JACK MADDEN: Different horses for different courses

WHEN Sétanta was crowned Cú Chulainn, surely even he himself didn’t know what he had let himself in for. His trusty camán and sliotar, enough to defeat the mighty hound of Culann. Let the magic begin, the self-proclaimed greatest game on Earth, and all the rest of it. Lovely hurling. They say he was born […]

Jack Madden: Groundhog day

“DERRY surprise Monaghan to continue Ulster run”. That was the RTÉ headline from May, 15, 2022. Less than 12 months on, it seemed as though Derry surprised Monaghan again, in spite of the reputation they have earned since. Seven points was the margin at the half-time break last year in the Athletic Grounds. In Healy […]

JACK MADDEN: Crisis? What crisis?

A STEADY flow of people forever trickle down Shop Street in Galway town. From the inside looking out, it is perhaps one of the finest viewing points in the country for a wannabe people watcher. Most people wander in without any prior intention, walking at the most nonchalant pace, in a state of semi-focus. The […]

JACK MADDEN: Out with the old, in with the new

“He’s the most driven man and footballer in Monaghan.” THE above sentence jotted down by Brendan Crossan in May 2018 was quite the compliment from Séamus McEnaney. It’s the kind of thing that Vinny Corey probably appreciates deep down, not that he’d tell you that. You don’t become the most driven man in Monaghan if […]

JACK MADDEN: Grabbing GAA by the balls

MINOR championship, the perfect antidote for the Leaving Cert. A stress reliever, an outlet, and a shot at a level of glory you have likely never experienced in your short lifetime. Serious to an extent, but not the be all and the end all. A minor club championship match should not have the capability to ‘cast […]

JACK MADDEN: ‘Blayney battle Belgium for Dutch gold

ULSTER Junior Ladies’ champions Castleblayney Faughs, led by joint-manager Paddy McNally, take on Belgium GAA this Sunday in the All-Ireland quarter-final in the Netherlands. Paddy McNally is a man whose life essentially revolves around the big ball. Coaching, managing, playing, developing – it’s all in a day’s work. And yet for all this planning, there […]

JACK MADDEN: The rocky road to Dublin

IS Shane Walsh’s move to Dublin giants Kilmacud Crokes just a small indicator of a more widespread evolution? Every journey has a beginning and an end. In the sporting world, a journey could take you from Carraroe to Qatar. A successful career is one that navigates the road from starlet to superstar. The winding, pothole-laden […]