Sunday 22 January 2017

Colm O'Rourke: Worthy champions do it the hard way and prove thatgood organisation and perseverance always pays off

Pat Gilroy's men rode their luck but when their chance came, they seized it, says Colm O'Rourke

Published 25/09/2011 | 05:00

Last Sunday was one of the greatest sporting occasions anyone could hope to enjoy. Perhaps not for the Dublin minors or Kerry seniors but for the neutral, there were two marvellous matches with drama heaped upon drama in both, and a level of bravery and endeavour which excited a watching nation, not to mention thousands overseas.

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I am party to giving the GAA at the highest level the odd short-arm tackle over the way they do business yet this was one time when it was a pleasure to be a member, and to admire the organisation of the day and the manly qualities of those providing the entertainment.

The sky has rained blue since Sunday as Dublin showed that with resilience and courage you can eventually get there. It was only by reading the programme that I realised the enormity of the task. Players like Bryan Cullen, Alan Brogan and Barry Cahill with seven Leinster medals had never played in September. There was a time before the back door that seven Leinsters would have translated into at least three or four All-Irelands.

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