Friday 15 December 2017

No writer's cramp for top scribe Walsh

Eugene McGee

Eugene McGee

Kilkenny native David Walsh, who started his journalistic career with the 'Leitrim Observer', was last week named not only as National Union of Journalists UK Sportswriter of the Year, but also overall Journalist of the Year over there – a rare honour, indeed, for a sports writer.

His journalistic pursuit of the truth in relation to cyclist Lance Armstrong won him both titles, among many other writings, of course.

It is interesting to note in these times of GAA managers often being less than generous of their time to journalists that, back in 1982 in the lead-up to the famous All-Ireland final between Offaly and Kerry, times were very different.

In the week before that game Walsh, then working for the 'Sunday Tribune', was allowed to take part in a complete training session with the Offaly team – including team talks, and comments on Kerry players – and was given unlimited access to the Offaly players and mentors.

Maybe it was a commentary on the level of fitness of those times that a mere journalist like Walsh was able to complete the training session without getting sick.

Somehow one could not imagine team managers, or indeed journalists, repeating that exercise in the times we live in now.

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