Tuesday 28 February 2017

Seriously silly at Paddy Games

Colin Gleeson

TAKING silliness seriously was the order of the day as the inaugural Paddy Games took centre stage over the weekend.

The unusual international sports event -- which took place at the Mardyke Arena, Co Cork -- was aimed at competitors wishing to represent their country in a range of tongue-in-cheek categories.

While traditional track events involve athletes running forwards, Paddy Games' athletes run backwards, are three-legged, blindfolded, wear wellington boots, compete with broken legs and even crawl.

"Paddy Games is the theatre where a whole new breed of sports stars are born -- where participants respect the lighter side of life and place merit on being silly over and above being sensible," said a spokesman.

Other events included the pogo stick high jump, the high dive belly flop, and the crawling relay.

The event was organised by solicitor and former Sumo wrestler Colin Carroll.

In development since 2007, the games attracted around 200 competitors representing more than 15 countries in 30 different categories.

Mr Carroll has pledged the games won't be a one-off event and hopes to bring them to Northern Ireland as well.

"Make no mistake," he said, "we're going global. I've already started work on a Paddy Winter Olympics.

"I'd love to bring the games to Belfast and plan to do that in the next few years. People up there will love it and really get into the spirit of it," he added.

Irish Independent

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