You know that old Christy Moore song, don’t you? Of course you do, it goes like this: “Patrick was a gentleman, he came from decent people/Built a church in Dublin town and on it put a steeple” etc. etc. (Moore, C, The Iron Behind the Velvet, Tara Records 1978). Well, it looks as if they might have to add a stanza or two at the end of it to include the National Saint’s part in that missile-throwing incident in McHale Park the other week because it now appears that said missile – may I introduce Exhibit A, m’lud, this well-licked wooden spoon? – was the rightful property of that well-known latter-day Saintly doppelganger who, in Civvie Street, goes by the name of Mr John Durcan. His version of the story, retold to Mike Finnerty in the Mayo News, is that earlier on in the afternoon he parted company with one of his spoons (he brings two to every game, apparently) and that it must have been one of the bowsies that lifted it who fecked it at Donaghy later on. This one looks set to run and run …
One man not smiling about the incident this morning is Kieran Donaghy himself, who has now been given a one-match ban for the manual gesticulations he aimed at his terrace-bound tormentors after St Patrick’s spoon went whistling past his ears. I feel a bit sorry for Star, I have to say, but of course he does have previous in this area so you can see why he’s getting his knuckles rapped on this occasion. It’s also slightly shocking to see the GAA disciplinary machinery move with such speed: is this just a pilot scheme or can we expect this kind of efficiency all the time now?
It’s also likely that the County Board will have little to smile about shortly as the Indo this morning reckons that they’re set to get hit with a “substantial” fine for the incident. We can have no complaints about any such sanction and the fine might help to concentrate minds in relation to finding out who was responsible.
Okay, enough of that – there’s football to talk about. The Mayo News has a good match report on that U21 championship clash with Leitrim at the weekend and it also has a piece on De Vins’ significant Mayo connections. Apart from Pat Kelly and Brian Maloney (and the rest of us, a-hootin’ and a-hollerin’ up in the stands), the Vins’ squad also included Carramore’s Alan Costello and Niall Dunne from Parke. As the report says, there’s a corner of Marino that will be forever Mayo. Sure, didn’t we know that already?
Liam McHale has taken over at Ballina, apparently. I sincerely hope he doesn’t decide to tread the sideline in those bermuda shorts of his.
Onto team news ahead of Sunday’s league clash with Kildare, this report says that Peadar Gardiner sustained a broken jaw in an accidental clash with Knockmore’s John Brogan at the weekend. Needless to say, he’s definitely out for Sunday (and for the remaining two league fixtures). Aidan Kilcoyne is apparently also a definite absentee for Sunday’s trip to Newbridge while it doesn’t look as if BJ’s injury has cleared up yet. The same report says that there are also doubts over the fitness of Trevor Mortimor, Liam O’Malley and Mickey Mullins but that the injury to Chris Barrett has now cleared up (he captained the U21s against Leitrim on Saturday and came through that game without any problems).
Johnno is quoted in that same piece saying that he expects Kildare to be “gung-ho” on Sunday. With Kieran McGeeney training them, I think that’s the minimum we can anticipate. This will be robust encounter on Sunday, I reckon. Johnno also says that Super Mac, James Nallen and Ger Brady will be “invited in” for a trial game shortly to see what part, if any, they might play in this year’s championship. The same report also says that we had a handy win over Louth in a challenge game last weekend.
Sean Rice looks forward to the Kildare match and back at the U21 match. What more could you ask for?
That’s it. Back tomorrow with some stuff on clashes of old with the Lilywhites.