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Question Time comes for Mayo on Saturday

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On Saturday a lot of questions will be answered as Derry come to Elvery's MacHale Park for a do or die qualifier game against Mayo. Again we find ourselves having to take the scenic route in pursuit of glory; again our county seems divided with opinion about the prospects of our team.

A little bit of opposition research

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With Mayo's place in division one secure for next season it was nice to sit back, relax, and enjoy the league finals played in glorious sunshine in Croke Park last weekend. I was on co-commentary for Radio One for the Kildare and Galway game on Sunday which felt like a friendly encounter for the first half, however it did liven up for the second period.

Girl Band set to play Garbos next Friday

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Radiohead's Thom Yorke said, “This is me and my son's favourite music at the moment” when speaking about Irish noisemakers Girl Band on BBC Radio One just before Christmas. The band will be headlining a show at the Garbo's venue next Friday, April 7. The last few years have been momentous for Girl Band. Their most recent album “Holding Hands With Jamie” on Rough Trade has raised great acclaim from The Guardian, NME, NPR, Vice, and further afield, they have been named as one of the best new bands of 2016 by Stereogum and one of the best rock bands active today by SPIN.

Club v county, I have seen it from both sides

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The age-old debate of club versus county seems to raise its ugly head year after year. For a county like ours with such a prominent senior football team that has been in so many All Ireland finals of late it seems we still cannot get the balance right between club and county. The same problem occurred again this year with a fixture pile up as our county champions and genuine All Ireland contenders Castlebar Mitchels had to play six games, six weeks in a row, eventually losing to now Connacht champions Corofin in extra time having run out of gas during that period of extra time. Some may be wondering what about Westport? They had the same conundrum. They even had to replay a county semifinal against Shrule/Glencorrib mid-week such was the backlog of games. However, Westport were not on the go for a continuous 18 months as the Mitchels were, and Westport had plenty in the tank at the final whistle of all their games.

O'Connor showed immense bravery to score the equaliser for Mayo

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Anytime over the past few years that I have met, or spoken to Cillian O'Connor, I have found him to be in the vernacular of my home place, Belclare, which is a half-parish of Corofin, 100 per cent "spot-on". Or alternatively he might be described as “sound as a bell” or "sound as a pound" by a few of the older generation.

O’Connor showed immense bravery to score the equaliser for Mayo

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Anytime over the past few years that I have met or spoken to Cillian O’ Connor, I have found him to be in the vernacular of my home place, Belclare, which is a half-parish of Corofin, to be 100 per cent “spot-on”.

Mayo have the potential but Dublin should edge it

It is past midnight on Wednesday night, going into the small hours of Thursday morning. My wife and the four kids are all tucked up and gone to dreamland for the past few hours. Only Caesar our faithful dog is keeping me company, as I start to type this column on why Dublin should win the All-Ireland final in a few days time. However, I am having strong flashbacks to the second of September in 2012 and the All-Ireland semi-final.

Athlone trio Macey South to return with new album

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Mitchels lay down a marker

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The Mayo football championship kicked into life in sweltering Mediterranean like conditions last weekend. Defending champions Castlebar Mitchels showed no ill effects from their All-Ireland final nightmare two months ago when they easily accounted for Crossmolina Deel Rovers despite fielding just over half of the team that started in that All Ireland final.

NUI Galway book launch and public lecture on women in Ireland

Gender ARC and the Centre for Global Women’s Studies at NUI Galway will host a book launch and public lecture on Thursday, 5 May. NUI Galway’s Dr Caitriona Clear will launch her upcoming book Women’s Voices in Ireland: women’s magazines in the 1950s and 60s.

 

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