There was a varied assortment of Irish great and good on 'Celebrity Masterchef' this eve, from Colm O'Gorman - the Executive Director of Amnesty International Ireland - to former Eurovision contestant Niamh Kavanagh and model Holly Carpenter. Sonia O'Sullivan is set to grace the TV3 show with her presence next week, but today the sporting world's gallant representative was former Armagh footballer and All-Ireland winner Oisin McConville.
Anyone who watched the brilliant BBC documentary on McConville's club Crossmaglen Rangers and saw the segment featuring his mother will have no doubt that he grew up being fed good, hearty Irish fare. But that was no guarantee that McConville himself would be any great shakes in the kitchen.
And he didn't exactly inspire confidence when he claimed he'd only really been cooking for "three weeks" and provided the following description of how marriage affected his culinary acumen:
The vast majority of my life I spent living at home with mother, so she cooked and I ate. Then I got married, and (himself and his wife) moved in together, and she cooked and I ate.
But McConville powered on with his simple dish of steak, chips, carrots and parsnips. His parsnips and carrots may have been raw, but his steak saved him. With the same calm under pressure that he displayed when slotting home a goal in the 2002 All-Ireland final, he delivered the goods despite only three weeks of preparation (he wouldn't tolerate that sort of 'rely on your natural ability' attitude from his Cross lads, but we'll let him off).
Oisin McConville Celebrity Masterchef #1
And he was probably helped by the stare he gave the judges. Many a corner-back has woken up at night in a cold sweat at the memory of that stare.
Oisin McConville Celebrity Masterchef #2
Roasting defenders and roasting chips. It's the Crossmaglen way. Despite picking up the early knock, Oisin made it through as Carpenter was knocked out (no qualifier system exists in the competition).
The judges weren't half intimidated by Oisin McConville.. Top man! #celebritymasterchefIRL
— Jimmy Dillane (@JimmyDillane) January 16, 2017
Oisin McConville somehow scrapes his way into the next round. It's like the noughties all over again. #celebritymasterchefIRL
— Ryan Ferry (@RFerry92) January 16, 2017
Oisin McConville was the Star of the show... She cooks, I eat! 😂 #celebritymasterchefIRL
— June Fardey 🇮🇪 🇪🇺 (@JuneFardey) January 16, 2017
You can catch 'Celebrity Masterchef' every Monday on TV3 at 10pm from 16th January to 6th March 2017. Next week, the remaining contestants will be put through their paces: Sonia O’Sullivan, Samantha Mumba, Nadia Forde, Simon Delaney and Mundy.