Friday 23 February 2018

From the back fields to fever pitch in our game of giants

It was described as one of the best games of all time when Kilkenny met Tipperary earlier this month. Walter Walsh, pictured above Kilkenny, in action against Tipperary players, left to right, Paddy Stapleton, Cathal Barrett, and Pádraic Maher at Croke Park.
It was described as one of the best games of all time when Kilkenny met Tipperary earlier this month. Walter Walsh, pictured above Kilkenny, in action against Tipperary players, left to right, Paddy Stapleton, Cathal Barrett, and Pádraic Maher at Croke Park.

Marty Morrisey

This afternoon at around eight minutes to five o'clock on RTE Radio 1, my good friends and colleagues Des Cahill and Joanne Cantwell will hand over responsibility to Donal Og Cusack, and myself to broadcast the 2014 All Ireland Hurling Final Replay between Tipperary and Kilkenny.

As the parade begins, as the drums beat, as the trumpets sound and as the hurlers march, I will be privileged to hold the microphone that Micheal O'Hehir and Micheal O'Muircheartaigh once held, and spread the gospel of hurling to the masses.

But to be honest, I don't feel worthy to follow in their footsteps. I was lucky to be brought up for the first 11 years of my life in one of the greatest cities in the world. My parents had to emigrate and so I remember sitting in the apartment in Bainbridge Avenue in the Bronx and listening to every word Micheal O'Hehir uttered. We as a family were transported to Croke Park - we dreamt of being there and, in my case, scoring the goal in the dying minutes of the All-Ireland Final.

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