The Sporting Diary

with Diarmaid Doherty

The Sporting Diary

Rovers flying high

I got a chat with Letterkenny Rovers' match winner, Terence Shiels after his team's dramatic win over Portmarnock on Sunday. The 2-1 victory put Letterkenny into the second round of the FAI Senior Cup for the first time in the club's history.
I know Terence a long time now. Off the field, a sound guy. On the pitch, a player with bags of ability, energy and no end of skill. At 36, he's one of the veterans in the team, but as he pointed out, he's not the oldest. And I know deep down how much he's enjoying his football at the minute. He probably still can't get his head around the fact that a fortnight on Saturday, he'll be lining out at the Aviva Stadium in the FAI Intermediate Cup Final. For his family too, it'll be a proud day. Terence's dad Charlie has coached underage teams in the town for the best part of 30 years (he even gets a mention in Rory Kavanagh's book). He has enjoyed some memorable days as a manager/coach. I'm sure watching his son Terence lining out in the Aviva on Saturday week will beat them all.

A good day for the GAA

Mícheál Ó Muircheartaigh reckons it's always a good sign when the supporters stay around after a game. It means they've enjoyed the match, many staying about afterwards, and in a way, not wanting the occasion to be over. So was the case on Sunday at Croke Park where the association hosted their national 1916 Commemorative Event after the National Football League finals. ‘Laochra’ presented the story of Ireland in a theatrical production that included the best elements of the Irish cultural entertainment with a cast of 3,500 performers - among them O Muircheartaigh. By all accounts it was a fantastic event - and the reaction since, especially on social media, has been nothing but positive. A good day for the GAA.

North West 10k

The centre of Letterkenny will come to a standstill on Sunday when crowds descend on the town for the annual North West 10k. It's a rare sporting event where the participants outnumber the spectators. The numbers taking part this year will be as high as ever. One of the race organisers, Brendan McDaid, was saying this week that many taking part will run it for the first time, having perhaps walked it for the first time in recent years. It's no mean feat running a distance of 10k, especially for those who count themselves as fun-runners. For quite a few of those entering Sunday's race, this will be the longest distance they have ever run. It'll be their marathon this weekend - and they deserve the best of luck. Remember, once you get to the top of the Port Road, it's downhill and mostly flat afer that!