Is cúis mhór áthais dom cúpla focal a scríobh don foilseacháin seo agus ba mhaith liom comhghairdeas a gabhail ar gach duine a bhí páirteach.
This year’s senior GAA Football and Hurling championships carry with them a special resonance coming as they do in this the 125th Anniversary of the Association.
We all remember the Centenary Year Finals, winning teams and captains and even allowing for the difference in the programme of celebrations, it has already been a year to remember in so many ways for the GAA.
The Advertiser Group’s special commemorative publication will shine a light on the reasons that make this year special by underlining the impact our games and our organisation has and continues to have on so many people across the island – and indeed further afield.
While the distribution of the top prizes this year will in all likelihood come down to a relatively small number of counties in both codes, the joy of the championships lies in the fact that so many of our counties set out on the trail with real hopes of making an impression on the summer – if not on the national competitions then at least on their respective provincial competitions.
Growing up I marvelled at the skills of Christy Ring and Jack Lynch and more recently Jimmy Barry Murphy and Teddy McCarthy all of whom made immense contributions to Cork GAA and the Association as a whole.
We remain fortunate that we are still blessed with so many top footballers and hurlers, players who act as role models for our young supporters – the next generation of inter-county players.
Like all followers of the games I not only enjoy being present to witness the skills of these players but also to enjoy and take part in the follow up and reaction that accompanies big games and shock results.
The media plays an important part in helping to promote and illuminate our games and I laud your journalists and your impressive stable of column writers for their own unique contribution in this process.
They inform, provoke and entertain and their analysis adds colour and debate to our games.
I wish your readers an enjoyable summer and hope that they derive as much satisfaction from the games as I expect to between now and September as counties limber up to tackle the dominance of both Kilkenny and Tyrone.
Well done to all involved in what is a fitting memento to a most significant year in our history.
Ar aghaidh len ár gcluichí.
Criostóir Ó Cuana,