Aidan to lead in Australia


The squad for the forthcoming International Rules series in Australia was named today. As had been trailed in advance, it was announced that Aidan O’Shea will captain the Irish team in next month’s two-match series Down Under with Monaghan’s Conor McManus serving as vice-captain.

In all there are four Mayo lads on the squad named today by manager Joe Kernan. Three of them – Aidan, Brendan Harrison and Chris Barrett – were prominent members of this year’s championship team while the fourth, Pearse Hanley, is a long-serving export to the AFL. Kerry have three players on the squad, Monaghan and Tyrone have two each and there’s a sprinkling of others from a variety of counties. The full list is here.

Long-time readers will know I’ve little time for this international experiment and I’d be as well pleased if our lads – like the Dubs – had nothing to do with it. I recognise, though, that the players themselves value being part of it – in particular being involved in a touring squad – and, if so, good luck to them.

Some will, no doubt, be concerned that the three lads involved in this year’s championship campaign could do with a rest at this point of the year. While I’d share those worries to a certain extent it is worth noting that all three made belated starts to this year.

Brendan Harrison first lined out for the county in the Round 5 League match against Cavan in mid-March (having come on as a sub against Dublin in the previous round), while Chris Barrett made his first appearance in the following round, away to Tyrone. Aidan, meanwhile, didn’t appear on the scene until the final round against Donegal, though he did so with effect from the bench that day.

Anyway, congrats to the lads on their selection and the best of luck to them Down Under.

46 thoughts on “Aidan to lead in Australia

  1. Same WJ, not much inthrest in this stuff but sure it might do them no harm at all. A small reward for their hard years efforts.
    Watching Pearse Hanley playing will be hard..especially if he plays well…like the girlfriend that got away..always wondering what would have happened if they stayed…better off not seeing them at all.
    Now let be the start and end of the Pearse Hanley discussion here and don’t ye be goin breakin my heart..!!
    I’ve logs to cut and the nights are closin in…rapid..

  2. Well Aiden has created a media frenzy this evening!! Huge media interest as expected.good luck Aiden. Oh stop re Pearse Hanley..what could have been. I just hope Aiden and the guys dont get injured-that would be a disaster. Awaiting patiently on county board on Management announcement. Please let there be no last minute hitches.

  3. Congrats to Aiden and the rest of the lads. Regardless of our view on the competition it has got to be a huge honour to represent ones country and an even greater honour to be captain. Shame about the non participation of the wonderful dubs and there was me thinking they were auditioning for this team in the last few minutes of the AIF as they systematically pulled Mayo players to the ground. Still I suppose they were afraid they might not get their dinners handed to them down under and of course they are probably aware that there are some tough boys in Australian team and that Joe Mc would not be reffing

  4. I wouldn’t be the biggest follower of it either but I can see the appeal. These are young men and human after all and not wise robots beyond their years. They are dead right if circumstances permit to avail of an all expenses paid holiday because in truth that’s all it really is. Can’t see too many of them busting a gut and I’d say a blind eye is given to the odd bottle of corona with lime of course. Travel a little bit of the world, see the sights and get treated well.. what’s not to like? It’s a long way from get treated like shite because you sign a kids autograph in Meath or been turned upon by your own County faithful even when you give everything to the cause. I say enjoy every last minute of it.. life’s for living.. it’ll be soon enough that these lads will be back do in sprints in rain and hailstones.

  5. Fair to to our lads , mayo well represented ,
    Hopefully we don’t end up with injuries, that would be a bloody disaster , not sure how I view this Aussie rules lark , thought feet up ,rest and a few footballing free weeks would be best option , but sure what would I know ! 🙂

    Agreed @goagain2018
    Dying to hear the outcome of this supposed meeting , hopefully no changes management wise.

  6. Congratulations to Aidan on this, I do not have any interest in this one but I know it has widespread appeal for some reason. Looking forward to the Intermediate final replay. Enjoyed watching Mulderrig, Charlton, and McDonald to name a few. If it is a good as the first bout that will do.

  7. Having played a bit of AFL and compromised rules I think it’s all good fun. Sure it’s not live or die stuff but a nice run out on a fast pitch and a trip away from home could be just what the doctor ordered.

  8. Just saw now – absolutely fantastic news and great to be covering more than just next year. Serious dedication on Stephen’s part which we should all be grateful for!

  9. Best luck Stephen. We right behind you and Team. Thanks for all the hard work. It the most pressurised job.
    Good luck in coming year. We have to believe! We are ready in this house anyways to go again!!(Would have liked that our excellent backroom team and selectors were confirmed tonight too)

  10. Delighted with this news , two year extension, happy days , as said above we are right behind Stephen and that lads , super excited can’t wait to get going again . 🙂

  11. – Congrats AOS on being appointed captain
    – RTE News Now reporting that Rochford ratified as Manager until 2020. Good.

  12. Brilliant news,just hope everything goes well for him and squad, we must win Sam next year

  13. Well done to Aidan, it is a great honour to Captain you’re country.
    Really think this is such great news re. Stephen – such commitment, it’s fantastic. I don’t know how he finds the time, very grateful to have him commit for 2 more years. Up Mayo.

  14. Wasnt expecting that news..Would have been a big commitment for 1 more year and he goes and takes 3..Delighted and impressed at the same time..Is it normally just manager ratified and coaching staff come at later date??

  15. Was doubts he would walk away this year so Stephen is really giving commitment for another 3 years and that means he will oversea a lot of retirements and transitional period if he stays for 3 years. Backroom team not confirmed yet and some of them are as important as Rochford if arguably not more important.

  16. Great news to hear the manager is staying. Very important that the remaining members of the management team are staying involved also. Had my doubts earlier but this fantastic news

  17. Firstly, well done Aido. No better role model in the Country imo. Nice holiday out to Oz an a bit of ball in between.

    Secondly, Fair play to Stephen for commiting till 2020. I’d heard it through reliable sources he was staying on, but held my whist on this blog till it became public. I have absolutely no doubt we’ll be competing for big ears next September, Connacht draw could have been nicer, but, we’ll be ready to show Galway who’s boss, have no doubts about it!!.

  18. look draw is what it is time to move on delighted to stephen back with mayo maybe he might take down the dubs next year.

  19. I wouldn’t look into the three year thing too much. If things went really bad next year for Stephen ( there is nothing to suggest things will go bad) I think Stephen would review his own position himself. He is an intelligent man. Think he got 95% of the big calls right this year – that’s as good as any manager including the “great” Jim Gavin.

  20. Firstly Rip Joe, a class act.
    Congrats Aidan on being appointed captain of our country and to Stephen on his extension as Mayo manager.
    Can anyone confirm if it’s two years including next year or three in total.

  21. Great news about manager staying to finish the job. I’m sure he’s going to be joined by the same backroom, there’s no way Buckley would walk out, he’s helped build this team and could not let someone else take the glory that is very near.
    Congrats to AOS and his Mayo comrades, whatever you do, don’t get hurt in this Ozzie thing. Too bad dublin are not represented by one or two of their “hard” guys, it would be interesting to see one of them trying their gouging on a fella that would be able and willing to reply in kind with the fists. It wouldn’t happen.

  22. Willie Joe
    whenever we place ‘Sam’ in the bag would you ever consider releasing all the ‘deleted’ posts; would be sexy reading

  23. Dave – Would you like the 5 Dublin players ( assume you are referring to Mcmahon mostly ) miss playing in a county final for their club to play a Mickey Mouse jolly up? He s already played this nonsense and survived. Time for the gaa to opt out of this rubbish and kill it dead.

  24. Well done Aidan, Chrissy and Brendan. I hope the lads have a great time on the trip. Delighted Stephen is with us til 2020 too we can make that break through and bring Sam to McHale Park very soon.

  25. Ger 71 – what about the rest of the Dublin panel? Can’t all have injuries or the euphemistic “work commitments” excuse. Sounds like a diktat to me. Or partied-out maybe? Not even one or two could make themselves available? Is this fair to the 000’s of Dubs and the rest of the Irish living in Australia who would love to see a reigning All-Ireland champion or two. Being All-Ireland champions carries a certain responsibility to the organisation I would have thought. And don’t give me that excuse about travelling long distances. Nearly every other county’s players have to do that week-in, week-out. GAA commentators have been surprisingly silent since yesterday. I wonder why…..

  26. Who on the senior squad would make the cut for the rules team?

    Philly McMahon.
    James McCarthy.
    Diarmuid Connolly.
    Brian Fenton.

    Dean Rock.
    Paul Flynn.

    I can’t think of anyone else who would be suited. Very, very maybe Cooper, but that’s pushing it, I think.

  27. You can only go if you are asked. He asked some of them who were on club duty. . He did nt ask all of them .

  28. Jaden

    Are you joking? A team that pulverized every team in Ireland this summer, bar 1 and you’re saying there’s only a handful suitable?
    What happened? Where did all the rest go to?

  29. Ger71 – I’ve taken a bit out of your comment there. That’s the second time today I’ve had to do this and for the same reason, which is that you appear intent on baiting other posters. That sort of crack isn’t welcome here so give over on it and stop causing me annoyance.

  30. Ger 71- I’ve made my point and don’t wish to get into a prolonged discussion with you or anyone else on it but what you say viz. “that you can only go if you are asked and he asked some who were on club duty” is fake news. IIR Manager Joe Kernan said on Newstalk Breakfast this morning, and was widely quoted elsewhere: “I spoke to a number of Dublin players who had holiday plans and work commitments”.

  31. That’s not the point, Ger71. This isn’t Facebook or Twitter and so isn’t the place for smart-arsed put-downs or comments aimed at rising others. There are plenty of other places online if that’s the kind of interaction you’re looking for.

  32. Great news to have Stephen Rochford secured for the next few years, and congrats to Aidan, he is a natural leader. To have this recognised by a man of Joe Kiernans statue outside the county says it all!!!

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