Photo: Mayo Advertiser/Sportsfile
Chris Barrett has always been the kind of player who does his talking on the pitch. No more so than last year, when a succession of standout performances over the course of our long and winding road to September, topped by quite a sensational display in the All-Ireland final, propelled him to an All-Star award.
I doubt I was alone in being quite struck by the Belmullet man’s forthright and resolute speaking manner when he came up onto the podium at the Shelbourne Hotel to be interviewed by Mike Finnerty at the Mayo GAA lunch last December. Here, I reckoned, was one determined hombre, a footballer who clearly felt he had more business to do on the pitch in the year ahead.
Chris is back in the spotlight at the minute. He did some media work up here the other day and, arising from that, there are feature pieces with the All-Star defender in the Irish Independent, Irish Examiner, Irish Sun, Irish Mirror, RTÉ and The 42.
Needless to say, these all cover much the same ground. Chris looks back, with no little amount of regret, on last year’s All-Ireland final but it’s equally clear that he’s got his mind fully focused now on the challenges up ahead, specifically the ones likely to be posed by Galway in a few weeks time.
A player who hasn’t exactly had a good time on the injury front down the years, Chris missed all of this year’s League campaign arising from an injury picked up on international duty Down Under last back-end. By the sounds of it, though, he’s fit and ready for action once again, just in time for the start of the serious stuff this year. It’ll be great to have this top-class performer back in our ranks then.