Thursday 22 February 2018

Final can hold its own - Meany

Basketball

UCD Marian's Conor Meany. Photo: Sportsfile
UCD Marian's Conor Meany. Photo: Sportsfile

Barry Lennon

UCD Marian's Conor Meany insists the National Cup final can still draw TV audiences despite clashing with the hurling and football leagues start.

The Marian and Black Amber Templeogue final, which will be broadcast on TG4, must compete with televised league games owing to changes in the GAA calendar.

However, the 31-year-old, Basketball Ireland's commercial manager, believes the sport can hold its own against other sports.

"I know Dublin are playing (Kildare) on Saturday evening in the league. It potentially does (impact audiences)," Meany admits.

"But basketball is the sort of sport that catches people's attention when they see it. The idea of a final, a tense game, a packed-out arena. I think it'll stand out above the early days of GAA league.

"The original reason the cup was put at this time of year was because there was no other sport on TV. It was the perfect opportunity but nowadays there'll always be something we'll be fighting against."

The point guard is enjoying a purple patch at the moment in the Super League with Marian topping the top-flight table. Although the veteran takes nothing for granted.

"I've ticked a lot of the boxes but there's still one or two left, the league is the big one, that we haven't achieved yet. The cup, I've won it once but I'd love to win it again," he says.

Meany, whose father Paul helped found his club, feels the weight of history more than most - with Marian last lifting the cup in 2011.

"I've been with Marian my whole life. My dad set up the club with friends after they left Marian College in '69 because there was no club for them," he explains.

In the women's final, league leaders DCU Mercy take on Ambassador UCC Glanmire for top honours tomorrow.

Last night, DCU Mercy triumphed 73-54 over Ambassador UCC Glanmire in the U-20 women's National Cup final - in the first of three finals for the Dublin club.

  • Men's National Cup final, Live, TG4, 8.0

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