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Connacht Tribune

Galway’s rising stars floor Rebels with brilliant second-half

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Galway midfielder Conor Fahy is at full stretch as he tries to hook Cork's Barry Murphy during Sunday's All-Ireland minor hurling final at Croke Park. Photos: Joe O'Shaughnessy.

Galway 2-17

Cork 2-15

THE Galway minors set the tone for a truly memorable day when defeating Cork in a thrilling All-Ireland minor hurling final, claiming the last minor title in the process. Jeffrey Lynskey’s side once again showed all of the qualities that have been so prevalent in their performances throughout the year on Sunday, overcoming a nervy start to eventually conquer the pre-match favourites.

Heart, spirit, skill, work rate, intensity, attitude, determination, teamwork – the list goes on, but you name it, this Galway side had it in spades. Seeing Darren Morrissey ascend the steps of the Hogan Stand to lift the Irish Press Cup one last time was recognition of the sacrifices made by players and management since the start of the year.

For winning an All-Ireland final does not come about easily. Sunday’s performance was months in the making and while many years those efforts go unrewarded, this time around it was Galway’s moment, but my how they made us sweat for it.

In the lead up to Sunday’s final, Lynskey spoke of how the Galway minors felt at home on the big stage in Croke Park, it was where they belonged, but for the first 20 minutes, they looked anything but at home, as the young Tribesmen appeared to be struggling with the magnitude of the occasion.

Granted they were hit with a sucker punch goal after only eight seconds, but across the board, Galway looked nervy. Forwards couldn’t win primary possession, backs found themselves competing with each other for the same ball, they were missing jab lifts and passes were going astray.

When Darach Fahy gifted possession to Craig Hanafin in the 16th minute, resulting in Cork’s second goal for corner forward Evan Sheehan, it looked as though a drubbing was on the cards, but credit to Galway, they stuck at it and eventually worked their way in to the game to the point where they totally dominated proceedings in the second half.

Robert Downey was Cork’s main aerial threat at full forward and with Darren Morrissey taking up a man-marking role on Brian Turnbull as expected, Mark Gill was redeployed to full back to keep tabs on the Glen Rovers man.

Immediately from the throw-in, Cork looked for Downey. Conor O’Callaghan sent in a long ball which Downey brought to ground and the ball fell beautifully for Turnbull who pulled first time past the helpless Fahy in goal. Eight seconds gone, Cork one goal to the good.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune

Exploring the merits of moving into the west

Dave O'Connell

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Mary Kennedy with Carol Ho, one of the Galway interviewees for her new TG4 series, Moving West. Photo: Joe O’Shaughnessy.

Broadcaster Mary Kennedy has an abiding image of those early mornings when she’d set out from Dublin at the crack of dawn to begin work on another day’s filming down the country with Nationwide.

“I always liked to go in the morning rather than stay there the night before – so I’d be on the road early. And from the moment I’d hit Newland’s Cross, all I’d see was a line of traffic of people trying to make it from home to their workplace in Dublin,” she says.

These were people whose day began before dawn to get their bleary-eyed kids ready to drop at a childminder along the way, so they could be on time for work – and then race home to hopefully see those same kids before they went to sleep.

But if the pandemic had a positive, it was the realisation that work was something you did, not a place you went to. As a result, many people finally grasped the nettle, moving out of the city and sometimes even taking their work with them.

Which is why Mary – busier than ever since her supposed retirement from RTÉ – is presenting a new television series called Moving West, focusing on those individuals and families who have, as the title, suggests, relocated to the West.

One of the programmes comes from Galway, where Mary met with Stewart Forrest, who relocated with his family from South Africa to Oughterard, and Carol Ho, a Hong Kong native who has also settled in Galway.

The TG4 series also stops off in Sligo, Mayo, Kerry, Clare, Roscommon and Leitrim.

Read the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. Or you can download our digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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Connacht Tribune

Community’s tribute to one of their own – saving final cut of turf after his passing

Dave O'Connell

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Well saved...members of St Brendan's GAA Club honour their departed stalwart, John Geraghty, after a record-breaking evening saving his turf.

A local community responded in force to the death of one of their own – a man who had given so much of his life for the good of the parish – by paying one last practical tribute to him last week.

They lifted and footed his turf.

John Geraghty – or Gero as he was known – lived for Gaelic football and he’d filled every role imaginable with the St Brendan’s GAA Club since he came to live in Newbridge in 1983.

He’d cut the turf before he died last Tuesday week, but there it lay, until his old GAA friends organised a bunch of guys – made up of the football team, friends and neighbours – to meet in the bog last Wednesday evening to lift and foot/clamp John’s turf.

“Upwards of 50 fellas from the community showed up,” said St Brendan’s chairman Gerry Kilcommins.

Which was just as well, because, as Gerry acknowledged, John – himself a two-time chairman of the club in the past – had a lot of turf cut!

“It took up an area around three-quarters of the size of a standard football pitch,” he said.

Not that this proved a problem, given the enthusiasm with which they rolled up their sleeves for their old friend.

They started at 7.30pm and had it done at 7.55pm – that’s just 25 minutes from start to finish.

Read the full, heartwarming story – and the St Brendan’s GAA Club appreciation for John Geraghty – in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. Or you can download our digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

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Connacht Tribune

Liver donor dad would do it all again in a heartbeat

Denise McNamara

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Daddy’s girl…Sadhbh Browne with her very special message on organ donations. Photo: Joe O’Shaughnessy.

It is nearly two years since Paddy Browne gave his daughter Sadhbh part of his liver to save her life. And just ahead of Father’s Day, he reflects on how he would do it all over again in a heartbeat, without a single moment’s hesitation.

After an initial testing time in the first six weeks when they beat a path to the intensive care unit after the operation in St King’s Hospital in London, Sadhbh has never looked back.

“She’s thrived and thrived and thrived. She skips out to school every day. She loves the normal fun and devilment in the yard. She’s now six and started football with Mountbellew Moylough GAA, she loves baking, she’s a voracious reader – she’ll read the whole time out loud while we drive up to Crumlin [Children’s Hospital].”

But it could have all been so different.

Sadhbh from Mountbellew was diagnosed with Biliary Atresia shortly after she was born. She quickly underwent major surgery to drain bile from her liver. It worked well until she reached three years old when an infection caused severe liver damage and she was placed on the liver transplant list.

She was on a long list of medication to manage the consequences of advanced liver disease. While she lived a full life, she would tire very easily.

Paddy was undergoing the rigorous process to be accepted as a living donor when one of the tests ruled him unsuitable. His brother Michael stepped forward and was deemed a good match.

Then, further tests revealed that Paddy was in fact eligible for the operation and the previous result disregarded as a false positive.

Read the full, uplifting story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. Or you can download our digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

Organ Donor Cards can be obtained by phoning the Irish Kidney Association on 01 6205306 or Free text the word DONOR to 50050. You can also visit the website www.ika.ie/get-a-donor-card or download a free ‘digital organ donor card’ APP to your phone.

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