Tuesday 16 October 2018

'I'd love to have sneaked him in' - Kieran Donaghy claims Joe Brolly would have enjoyed Gooch's testimonial

2014 All Ireland winner Kieran Donaghy with former Derry All Ireland winner Joe Brolly at a fundraiser to help purchase and start work on the Nuns Field at the Austin Stacks GAA Club
2014 All Ireland winner Kieran Donaghy with former Derry All Ireland winner Joe Brolly at a fundraiser to help purchase and start work on the Nuns Field at the Austin Stacks GAA Club

Kieran Donaghy said that he thinks Joe Brolly would have enjoyed Colm Cooper's testimonial at the Intercontinental Hotel in Ballsbridge, Dublin, on Friday night.

Brolly was one of the most outspoken critics of Cooper's testimonial claiming that the event was a rejection of the ideals of the GAA and that Cooper would live to regret the decision to enrich himself.

The dinner was attended by a number of high profile Irish athletes, including Bernard Brogan, Niall Quinn, Ruby Walsh and Kieran Donahy, and the Kerry forward in particular believes Brolly would have enjoyed the evening.

"Jesus, I'd love to have sneaked him in and fired him into the middle of it because I know from past experience that he would have enjoyed it," Donaghy told Newstalk's Off The Ball.

"It might have changed his (mind), it might have given him a different outlook on it - not changed his mind because we know how strong-minded he is - but it might just have given him a different outlook on his thoughts maybe...for everyone that was there, I don't think you'd meet one person who didn't have a brilliant night."

"Everyone that was there, I don't think you've have one person that didn't have a great night, that didn't enjoy the whole thing. To see Colm do well out of it, to see to charities do well out of it and his club and Kerry do well out of it is massive."

Donaghy said that the event was a great night to be involved in and that it was a tremendous success for all involved, from the charities to the guests.

 "I'm not tired and emotional but I'm tired!," Added Donaghy.

"Yeah, no we were there last night and it was absolutely outstanding - the whole production that was put together by Paul Burns.

"The High Kings were singing, Barry Murphy was around the place with a German accent and the hat and it was just very tastefully done and just a great thing to be involved in.

"You know the buzz, I said to a fella at the start of the night 'this is what it's like the morning of an All-Ireland' - there's fierce excitement around the place. People were just looking forward to it and I suppose a bit of the unknown about it - we didn't know what it was going to be...it was a huge success.

"I was talking to Kerry Cancer link bus outside and someone from Crumlin and they were just delighted with it and obviously for them to be getting a lump of money - we all know how hard it is to raise money so to be getting that was great. Colm was class on the night and he spoke unbelievably and yeah, it was a resounding success and lovely to be part of it."

Donaghy also added that he was able to share the stage with a number of different sports stars and that he was flattered that they hold members of the GAA in such a high regard.

"I was up on stage for a few minutes with Sean O'Brien, Ruby, Barry Geraghty, Niall Quinn. The Tullow Tank spoke very well. And, you know, it was actually nice - we obviously look up to all these guys and we'd see them as a level way above us because they're professional, they're getting paid but to hear them last night, they're all fans of us as well, as in they watch the GAA games because they all come from GAA backgrounds. 

"And, you had Barry Geraghty and Ruby going against each other on stage - hopping ball about Meath and Kildare and the craic was mighty."

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