastic whether there were crowds or not. It was a great reward for players, why does the crowd have to define it?
Canavan will manage Tyrone one day
I RECENTLY spoke to former Fermanagh star Tommy McElroy for a feature that will appear in GL in the very near future. One of the things we spoke about was his Erne county managers, the good and the bad. What was clear was that he had the utmost respect for Peter Canavan even if results were not brilliant under the Red Hand God. McElroy found that hard to comprehend because Canavan did everything right, as far as McElroy could see. It made me think of when we will next see Canavan on the inter-county scene, and confirmed that it’s very likely that he will get his chance with Tyrone some day.
IN episode 26 of Take Your Points, Ronan McGuckin pointed out how he felt that the most important title to win was an All-Ireland Club Championship. You win it with your community, your family and your friends. But you could also argue that a club championship is a title that is the result of many years of hard work, built up from underage level. Unlike a county competition, like the Ulster or the All-Ireland series, which is usually the product of five or six years of development. A club team will win an All-Ireland if they have been working for decades before hand. With that in mind, it’s going to feel weird not having an Ulster Club competition in October or November, or an All-Ireland in the New Year.