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Mum Miriam feels daughters' All-Ireland misery

A MUM really does feel the pain of her children -- and these are the pictures to prove it.

Miriam O'Callaghan shows subtle signs of motherly distress as her daughters lost out in a difficult All Ireland basketball final.

Twins Jessica and Georgia McGurk were inconsolable after their Under 19 C team at Alexandra College were pipped to the post at the National Basketball Arena in Tallaght yesterday.

The girls' dreams were dashed when they were eventually beaten by skillful Abbey Vocational School from Donegal, defeated by 74 points to 29.

Prime Time's Miriam O'Callaghan could only empathise from the sidelines at her daughters' disappointment.

More than 8,000 supporters attended the finals over the three days, which were held at the Arena, but the two Dublin teams taking part left empty handed.

The Under 19 Dublin Boys winners, Chanel College, were beaten by another Donegal team, St Eunan's from Letterkenny.

The McGurk girls have been regulars on the team alongside rising sports stars Jane Egan and Aisling Burke.

Last month the twins helped their team to victory at the Dublin girls' final with a dramatic 27 to 25 win over Colaiste Chiarain from Leixlip.

The twins are Miriam's children with her first husband, broadcaster Tom McGurk, along with Allanah (22) and Clara (18).

The eldest of the McGurk and O'Callaghan girls, Allanah, is already making waves in the modelling scene after she was signed up by a prestigious agency.

"I've always had an interest in modelling and in the fashion industry," she said recently.

"The opportunity to join the agency arose at the right time for me and I'm looking forward to working in the industry, while continuing my studies at The King's Inns."

Miriam noted that she hoped that Allanah wouldn't completely follow in her footsteps when it came to her career choices.

"Alannah is studying to be a lawyer like her mum, but let's hope she doesn't give it up like me," Miriam said.

Full report see page 61 in today's Herald