Saturday 10 December 2016

7 Wonders for this weekend

Peter Sweeney

Published 17/07/2015 | 02:30

Clare’s 1995 All-Ireland winning captain, Anthony Daly, will captain a team in a charity match to raise money for cancer
Clare’s 1995 All-Ireland winning captain, Anthony Daly, will captain a team in a charity match to raise money for cancer
Donegal's Eamon McGee has a keen interest in science as well as being an All-Ireland winner
Mayo's Alan Dillon admits to 'rookie mistake' as teammates hijack his Twitter account after leaving his phone unattended

1 Sunday Game flight of fancy takes 900,000 viewers back to World War II

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The Sunday Game Live really does bring its viewers (all 900,000 of them last weekend, apparently) to many weird and wonderful places.

This time it was Ger Loughnane's turn to take a verbal flight of fancy and transport us back to World War II. Really? Yes really. At half-time in the Munster hurling final he quoted classic BBC TV comedy Dad's Army, saying 'the Germans don't like it up 'em'. Here at Seven Wonders Towers we think he was talking about Waterford wiring into Tipperary (there's a far more GAA-appropriate phrase), but quite frankly, who cares!

2 Mayo star rues 'rookie mistake' after team-mates muscle in on twitter feed

The first rule of being on an inter-county squad? No, it's nothing like get your head down and work hard or not giving lip to the established players. It is, in fact, never, ever leave your mobile phone lying around and unlocked. If you do, you'll regret it. The latest to learn this was Mayo's Alan Dillon. Hot on the heels of last Christmas' fake Twitter retirement by captain Keith Higgins (he lost a bet and his team-mates made him post it) Dillon's phone was swiped during a recent post-training meal and a tweet sent out in praise of his own #guns (muscles, to the uninitiated). As he admitted, it was a 'rookie mistake'. We'd expect better of a man with more than ten years' senior experience.

3 One-minute video short sums up  92-year wait for Farney fans

Half of Monaghan - Conor McManus, his dad, Nudie Hughes, Paul Finlay and his sister, some of the Mone clan and the St Tiernach's groundsman included - features in a nice video short to help promote this weekend's Ulster final - the first time the county has been in three successive provincial finals in 92 years. Visit YouTube, search 'Monaghan 92 years'  and it'll bring you there. As mentioned here in previously, Dublin have embraced the digital age, and it's good to see Monaghan following suit.

4  Pentaquark Particles and Donegal football naturally go hand in hand

At first glance, Donegal's Eamon McGee would appear to be the typical country lad who plays no-nonsense football, enjoys a pint and takes life as it comes. Scratch a little under the surface (or just follow him on the Twitterbox) and you'll find he's one of the most interesting inter-county footballers around. Not only is he an All-Ireland winner, he's also a science nerd and was an enthusiastic Yes campaigner in the recent same sex marriage vote. Currently he's excited by the further exploration of Pluto and confirmation of the existence of Pentaquark particles (no, us neither).

5 Eircode causing havoc as whole towns move across county boundaries

This being Ireland, it was inevitable the new Eircode postal code system would be met with resistance. Sure, if we introduce post codes, how can the letter addressed to Pat 'The Bollix', County Kerry arrive with Pat Spillane (true story)? Eircode could also play havoc with the GAA, with the system annexing parishes into neighbouring counties. The latest to fall is Glenmore, moving from Kilkenny into Waterford. How the Deise could have done with hurlers like Christy Heffernan and Eddie and Willie O'Connor. . .

6 Cancer survivors and 1995 heroes line out to raise money for good causes

Tonight we're going to party like it's 1995! Well, actually, we're going to wait until August 8 in Parnell Park to do that. It's all in honour of Doc Hollywood. We're not sure who Doc Hollywood was, but it's a name worth honouring. Anthony Daly, Clare's '95 All-Ireland winning captain, will lead one team with Charlie Redmond, driving force behind Dublin's Sam Maguire win 20 years ago, skippering the other. All money raised will go towards cancer care at St Luke's and St James's hospitals, with cancer survivors Marty McGrath, Joe Deane and Noel McGrath among the players vying for the Professor Hollywood Memorial Cup.

7 GAA proves it's down with the kids by embracing cutting-edge social media

Speaking of the ongoing embrace of digital media, you may have thought that Snapchat was just for young people to send unseemly pictures of themselves, which disappear after ten seconds, to prospective suitors that they've probably met on Tinder (that's if you've ever heard of it). But you'd be wrong - it's also for the GAA. Dublin GAA, at least. You can follow the latest goings on of the Dubs on the mobile social platform. And you can also watch live streams provided by several county boards, the Ulster Council and the GAA (yes, central GAA in Croke Park) included on Periscope, which is owned by Twitter. It really is a new world.

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