Monday 19 March 2018

Family ties cast aside as green and blue tribes set for battle

Darren McCann and barmaid Aileen O'Sullivan
Publican Darren McCann and barmaid Aileen O'Sullivan
Former Kerry player Paidi O Se and son Padraig erect a banner ahead of Sunday's final
Breda and Denny Murphy prepare for battle

Majella O'Sullivan

IT'S called being caught between a rock and a hard place -- Kerry to the core but related by marriage to Dublin football royalty.

Denny Murphy might be the chairman of Killarney Legion GAA -- the home club of James O'Donoghue who's been named as a substitute for Sunday's All-Ireland final -- but there'll be as many blue flags on his house as there'll be green and gold.

Denny's wife Breda is a true-blue Dub and a sister to secretary of the Dublin County Board, John Costello.

Although she's been married to a Kerry man for the last 27 years, on Sunday Breda Murphy will only have one allegiance.

Not only will she be cheering on the Dubs in the final but she'll also be shouting for her nephew Cormac Costello, who'll line out for Dublin in the minor game.

"I'm expecting Kerry to win by about four or five points, but Breda's quite optimistic about her own crowd," Denny told the Irish Independent.

Breda had other ideas about how things would pan out.

"It will be a close game but Dublin will win by two points," she predicted.

Fellow Dub Darren McCann, who owns An Bonnan Bui in Cahersiveen, will be hoping to garner some favour in the middle of enemy territory.


Darren is offering two pints for €5 during Sunday's game -- but only to football supporters who are willing to watch their team in the middle of a Dublin oasis, just a stone's throw from Colaiste na Sceilige where Kerry manager Jack O'Connor teaches.

"I'll be supporting both teams but it will be a great opportunity for people to get out and meet people. And although I'll be the only Dub, I'm hoping they'll accept me as one of their own," he said.

Principal of Colaiste na Sceilige, John O'Connor, said the atmosphere at the school was electric in the run-up to the final.

Not only is it where Jack O'Connor teaches Irish and English and is assistant principal, but past pupils Bryan Sheehan, Declan O'Sullivan and Cillian Young are all on the team and Adrian O'Connell has been named as a sub.

"Last year is the only year we didn't do something for Jack because Kerry weren't in it," Mr O'Connor said.

"We're very proud of him. He's a great role model for health and fitness and a very down to earth fellow as well."

Mark Greeley, of the Reel Fish and Chip shop in Dingle, was planning to put a Dublin flag up on the chimney of his house last night. It's the only place his children Ella (10), Faye (8) and Jack (3) won't be able to reach.

Married to Dingle native Claire Walsh, Mark says naming his son Jack was his only way of getting a 'Jackeen' into the household.

Irish Independent

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