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OUR GAMES – Gearoid Adams recalls the most memorable games of his career

Name: Gearoid Adams

 

Teams played for: St John’s, Antrim, St Mary’s University

 

Current involvement: Assistant manager in Burren

 

Which Club game, that you played in, will you never forget and why?

Winning the Senior Championship in 1998. We had won a few u-21s and minors. Because of that I thought we would have won four or five championships, but we only won one. So that was my greatest memory. When you only get one that has to be your favourite memory.

 

Which club game, that you watched, will you never forget and why?

St John’s played Loughgiel in the semi-final of the hurling last year. It was end to end. It was one of those games that could have went either way. Either team could have won on the day. It went to extra time and big Domhnall (Nugent) played with one arm. That will stay in the memory for a long time. But it was unfortunate that we didn’t get to the final.

 

Which county game, that you played in, will you never forget and why?

I could mention beating Down in the quarter-final in 2000. But the more important one was the first semi-final against Derry in 2000 at Casement. It was the most packed I’ve ever seen Casement. 30,000 people there. I will remember it more so because the referee blew the whistle with Kevin Madden on the ball. Everyone talks about big Tohill (Anthony) catching the ball above the bar, I always remember John Bannon blowing the whistle, with Madden on the ball, on the right hand side on the 21 with seconds left. He had received the pass. I always thought the stronger team gets you in the replay.

 

Which county game, that you watched, will you never forget and why?

I was lucky enough to watch the Meath-Dublin replays. I was at two out of the three games, they were both brilliant for their hard-hitting and their tenacity. They were both hard-hitting.

 

What was the funniest thing you ever saw in a game?

I was playing a game for the Ranch (St Mary’s University) against Queen’s in a Ryan Cup game. I was marking a guy and he was giving me a bit of stick. Personal stuff. I was giving it back as well. But I knew the referee, and the referee very quietly was walking past me and whispered to me ‘I’ll give you a yellow’. Which was basically him letting me have a go at him once. When I actually got the yellow, he was a bit annoyed and he basically said ‘you could have gone a bit easier than that’. He was a family friend, but that sort of thing would never happen again.

 

What was the strangest thing you ever saw in a game?

I went out to a league match with St John’s. We had been out the night before and we had a few beers. We had got changed and were walking out under the old stands at Corrigan Park on the day of the game. I was walking out and this guy still had his trousers on. But he had his shorts and socks on over his trousers. He didn’t realise. As soon as I saw him he gave me a dig and told me to keep my mouth shut. He ran back into the changing room and got sorted.

 

What was the most memorable performance from a player in a game that you watched?

Peter Canavan in 1995 from a forward’s perspective. As a half-back, and watching half backs evolve, I’d say Sean Og de Paor in 1998 when Galway won the All-Ireland. I watched him the whole year.

 

What was the most memorable performance from a player in a game that you played?

There are so many. The 1998 final, Jimmy Wilson. He is a St John’s man. He didn’t get the plaudits afterwards but he was the one that got us over the line. He did all the work and took all the hits for us to get the vital scores.

 

What did you love about the games you played in?

 

Man to man, there was no place to hide. That seems to have gone now with more systems being played.

 

What did you hate about the games you played in?

Man to man, no hiding places. You were getting roasted and then getting the shepherds hook.

2 Antrim v Derry 35803c25

FRUSTRATION… Gearoid Adams says he’ll never forget the moment when Kevin Madden (pictured) was denied a chance to score in the Ulster Semi-final against Derry in 2000

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MAN TO MAN… The greatest and the worst thing about his days playing was the man-to-man element of the game

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