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Author Archive

Six Nations : Ireland Seek Solid Start

sixnations

And so here we are again, the start of another Six Nations campaign. Probably the most open this championship has been in years. Four of the six competing nations will have high hopes of claiming the honours, maybe even harbour ambitions of a Grand Slam. If we have learned anything from last year’s competition, it should be that the November internationals only give a slight indication as to who’s in form and who isn’t. Wales had a dismal run of performances in that respect and continued their losing streak against Ireland in their opening fixture of the Six Nations. They turned their fortunes around in the next round and went on to claim their second championship win in a row. England brought with them, the slayers of the All Blacks tag and expectations were high, however they fell at the last hurdle and fell hard. Ireland and France had campaigns to forget and Italy and Scotland managed to escape from the bottom two places on the table. The opening weekend will obviously tell a lot, here’s what’s on offer. Continue reading

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Six Nations 2014 – Testing Times

sixnations

After the highs and lows of the November Internationals, Joe Schmidt must look to the Six Nations Championship as a chance to show what Ireland can really offer. The World Cup in 2015 is being held just across the pond and all eyes will be on England and their neighbouring nations. Schmidt has two Six Nations campaigns to get through before the World Cup becomes an issue to concentrate on. So what are Ireland’s chances in this year’s competition?

It wouldn’t be difficult to improve on last year’s dismal campaign, that had started so well. Beating the reigning champions at home in Cardiff was obviously the best start possible for the Irish. It wasn’t only the points that mattered but it was the way in which the team went about getting them. Yes, they were out on their feet for the last ten minutes or so and they allowed Wales back into that game just after half time, from a 3-30 score line, Ireland held on to win 22-30. It was the first half performance that included hunger, a controlled aggression and an ability to finish that left us feeling that maybe just maybe, another slam was on the cards. It must be said that Wales had suffered seven consecutive defeats (4 versus Australia) and were without their regular head coach Warren Gatland, previous to the Irish game. Still the Irish looked good. Ireland lost out at home to England in a kicking contest on a wet, windy day at home. England however were the favourites after taking care of the All Blacks, the previous November. For Ireland it went from bad to worse, losing to Scotland, drawing with France and for the first time, losing to Italy. Overall a dismal campaign that they will want to forget. Continue reading

Problem Gambling

gambling

Compulsive gambling, pathological gambling, problem gambling, call it what you may but this addiction is becoming a serious problem in this country and is leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. Unlike alcohol or drugs, the gambling addiction can be hidden from friends and loved ones. It may seem irrational to the person looking on, but to the compulsive gambler the need to gamble is uncontrollable. They are caught in the obsession that is the need to place a bet. Compulsive gambling is a progressive addiction and so as time goes by the gambler will feed his/her habit more and more until it becomes all that they think about. If any of this sounds familiar to you or you feel you know someone that may be in trouble with gambling, have a look at these twenty questions. They are the questions that are printed in the back of the Gamblers Anonymous booklet. Most compulsive gamblers will answer yes, to at least seven of these questions. Continue reading

Hurling New Guns, Not So New

Hurling-GAA

The 2013 hurling championship has already been written as one of the best in years. The media pumped it up for all it was worth. Clare managed to claim the title after two attempts against Cork and all was well in the G.A.A. world. A sigh of relief from the organisation, Kilkenny not only didn’t win the All Ireland but they weren’t even involved at the semi-final stage. The interest from the rest of the country could return, the game was in danger of being monopolised by one county. I have read with interest, hurling articles, over the past few months. The ‘old guard’ were being replaced. The ‘old guard’ seemingly, according to most columnists are Kilkenny, Cork and Tipperary. Continue reading

Why Ross Is Still The Boss, Roysh.

rock

Ross O’Carroll Kelly has entertained us for so long now, so what better way to spread some festive cheer by charting some of his most memorable quotes. There’s a few Christmas crackers in here.

I end up letting her believe we’re, like, an item, but I tell her that if we’re going to, like, give this thing a proper crack, we’re going to have to be PONPA for the time being, as in Private Only, No Public Appearances, just because of all the pressure that’s going to come on us from all sides, bullshit bullshit bullshit. I don’t know how I keep a straight face sometimes She was pretty alroysh looking, I have to say, went out three or four times and got on fine, until this one particular day, roysh, when we were driving back to her gaff after being at the cinema and she said those dreaded words: I don’t believe in sex before marriage. I basically told her to get the fock out of the cor. Don’t get me wrong, roysh, I pulled over first. She was there, Ross, I live miles from here.? And I was loike, There’s a bus stop over there. Use it. Continue reading

It Could Be You

lotto

The advertisements say, ‘it could be you’, and it could be, but it’s highly unlikely. It’s 8,145,060 to 1, to be exact to come up with the winning combination of numbers. But what is the National Lottery doing to our society? After the weather it’s probably the most talked about subject in silence filling conversation. The advertisements are becoming more and more frequent. They appear to be targeting a younger market and playing the lottery is now available seven days a week. Continue reading

Irish Rugby Review 2013

rugby

The November series of 2012 led us into 2013 with a mixed bag of expectations, hope and a real feel of not knowing where Irish rugby was going. There was a sense that change was on the horizon, Declan Kidney was in charge of an ageing team but there were signs of talented youth on the periphery. South Africa were the first of the visiting nations and in a tight game they just did enough to keep Ireland from claiming a win. A scoreline of 16-12 suggested as much but it was a game that Ireland should have and could have won. The courageous performance of nearly winning was now becoming a bit too regular and the fans were becoming somewhat impatient, good performances no longer enough to keep them happy. The following week, an uncapped Ireland XV played host to Fiji in Thomond Park. It was a game that although one-sided, I as an Irish rugby fan, thoroughly enjoyed. Continue reading

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