One of the central sports pieces in this week's Sunday Independent is a lengthy profile of Marty Morrissey by Dermot Crowe. It's excellent, and covers plenty of aspects from Morrissey's career, including his rise to RTE and the story behind his famous radio commentary ahead of last year's All-Ireland hurling final.
It also recounts two of his more infamous jousts with titans of the GAA: his tetchy interview with Brian Cody after the 2009 All-Ireland, and his interview in South Africa with Páidí O'Sé after the latter's infamous description of Kerry fans as "the roughest type of fucking animals you could ever deal with".
O'Sé was on a pre-season trip to South Africa with Kerry, and in an interview with journalist Kevin Kimmage of the Sunday Independent, he let slip that infamous line, with all hell breaking loose at home after its publication.
The entire saga is nicely recounted here:
O'Sé found himself in the eye of a storm thousands of miles away, and in a bid to diffuse the situation, asked Marty Morrissey to conduct an interview. Morrissey had been holidaying in South Africa too, meaning his presence was coincidental.
Morrissey agreed, and then tells a slightly surreal story of O'Sé seeking permission to do the interview from a slightly surprising figure.
He said, 'Give me your phone, I need to check with The Boss'.
I gave him my phone. So, he went off and came back and said, 'No good, didn't get The Boss'. He tried again a few minutes later and this time he was was successful.
'The Boss says I should do the interview with you'. And I said, 'Well fair play to Máire (Paidi's wife)'.
'Máire! Don't mind Máire. She's not the boss. There's only one boss in Ireland'.
I said, 'Who' that?'
'Charles J. Haughey'.
He'd rung Charlie. He'd asked Charlie for permission.
Interestingly, the later statement released by the Kerry chairman confirming that the situation had been resolved stated that the county chairman had advised O'Sé not to give the interview to Morrissey, but O'Sé went ahead anyway.
Haughey and O'Sé evidently had a good relationship, with Sean Walsh telling a story at O'Sé's funeral of how Páidí was hobbling around Leinster House on crutches, along with Haughey. The former Taoiseach asked 'Did you break any bones during your career, Páidí?'. This was the response:
No, no Taoiseach – none of my own.
You can read the full interview with Morrissey in today's Sunday Independent.