It’s the week for preening oneself about one’s plans for the Championship, by the looks of it. Hard on the heels of the GAA’s mean and moody launch of the football Championship earlier in the week, RTE yesterday unveiled what they’ll be doing in terms of covering all the Summer’s action.
They’ve a whole range of new fiddle-faddles, apparently, to provide all manner of meaningless statistics but basically it’s the same live action programme fronted by Smirking Michael Lyster and the evening highlights show anchored by Spiky Pet Spillane. All the usual suspects will be back on board too, with, of course, Podge and Rodge leading the way on the live broadcasts. We can expect the usual smart-ass nastiness from Brolly and O’Rourke purring about what a man’s game it is every time some poor unfortunate suffers a near decapitation on the pitch. Business as usual, in other words.
It’s Lyster’s 25th year on the trot doing The Sunday Game, which sort of makes him like a civil servant on the telly. Do you remember the cut of him when he started out in 1984, with that mop of dark hair, those pencil-thin ties and those lurid jumpers that himself and the late, great Enda Colleran used to wear? In fairness to Michael, the rest of us looked a sight back then as well (I know I certainly did – it was the Eighties, after all) and the ageing process we’ve undergone in the years since then hasn’t, unlike him, had to occur under the full glare of the Klieg lights.
TV3, meanwhile, have (or at least I read somewhere this morning that they had but I can’t locate a link to prove it) got the lugubrious Eugene McGee signed up as their football analyst for their slice of the live action, which, as we already know, will include dish ear‘s Connacht final. I like old Eugene: I know he can be a bit like a cranky old uncle at times but he sure knows his stuff (including how to beat Kerry in an All-Ireland final, which marks him out as something special, IMHO).