GAA

A Photo Tribute To The Spartan Beauty Of January GAA

A Photo Tribute To The Spartan Beauty Of January GAA

Most years, there would be a smattering of complaint in the air. As intercounty GAA games were played off in grounds that are more steam than grass, and in front of less people than last year's All-Ireland finals, you'd usually read an article or two about the pointlessness of the whole thing. Some would even allude to the cruelty of making sportspeople play sport in winter.

This year, sadly, there's none of that. There's really none of anything. Intercounty training has been banned this month, nevermind actual games. The moaners won't have a chance to complain about January GAA, and the rest of us won't get a chance to bask in its unique beauty.

We've compiled a group of reasons why January GAA brings a cold, frozen tear to the eye of any true Gael.

Hastily constructed scoreboards

January GAA

Dublin v IT Carlow O Byrne Cup 2016

Wexford v Dublin from this year's O Byrne Cup

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We are particular fans of the precise sketching of the 'X' and 'F' in Wexford.

 

The Emperor's clothes pulled back from the media machine

Louth Public Relations Officer, Bob Doherty delivers team sheets ahead of the game. Louth v Meath. Gaelic Grounds, Drogheda

This is the Louth PRO Bob Doherty delivering the team sheets ahead of the O'Byrne Cup Semi-Final against Meath.

 

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Kildare manager Cian O'Neill is interviewed by journalists after the game. Bord na Mona O'Byrne Cup, Group B, Kildare v DIT

Former Kildare manager Cian O'Neill being grilled by the newshounds beside a microphone stand.

 

The kitman comes to the fore

Monaghan kit man, Francis McGinnity drying kits before the game. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group C, Monaghan v Ulster University, St Tiernach's Park Monaghan kit man, Francis McGinnity writing the Monaghan name on the ball. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group C, Round 2, Monaghan v Armagh

In this case, the work of Monaghan kitman Francis McGinnity.

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January GAA

 

Volunteers of all ages are called upon

Stewards have tea and study the team sheet before todays game. Bank of Ireland Dr McKenna Cup, Semi-Final, Cavan v Derry. Athletic Grounds, Armagh

Eight year old Joshua McLoughlin, from Dromard, Co. Longford, lends a helping hand before the game

You won't find glory hunters carrying water bottles on a cold January Sunday in Tullamore.

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Alternative warm-up surfaces 

Offaly captain Colin Egan leads his team-mates to the pitch after warming up at Birr Rugby club. Bord na Mona Walsh Cup Group 1, Offaly v Kilkenny The Sligo players warm up outside the dressing rooms at Tuam Stadium before the match. FBD League, Section B, Round 1, Galway v Sligo, Tuam Stadium, Tuam

Tarmacadam, muck. You take what you can get.

And you might even combine your warm-up with an interesting trip to the ground.

January GAA January GAA

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All hail the Tea Lady

Local supporter Ann Goldrick prepares the refreshments for the backroom staff and officials before the game between Galway and DCU. Bord na Mona Walsh Cup, Tea lady, Michelle Connolly. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group C, Round 2, Monaghan v Armagh, St Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Monaghan.

Freezing afternoons make the tea lady essential to spectating. Take a bow Ann Goldrick and Michelle Connolly.

 

The scaled-back 'shop'

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Eilish Mannion waits for customers at the match. FBD League, Section B, Round 1, Galway v Sligo

The range of cardboard containers for products is the really great thing here. You can bet that the 'Paddy' case is filled with Rolos.

 

The extremely well-signposted ticket booth

Marion Donnelly keeps dry in the ticket office. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group C, Monaghan v Ulster University, St Tiernach's Park, Clones, Co. Monaghan.

tickets

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You can't pre-book your tickets online, so best not miss the ticket office.

 

And finally... some of the breathtaking scenery at pitches away from Jones' Road

The Limerick team go through their warm-up routine ahead of the game. McGrath Cup Football, Group B, Round 1, Cork v Limerick. Mallow GAA Grounds, Mallow

Mallow.

Tyrone manager Mickey Harte and selector Gavin Devlin walk the pitch before the game. Bank of Ireland Dr. McKenna Cup, Group A, Round 2, Derry v Tyrone

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Owenbeg.

A general view of the Louth team warming up before the game. Bord na Mona O'Byrne Cup, Group B, Louth v Offaly, Darver Centre of Excellence, Dowdallshill

Dowdallshill, Louth.

SEE ALSO: GAA Cliches That Are Now Sadly Complete Bullshit

January GAA

 

Balls Team

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