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4 Winners & Losers From The Weekend's GAA Action

4 Winners & Losers From The Weekend's GAA Action
By Gary Connaughton

It was another stellar weekend of GAA action over the last few days, but who has emerged from the fixtures around the country with their reputation enhanced?

Perhaps even more importantly, who has gone the other way?

Here are four winners and four losers from the weekend's GAA action.

Winners

Conor McCarthy

Not only did Conor McCarthy net a massively impressive first half hat-trick in Monaghan's draw with Donegal on Saturday, but he also managed to annoy Joe Brolly in the process.

The forward was in scintillating form, making mice meat of the opposition defence for his third goal.

As if that wasn't enough good work for the afternoon, he also managed to piss off Joe Brolly with his post-match interview.

Some would argue that was an even more enjoyable aspect of his day.

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Offaly Hurlers

Offaly hurling has been an entirely miserable place for the last few years, green shoots are appearing that there may be brighter days ahead.

They won their third consecutive game of the league campaign at the weekend, producing an impressive victory over Carlow.

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They will be hoping to carry that form into the Christy Ring Cup, where a failure to earn promotion would have to be seen as a major disappointment.

 

Clare Footballers

Clare in the top division of the NFL would be quite the sight, but we could be very close to seeing it come to fruition.

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They earned a second win in Division 2 on Sunday, defeating Kildare on a scoreline of 1-13 to 0-13 in Newbridge. It also worth noting that they continue to achieve these results without Gary Brennan.

Colm Collins is doing some job.

 

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The Football Championship

Dublin and Kerry was billed as a meeting between the two best teams in the country, so how disheartening would it have been to see Dublin run away with the contest?

That looked like it could be a possibility at one point, although Peter Keane's side produced a brilliant comeback to earn a draw in Thurles.

Hopefully, this points to an exciting summer ahead. The absence of Kerry from last year's All-Ireland series made it somewhat of a non-event, with the Dubs cantering towards a sixth consecutive triumph.

That might not be the case in 2021.

 

Losers

Hamstrings

The hamstring has the been the folly of many a GAA player over the years, but we could be on the precipice of an injury endemic at inter-county level.

With so little training under the belt for players ahead of the league, an increase in the frequency of injuries seemed like. That has indeed turned out to be the case.

Michael Murphy was amongst the players to tweak a hamstring over the last couple of weeks, with Eamon Fitzmaurice saying on Allianz League Sunday that we are likely to see more of that moving forward.

 

Random Close Contacts

Clare were without a pair of players for their NHL game against Laois on Sunday thanks to coronavirus contact tracing.

Members of the Wexford hurling panel tested positive for the virus, and with the two counties having played the previous weekend, two Clare players were subsequently nominated as close contacts.

It has caused a big controversy, with both Wexford and Clare unhappy with the way the situation has played out. Brian Lohan was certainly not pleased, saying:

We were contacted by the HSE to say that two of the Wexford players nominated two of our players as close contacts.

That was unusual for us, because any of the protocol that we do is aimed to try and make sure that we are casual contact rather than close contacts...

But certainly, there was a whole load of, a whole lot of anger amongst our set-up as a result of what happened.

The Wexford county board have since sought a retraction after those comments.

 

Limerick Hurlers

At what point do Limerick start to panic? It's unlikely to happen anytime soon, but they have now gone three league games without a win having looked practically invincible in 2020.

They should be fine, but with championship not too far away, they should be looking to turn their form around very soon.

 

This Commentator's Vocal Chords

Antrim's late win over Sligo was an impressive one, but it dwarfed in comparison to the antics of the local commentary team.

All we can say is sit back and enjoy this one.

SEE ALSO: O'Rourke Has Sympathy For Referee After Farcical Advantage Rule Stops Kerry Goal

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