Tuesday 23 January 2018

Celebrity candidates for the park on the sidelines for pitch battle

Mark Hilliard

WHO needs a battle of bainisteoirs when you can watch the posturing of two potential presidents?

Yesterday, Dana Rosemary Scallon strolled the sidelines of a GAA pitch in Kilcullen, Co Kildare, as her 'Celebrity Bainisteoir' football team played that of RTE radio personality Brenda Donohue.

But far across the field her more formidable rival, the legendary GAA broadcaster Micheal O Muircheartaigh, sat in his commentary box looking out over an approving audience.

Both enjoyed the rapture of the crowd but neither would say whether they were up for a real fight this October.

Mr O Muircheartaigh said he would make an announcement on his speculated presidential run by the end of the week, before strolling off to the sanctuary of his lofty box.

"(I haven't decided) yet because I'm still on holidays and I am going back down to Dingle today," he said.

"Hopefully I will catch a bit of the Kerry match here first. I will think about it down there and it (a decision) will be before the end of the week."

The 80-year-old was clearly comfortable in his natural habitat -- but the same couldn't be said for Dana, whose Derry club Lissan battled Ms Donohue's home club of Kilcullen.

All the while the former Eurovision singer was walking up and down the touchline, gripping a redundant clipboard and looking slightly unsure of what to do next.

She was certainly more candid about her thoughts on the highest office in the land, if not quite ready to confirm her intention to capture it.

"At this stage I truly haven't made a decision but the people of this country have been pushed to the point where they realise that their own decision-making is out of their hands," she said in the midst of her team's victory celebrations.

Challenge

"We can't leave the keys to the park to the politicians. I would hope that I would be able to (do the job) but that is for the people to decide. I am up for any challenge."

Now in its fourth series, 'Celebrity Bainisteoir' -- the show where eight well-known personalities battle it out as managers of rival clubs -- has enjoyed remarkable success with an average of around 400,000 viewers per episode.

Irish Independent

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