Thursday, 27 December 2012

2013 may prove year of Evolution for Cricket Ireland

Since 2007 and Ireland's qualification for the super eight section of the world cup the Irish cricket team has lived on a slow upward curve which has generally included 2 or 3 games a season against the games full member nations.

Monday, 3 December 2012

Sonny Bill's Millions

Growing up something of a sports nut involved switching the sport I played most every 6 months with the result that I reached the dizzy heights of average in some sports while dismally failing to in others.

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Celtic and the Promised Land

Victor Wanyama head's the opening goal for Celtic against Barcelona

Back in 2005 the year before my leaving certificate I had quite a time comsuming obsession, basically qualifying Irish clubs like Bohemian's or Cork City FC to the Champions League Group Stages on to the knock out stages and ultimately towards winning the tournament via the famous Football Manager portal.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Irish Rugby's Latest Foreign Legion

Michael R Bent
Rugby supporters this writer included have often privately sneered at the lack of impact football at grass roots level has on the fortunes of the Irish national football team.

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

A Solution for European Club Rugby

English and French clubs displeasure with the current qualification format for the Heineken Cup is perfectly understandable that's my honest point of view.

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Golf: What does a Ryder Cup win really mean for European golf

Martin Kaymer's nerveless putt to retain the Ryder Cup may have quietened forty odd thousand rowdy American golf fans as well as lifting the spirits of his European teammates and inspirational captain Jose Maria Olazabal but another Ryder cup victory for Europe looks unlikely to improve the lot of professional golf in Europe.

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Rankins International Retirement

Boyd Rankin bowling at the recent T20 qualifiers in March
Imagine if Shane Long in order to secure a new contract with West Brom was required to retire from international football or Tommy Bowe when considering a new contract offer with the Ospreys was encouraged to concentrate solely on club rugby going forward.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Liverpools Ex-Striker Dilemma

With the release of both Andy Carroll and Nathan Ecclestone and the most disappointing start to a season in fifty years it has become apparent that Liverpool will need at least one extra forward primarily as a bench player who can offer some impact from the bench.

Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Donegal mall Cork

Paul Kerrigan concedes a free against Donegal
In my analysis prior to the game I felt Cork could possibly match Donegal for physical conditioning and point scoring ability and win this game by a whisker, I could not have been more wrong.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Preview :Cork vs Donegal

Both Cork and Donegal impressed me in different ways in their respective All-Ireland quarter finals making this weekend semi final a fascinating encounter for the neutrals.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Irish Sports Agents Making Positive Inroads

Conor Ridge and Ross Fisher
The word agent has from time to time been seen as a dirty word in sport. Whether that's because of the presumed greed of premiership footballer's representatives when seeking their cut from a transfer or worse still stealing money directly from their clients.

Thursday, 9 August 2012

Irish Cricket: Will The Next Eoin Morgan Switch

Eoin Morgan at the crease for Ireland
6 years ago when Ed Joyce decided playing for England would serve his cricketing ambitions best I believe he was correct.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Football :Olympic Mens

The Argentinean team celebrate victory in Beijing

Olympic football while still the beautiful game is a world away from regular FIFA organised international competitions. London 2012 is no different with the teams qualified a mix of lesser lights in name at least like the United Arab Emirates, New Zealand and Belarus as well as perceived world superpowers such as Spain and Brazil.

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Olympic Gymnastics :Kieran Behan

Irish gymnast Kieran Behan
The olympics despite the claims of events like the rugby and football world cup is the purest and most exciting event in world sport. I say this because of the number of countries able to compete in one event or another and the lack of a role money plays in the lives of most participants.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

Football : Why Arsenal are right to offer Van Persie no more

Football is a game built on emotions at the best of times. Understandably the view of the majority of Arsenal fans is that the club should have done more and still should do more to keep hold of Robin Van Persie.

Wednesday, 11 July 2012

GAA: Best in the World

David Fitzgerald and John Conlon embrace after the final whistle

It frequently crosses my mind in April and May that the English Premiership is heading for the off season and that I'll be missing my regular dose of live sport for about three months. It s not something I'm proud of but for all the other sporting pursuits I enjoy the premiership still tends to be my stable diet when it comes to watching live sport.

Sunday, 1 July 2012

Cricket Ireland : Could a tour of Australia and New Zealand work

Will Porterfield and Michael Clarke 'You can stand under my  Umbrella'

Being a fan of the Irish cricket team can be a tough gig at times. In saying this I'm not referring to the teams performances. As much as they suffer highs and lows like most teams its the weather in Ireland thats grinding my gear.

Monday, 25 June 2012

GAA: GAA May Look to Expand Markets

Thierry Henry taking on the Dub's

The GAA while a much loved organisation in Ireland is often seen as having a very limited potential beyond these shores. With over a million members worldwide and a stadium as modern as Croke Park available they are already doing many things excellently.

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Ireland Football : Answer to International problem could be Europe

Barry Maguire of VVV Venlo

A consistent criticism of the Irish football team despite the relative recent success of qualifying for the European championships has been the standard and style of play of the team. The deficiencies in the style of play in the team can largely be traced back to the technical ability of some of the players and the coaching these players have received during their lives. Perhaps the league the majority of the squad play in on a weekly basis has also played a part.

Friday, 15 June 2012

Ireland Football :Boys in Green say Adios to Euros

Andrews Agony

Last night wasn't pleasant for any Irish supporters apart perhaps from that guy at work who always knew Ireland would lose 4-0 to Spain. Over the last few months the country has been taken away in a wave of optimism that believed our shortcomings going forward would be more than compensated for by an efficient defensive system which had managed to keep clean sheets when it mattered most during the qualifying campaign.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Cricket Ireland :No Road to go for Hamish Marshall

Hamish Marshall 2nd from left in Dublin in 2010 for a coaching  session
Having been left out of Ireland's 13 man squad for the ODI with Australia on the 23rd of June it seems Hamish Marshall's prospective Ireland career is over before it began. Marshall a former New Zealand international declared for Ireland in April 2010 due to a desire to play cricket at a higher level as well as the chance to become involved in coaching.  He appealed to the ICC to play for Ireland 1 year short of his stand down period(4 years when transferring from a full member side) however this was rejected on the basis that he had no prior connection with Irish cricket.

Monday, 11 June 2012

Cricket or Rugby : Who spreads their game best

Irelands George Dockrell after taking the wicket of Sachin Tendulkar
The rapid rise in the standards of associate cricketing nations has seen a huge increase in the focus on how the International Cricket Council views emerging cricket nations and whether it is a desirable thing for the ICC for those associates to make it to the top table and become full members.

Tuesday, 5 June 2012

Ireland football : Trappatoni, Foley and a change of heart

Irelands Kevin Foley

In my first year in secondary school I was due to be a part of a quintet singing group at the end of year concert. I'd told my parents about it and I'd taken plenty of time off class, then the night before the concert I was pulled from the group. The teacher in his wisdom realized I couldn't sing and that he'd had a bit of a brain fart when he picked me. Realizing what a sensitive young fellow I was he offered to take me back into the group if I'd mime. I wasn't prepared to do that and I didn't take part in the concert so I fully appreciate Kevin Foleys position on not staying with the squad.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Cricket Ireland :Tough Calls await for big Phil

Ireland coach Phil Simmons

Ireland's cricket teams summer will kick off in earnest in a little under 3 weeks in Belfast. In previous years a fixture against a full member has been seen as a once off chance to prove that Ireland deserve more regular opportunities against the top sides.

Monday, 28 May 2012

Where to go from here : Liverpool F.C.

Former Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish
Sometime between Liverpool's FA cup final loss to Chelsea and a low profile defeat in south Wales on Sunday John Henry and his Fenway Sports Group decided a change was needed at Anfield. Despite significant investment, a good age profile and a healthy portion of British players Liverpool's squad had failed to achieve the seasons primary goal, Champions League qualification. In fact they'd come up well short.