Thursday 8 December 2016

Taking offence is a national sport

Eamonn Sweeney

Published 26/07/2015 | 17:00

The latest frenzy was sparked by Mark James describing Paul Dunne in passing as a British player during the Open.
The latest frenzy was sparked by Mark James describing Paul Dunne in passing as a British player during the Open.

Is there anything dafter than Irish people working themselves into a lather because one of our sportspeople has been described as "British" across the water? The merest mention of it and we do our best impersonation of the village mob in Frankenstein, heading for the old mill with pitchforks and torches in hand.

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The latest frenzy was sparked by Mark James describing Paul Dunne in passing as a British player during the Open. Cue outrage, whining and bluster. When his mistake was pointed out to James on air the next day he made light of it with a jokey comment about wanting to be inclusive, something which apparently merely compounded his perfidy in the eyes of the offended.

This was the second such controversy in the past couple of weeks, the last one having been sparked by Conor McGregor being described as "British" on the BBC Sport website.

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